Girija Paati’s Kerala Style Avial (Mixed Vegetable Coconut Stew)
Avial or mixed vegetable stew immediately brings to mind traditional Keralite meals. Avial is typically made with generous lashing of coconut and coconut oil, as well as a cacophony of vegetables that come together in a surprisingly harmonious melody.
Girija Paati makes a few different types of avial, however the Keralite version is the one that brings back memories of her ancestral home in Palakkad, a small town on the border of Tamilnadu and Kerala.
- White Pumpkin – ½ kg
- Brinjal – 100 gms
- Kottavarangai /Cluster Beans – 50 gms
- Karamani / Cowpea Beans – 50 gms
- Yam – 100 gms
- Drumstick – 1
- Vazhakkai / Raw Banana – 1
- Snake Gourd – 100 -150 gms
- Carrot* - 1
- Raw Mango – ¾ (If it’s not too sour, you can use a whole one)
- Green chillies – 10 - whole
- Zeera – ½ tsp
- Coconut – 1 - grated
- Coconut Oil – 2 tbsp
- Curry Leaves – for seasoning
- Turmeric – ¼ teaspoon
- Rock salt – to taste
- Slightly Sour Curd – 2 tbsp, depending on the preferred level of sourness
* *Not traditionally used, however if you do not get all the vegetables it is a good addition
- Cut all the vegetables into 2-inch long pieces except the green chillies
- In a vessel, add all the cut vegetables, the turmeric and 1 large glass of water and set to boil
- Once it starts boiling, lower the flame, cover with a lid and let the vegetables cook
- Grind the green chillies, coconut and zeera to a coarse paste, add water as required for grinding
- Add the paste to the cooked vegetables, add rock salt, allow to cook for about 10 minutes or till all the ingredients come together
- Switch of the flame, add the coconut oil and curry leaves and cover
- Before serving, add the curd, mix well and serve
We normally pair Avial with hot rice and ghee or with Adai (lentil dosa) and a side of curd topped with Girija Paati’s Idli Milagai Podi.
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