Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Cabbage koottu - supreme comfort food

Last night felt like a "home" food night - classic south indian, like my mum makes. Since we didn't get a chance to do our grocery trips this last weekend, I started poking around in the fridge to find something I could work with. A cabbage! Yay! I love cutting cabbage! *so* much of fun :)
Cabbage koottu was always a favorite growing up, about on par with onion sambar and mor kozhambu. I love the funny (almost stinky!) smell of cabbage cooking - very nostalgic. Ok, so cabbage koottu it was going to be. I also found some baby brinjals and dutch potatoes that I could work with. I poke around and found this posting on Indira's blog, figured I could rework it a little bit! Thanks, Indira :)

Cabbage Koottu

Servings: 4

3/4 medium green cabbage - chopped into 1"-2" long shreds
1 cup cooked tual daal
2 T channa dal - boiled till cooked (but not mushy)
1 small ball of tamarind

1 t sesame oil
1 t mustard
1 t urad daal
2 red chillies
1/2 t asafoetida
7-8 curry leaves

1.5 T coriander seeds
2 red chillies
2 T grated coconut

Chopped cilantro
a few fresh pomegranate seeds

Roast the masala ingredients and grind to a coarse powder.
Soak the tamarind in 1/2 cup of hot water till the juices can be completely extracted. Squeeze out the tamarind and save the water.
Heat the oil in a wok and add the seasoning.
Once the mustard sputters, add the tamarind water and turmeric.
Once the water boils, add the cabbage and cook covered for 7-8 minutes.
Add the cooked channa daal and stir for a couple of minutes.
Now, toss in the tuar daal along with the masala and salt and simmer for about 5 minutes just so the flavors can blend.

Garnish with cilantro and pomegranate seeds (I've never tried these before - the sweet crunchiness was a perfect complement to the tart and spice of the koottu).

Baby Brinjals and Potato curry

Servings: 4

7-8 baby brinjals
5 dutch potatoes
1 t sesame oil
1 t cumin seeds
1/2 t turmeric
1.5 T sambar powder

Chop the potatoes into long pieces (4 per potato). Cut off the stems of the brinjals and make a plus cut at the tops (just like for stuffed brinjals).
In a wide skillet, heat the oil and toss in the cumin seeds.
Once browned, add the potatoes and sprinkle some water. Cook covered for about 6-7 minutes. I liked the idea of roasting the potatoes instead of boiling them just so they could be more crispy.
Once the potatoes are parboiled, add the brinjals along with the sambar powder, turmeric and salt. Cook covered for about 6-8 minutes till both the potatoes and brinjals are done and have absorbed the spices. You could optionally simmer for another minute (uncovered) in case any water needs to evaporate.

Simple, yet delicious - seems like eggplant behaves best when left to its own devices :)


Siri said...

Awesome pics dear..:D.. the brinjal-potato curry is very refreshing.. thanks to u n Indira.:)

Nabeela said...

nice recipe! I love cabbage too....don't know why people hate its smell!

Superchef said...

i love brinjal n potato!! delicious recipe.. love ur blog..lotta interesting yet easy recipes! :)

Asha said...

Great recipes Kay, looks delicious!:)


Wow kootu and baby brinjal,potato curry...looks delicious...:))

Sirisha Kilambi said...

The potato curry looks mouth-watering...am not a very big fan of kootu though :-)

Timepass said...

Wow, yummy spread

Sandeepa said...

beautiful pics and you sure have lot of stuff in the refrigerator even if you didn't do your grocery :)

Sivani said...

Oh, what a find! Thank you so much for leaving a comment on my blog: that was the trail that led me here. I love it - your presentation and your range.

You're going directly onto my blogroll :-)

ANI said...

That is a lovely recipe and I am surprised as how you have time to write so many posts almost 1 in 2 days. Keep it up :)