In the second of our new recipes for National Vegetarian Week is Avial (or aviyal). A delicious mixed vegetable curry in a thick coconut and yoghurt sauce, originating in Kerala, but which is now eaten widely across South India, especially at festive occasions and weddings. My version of avial has a lighter sauce but is packed with all the flavour, colour and nutrients. Avial can be made with many different vegetables, so once you have mastered the technique, you can create your perfect combination.
200g Carrots (cut into batons)
200g Potato (cut into batons)
Large handful of curly Kale (chopped coarsely)
50g Chestnut mushrooms (cut in half)
One white onion (long thick slices)
2 cups water (500ml)
5 cm cube of ginger
One and a half teaspoon ground cumin
300 ml of natural yoghurt
Two green chillies
Half teaspoon salt
One tablespoon of coconut oil.
- Bring the water to the boil in a saucepan, add the carrot onion and potato, reduce the heat to a simmer for 5 mins or until the vegetables are almost cooked through. Add a little extra hot water from the kettle to maintain the level of water in the pan
- Place the chopped curly kale, mushrooms, and sweetcorn on top of the other vegetables and simply allow to steam for 3-4 mins, before stirring all the vegetables together
- Meanwhile, put the grated coconut, ginger and chilli in a electric blender (or pestle and mortar) with the coconut oil and a little water and grind to a paste
- Add this coconut paste to the cooked vegetables, together with the ground cumin, salt and simmer for 2 mins
- Stir in the plain yoghurt and gently heat and stir through the vegetables
Avial is particularly delicious served with fragrant basmati rice. Enjoy !
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