Monday, July 1, 2013

Avial - Palakkad Iyer delicacy made with mixed vegetables

Avial rice with broccoli, avakai pickle and yogurt on the side
Around - Broccoli-pigeon peas, tender Pumpkin, Raw banana, 
Cooked vegetables and Avial 
3-4 cups when cut Pumpkin (mathan/perangikai/lal bhopla) light yellow and tender is preferred
3-4 cups when cut Winter melon/pushnikai/elavan/safed bhopla
3-4 Raw green bananas/vazhakai to yield 3-4 cups when cut
1 medium sized potato
2-3 sprigs of Curry leaves
3-4 cups of plain yogurt nicely blended or use thick buttermilk
Turmeric powder and salt to taste

To grind
1 and 1/2 cup grated coconut
10-12 spicy Thai green chillies

To season
1 tbsp coconut oil(taste to make sure it is not rancid)

  1. Cut the vegetables into finger thin and long pieces 1 and 1/2" long and 1/2 cm wide. Raw banana skin must be pared like you would the potatoes.
  2. In a deep wide mouth pan/vessel, add 3-4 cups of water, add curry leaves, turmeric and salt.
  3. Add the raw banana and potato first, bring it to boil and cook for a few minutes before adding the winter melon and the pumpkin which cook faster. Add sufficient water as shown in the image above.
  4. Cover and cook well. Lower the heat when done.
  5. Grind coconut and green chill, add it along with the yogurt to the cooked vegetables.  Add salt as needed..  Mix well and bring close to boiling.
  6. Switch off the beat before it reaches a rolling boil else the yogurt will split.
  7. Add the coconut oil and stir well
  8. Enjoy with steamed rice.
Broccoli side dish recipe can be found here - Tomato Rasam with Broccoli and Soybean vegetable...

Avial and savory pongal are a well known combination, find the pongal recipe here.. Savory and Sweet Pongal....
The above meal is my dysfunctional style of cooking traditional recipes learnt from mom.  

As a main dish avial is mixed with rice, so more gravy is needed.   Avial as a side dish is much thicker in consistency, reduce the water and yogurt quantity used while cooking. also add 1 tbsp of rice flour while grinding, it will help thicken the gravy.

Optional - You can add
 bitter gourd(parikai/pavakai/karela), snake gourd(podalangai), an drumstick(murungakai/shenga),....remember drumstick takes a long time to cook.  

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