You may have noticed that I have not been actively posting over the past few weeks. This is because we have moved to a new country(in the middle of Europe). I am still adjusting to my new surroundings and tied up with the post-move chores. As a foodie this means tasting new food and experimenting. Unfortunately I still have not started taking photos in new place, as we are still in a temporary place with limited cooking space. But I’m eagerly waiting to capture and share all my new experiments with you all. God willing we hope to move into a permanent place soon.
This recipe is called varai in Tamil, is a Sri Lankan style stir fry. Similar dish is prepared in Kerala cuisine and is called “Thoran”. It simply means stir fried vegetables mixed with shredded coconut, dry red chili and curry leaves. You may use mustard and orid dhal or bengal gram to add color and nutty flavor to this stir fry. (Imagine carrot stir fry, with dark green curry leaves, red chilis and yellow gram. Wow what a healthy treat to your eyes and body!) You can make similar stir-fry with all kinds of vegetables. Some vegetables that I have used are leeks, grated beet root, grated carrot, square beans, long beans, green beans, green plantain, boiled potatoes, boiled tapioca. So that’s why I say you can do this stir fry with any vegetable of your choice. Also you can do this with any type of greens. One of my favorite greens ares kang kung cooked in this style. I serve it with rice.
2 tbsp Indian sesame oil (or any vegetable oil)
1 onion diced
Few curry leaves
2 red chilis diced
1 tsp of each mustard and cumin seeds
1 tbsp yellow gram
400g cabbaged thinly sliced ( you can also use purple cabbage or savoy cabbage for this recipe)
Pinch of turmeric powder
Heat oil in a non-stick pan, sauté onion, curry leaves and red chili for a minute till they are aromatic. Add mustard, cumin seeds and yellow gram. When mustard seeds start to splutter add cabbage, salt and turmeric.
Stir cabbage for 5 minutes till its cooked and water is evaporated.
Note: You may add shredded coconut to this stir -fry. Add them at stage 1, after you saute the aromatics. It gives mild sweetness to this dish.
Serving Suggestion: You can serve a good balanced meal by plating one cup of rice, a vegetable or green stir fry (varai) and a protein gravy curry. Here are some protein curry suggestions.
Soya Meat Tikka Masala
Paneer Tikka Masala
Dal Makani – Black Lentils in spicy cream sauce
Soy Marinated Curry Chicken