Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Okra / Vendakka Pachadi

 my version

Okra or Lady's fingers (Vendaka/bhindi), prepared in thick coconut and yogurt gravy. A side dish that goes well with rice and even chapattis. Some like the coconut flavour to stand out, but, I personally like the yogurt. By the way, I'm a big fan of yogurt and have to have a little with all my Indian meals, but, not while in Kerala. I don't know why, but the yogurt in Kerala is a bit too sour.

Ingredients :

Okra (finely chopped)

3 cups
Coconut oil

2-3 tablespoons
Mustard seeds

1/2 teaspoon
Cumin seeds

1/2 teaspoon
Dried red chillies

4-5 nos.
Curry leaves

2 stems
Asafoetida powder

a pinch

1 medium

2 cloves

5cm piece
Green chillies

2 nos.
Crushed pepper

1/4 teaspoon
Coconut milk

1 cup

1 cup

1 cup or more

To taste.

Tempering is usually done after the cooking process in this recipe. But, like I've said earlier, I personally prefer it at the beginning. The dish looks more appealing when it's done after, but, I'd go in for the infused flavour and aroma :)

Preparation Method :

In a wok, heat coconut oil. Crackle the mustard seeds.

Add the cumin seeds, red chilli, curry leaves and the asafoetida powder. 

Add the finely chopped onion, garlic, ginger and green chillies and some salt and sauté for a couple of seconds.

Then, add the Okra and keep sautéing until the sliminess or glueyness disappears.

Add in some freshly crushed pepper.

Pour in the coconut milk and boil until the liquid reduces. Keep sautéing to prevent curdling.

Pour in the water and bring to a boil.
Turn of the flame, and add the beaten yogurt, sautéing continuously to prevent curdling.

If you like tempering after the preparation, then this is the time to garnish the curry with the tempering. But, you can skip the cumin seeds and asafoetida powder in that case.

Serves 3-4

Try it, and let me know how it worked for you! :)

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