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Theeyal is a Kerala dish. It is quite similar to Sambar, another popular South Indian dish. Theeyal is made from a spice mixture consisting of roasted coconut, coriander seeds, dried red chili and fenugreek. All spices are ground to a paste and cooked in tamarind water with vegetables. When completed it look like a rich medium brown gravy and is normally mixed with rice.
Theeyal, which means “burnt dish”, is a typical Kerala dish featuring burnt coconut and is usually dark brown in color. It gets its color from browning of coconut and also from another ingredient, tamarind. In some parts of Kerala, theeyal is included in a traditional sadya menu. Vegetables used for Theeyal include Pearl onion or Shallot, Bitter melon, Potato, Eggplant, Okra, Zucchini, Raw Mango.
Elephant yam(Chena) – 1/2 cupPotato – 1/2 cupLady’s finger (cut into small pieces) – 1/2 cupGrated Coconut – 2 cupsSmall Onion – 3-4 nosDry chillies – 2-3 nosChilli Powder – 1 tspCoriander Powder – 2 tspTurmeric Powder – 1/2 tspTamarind Juice – taken from lemon-sized tamarindMustard Seeds – 1 tspCoconut Oil – 2 tbspSalt and WaterCurry leaves – 2 springs
Method:1. Cut the vegetables length-wise and cook them in water adding salt and turmeric powder.
2. Roast the grated coconut with thinly sliced onions, dry chillies, and 1 spring curry leaves. Add 1 tsp of coconut oil for frying. Roast the mixture till golden brown.
3. Allow it to cool. When cooled, grind them to a fine paste, without adding water.
4. Heat oil in a pan, add mustard seeds. When the seeds start to splutter, add a spring of curry leaves and 1 or 2 dry red chillies to it.5. Add the sliced ladies finger and fry it until done.
6. Add coriander powder and chilli powder; allow to fry for some time. Add the ground masala to this.
7. Pour tamarind juice, water and the cooked vegetables and mix well. Simmer for a few minutes.
8. When the gravy is of medium thickness, switch off the flames.
9. Serve hot with steamed rice.