A marriage of earthy ingredients with ancient techniques forms this feast of vintage Chettinad recipes. Try these traditional recipes from the villages of the South coast which will leave your mouth watering long after the plates are emptied!
Chinna Urrulai Kizhangu Masala (Spicy Baby Potato)
Small potato 1/2 Kg
Bay leaf 1
Cinnamon stick 1/2 inch piece
Aniseed (saunf) 1 tsp
Curry leaves – a few
Onions, peeled and chopped – 2
Tomatoes, chopped –3
Chilli powder 1 tbsp
Coriander powder 1 tbsp
Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
Coriander leaves, chopped – a few
Water 1 cup
Salt 2 tsp
Oil 5 tbsp
Boil and peel potatoes.
Heat oil in a pan.
Add bay leaf, cinnamon stick, cloves, aniseed and curry leaves. Sauté for a minute.
Add onions and cook until transparent. Add tomatoes and cook until soft.
Add chilli powder, coriander powder and turmeric powder.
Stir until oil separates. Now add potatoes and salt.
Add a little water. Bring to a boil.
Reduce the heat to a simmer until gravy thickens and clings to potatoes.
Garnish with coriander leaves. Serve as a side dish with rice.
Kari Kola Varuval (Spicy Mutton Balls)
Minced Mutton 1/2 Kg
Dried red chilli 4
Aniseed (saunf) 1/2 tsp
Poppy seed (Khuskhus) 2 tsp
Bengal gram dal (Channa dal) 1/2 cup
Green chilli 3
Shallots (Small onions) peeled and chopped – 12
Garlic, peeled and chopped –1 bulb
Coconut, grated – 1/2 cup
Oil 2 tbsp + 2 cups
Salt 2 tsp
Heat oil in a kadai (wok).
Add cloves, dried red chillies, aniseed, poppy seed, roasted Bengal gram, green chillies, shallots, garlic and coconut. Fry for a few minutes.
Heat 1 tablespoon of oil. Add mince and stir. Cook until meat is just done and liquid has evaporated but still moist.
Add salt. Remove from heat. Cool on a rack.
Grind to a smooth consistency (without water) in a grinder or blender. Remove.
Add egg. Make into balls using a light hand, as they tend to become hard.
Deep fry in hot oil until golden brown.
Serve as a snack or at lunch or dinner.