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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