Poricha Kootu is a traditional dish made with mixed vegetables, toor dal, coconut paste and Kootu podi. Since there is no tamarind in this recipe, Poricha Kootu is not as tangy as sambar.
Poricha literally means “fried” in Tamil. The fresh ground spices, dry roasted and added to vegetable gravy is the highlight of this dish. Add a spoon or 2 of this powder in the end and the kootu totally transforms into a this flavorful recipe.
Frankly I was not a big fan of this dish as i always elt it missed something ( I guess I was missing the tangy ness that I am used to in it’s closer cousins like sambar or pitlai). Slowly over time, I have grown to like the flavors of this dish and now I try to make it once in few months.
If you are ike me you must be wondering what is the difference between Araichivita Kootu, Araichivita sambar and Poricha Kootu.
- Poricha Kootu: A kootu made with a special roasted kootu podi. Dry roast, toor dal, urad dal, black pepper, few red chilies, some cumin and few other spices is ground together. Cooked toor or moong dal is added to cut vegetables are cooked with coconut paste and kootu podi. Mixed veggies or veggie like Flat beans or plantain can be used in this recipe.
- Kootu: Kootu is made by veggies cooked in coconut garvy It is usually it is mild and is accompanied with a spicy rice dish. It has a thick consistency and goes very well with variety of mixed rice, vathalkuzhambu, Thogayal rice , plain rice and even rotis.
- Araichivita sambar: Most veggies can be used ( popular veggies are: drumstick, carrot, potato, brinjal, Onion, pumpkin(white and yellow, flat beans and different turnip to name a few). Veggies are usually cut into bigger chunks and toor dal is must and used in more quantity. More tamarind can be used as it is usually tangy.
Here is a quick Kootu podi recipe. Like any other Masala powder store this powder for 2-3 weeks. Dry roast and grind the below ingredients to a smooth powder.
- 3/4 cup Dhaniya
- 1/4 cup Toor dal
- 2 tsp Jeera
- 1 tsp Fenugreek
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 2 tsp urad dal
- 18-10 red chillis ( mix of bedegai and regular )
- 1 tsp horse gram optional
This fried and ground spices add depth and flavor the this recipe.
Poricha kootu | Vegetable stew in Roasted spices
- 1 large carrot chopped
- 1/2 cup Beans log slices
- 1/2 cup flat beans
- 1/2 cup Pumpkin chopped
- 1/4 cup peas
- 2 med Indian eggplant cut to chunks
- 1/2 cup Ivy gourd/Tinda cut to chunks
- 2.5 tbs Kootu Podi ( quick recipe in the text above)
- 1/2 cup cooked Toor dal ( take about 4 to 6 Tbs of toor dal and cook till mushy)
- 2 tbs Almonds
- 1 tsp Jeera/cumin
- 4 to 5 red chilies + Bedegai chilis.
- 1 tbs Mustard seeds
- 2 tsp coconut oil would be best
- 1 tsp Urad dal
- 2 tsp Curry leaves
- Asafetida – a pinch
- Wash and Chop all vegetables into cubes and cook it in turmeric water for 10 mins.
- Rinse and pressure cook toor dal for up to 2-3 whistles. You can also cook the veggies along with the dal in a separate pan with little less water.
- Meanwhile, grind the almonds or coconut, green chilies and cumin seeds into a smooth paste.
- Once the dal and veggies are cooked well remove if from the cooker and let it cool for few mins. Add the ground coconut masala and let the kootu simmer for 5 mins in low flame.
- In a heavy bottom pan add little bit oil and then add the cooked veggies and the dal along with the ground kootu paste.
- If the gravy is thickening too fast add plain water to thin it down. Do't over cook as the veggies are already cooked.
- When the mix start to froth up add in the kootu podi and give it a quick mix. in 2-3 mins turn off the gas and let the mixture stand.
- Heat oil for seasoning and add the seasoning ingredients. Once mustard starts to splutter and the hing is fried in the oil add the tempering to the kootu mix
- The aroma is simply amazing
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