Monday, August 11, 2008

AVIAL – Vegetables in Coconut and Curd Gravy


Avial is a mixture of selected boiled vegetables cooked in coconut-curd base. A curry-like thick Avial (Variation 1) can be relished as a side dish with the main course. The gravy-like Avial (Variation 2), can be mixed with rice. This type of Avial is served with Aapams and Adais (both are variations of pancakes) in many restaurants.
Avial lends a special festive touch to even a simple meal. Poosnikai (Ash gourd), Murungakai (Drumstick) and Chena Kizhangu (Elephant yam) are the key vegetables in the preparation of Avial. In addition to this, you can also use one or more of these vegetables as well - brinjal, marrow, french beans, carrots, raw banana, potatoes, field beans, cucumber, and broad beans.
Care has to be taken while cutting the yam to prevent itching and irritation. A thin coating of oil on the hand, or rubbing the hands with tamarind juice will help. A friend who tried in earnest to help out in the kitchen, created a ruckus when she saw what she thought was her skin peeling off after cutting marrows. It’s just the juice of marrow that had dries into a thin film on hands, which can be virtually peeled off! Beet roots and Raw Bananas will leave a black stain on the finger tips after cutting. Guarding your hands before chopping vegetables prevents a lot of unpleasantness after good cooking. Happy cooking without stains and pains!
AVIAL - Variation 1
Vegetables:Cut the following vegetables into two inch long strips.
Ash gourd -1 cup
Drumsticks - 1 cup
Elephant Yam – 1cup
Carrots -1 cup
French Beans – 1 cup
For the gravy:Curds – 1 cup
Freshly grated coconut – 1 cup
Green chillies – 2
Salt - 1 ½ tsps
For seasoning:
Coconut oil – 2 tsps
Curry leaves – a few

1. Grind grated coconut and green chillies into a smooth and thick paste.
2. Boil the chopped vegetables with just enough water and salt, to ensure that the shape of vegetables is retained, and water is evaporated. Avoid overcooking  the vegetables into a mash!
3. Heat coconut oil in a pan and add the curry leaves.
4. Add the ground coconut paste and toss for a minute.
5. Add the cooked vegetables and salt and toss till you get a pleasant aroma.
6. Remove from flame and mix in the curd.
    Enjoy this a side dish or a curry.
AVIAL - Variation 2 - with gravy
The ingredients for this avial are the same as above. The only additional ingredients, in this Avial are 1tsp of rice flour, and additional cups of water. 
1. Boil all vegetables, with salt as given in the recipe above, using more water.
2. Grind grated coconut and green chillies with a tea spoon of rice flour.
3. Mix the ground paste with curd, and an additional cup of water.
4. Remove the boiling vegetables from the flame, and mix in the coconut-curd paste.
5. Add salt to taste, if required.
6. Set this on a low flame again. Simmer up to boiling point, and immediately remove from flame. 


Note: Over boiling causes the curd to break.
7. Heat the coconut oil, fry the curry leaves, and season the Avial.

Enjoy with aapam, adai , steaming hot rice or puligare.

6 Post your Comments:

Indian Khana said...

Avial looking too are rite, we too make with mustard oil, turmeric and salt. But as I mention in the blog..with masala powder was a trial and it was can try sometime ;)

A_and_N said...

The avial looks superb! the variation with rice flour is new to me. Certainly makes it healthier as the rice flour could be substituted for some of the coconut :)

Unknown said...

Your avial looks delicious,reminded me I haven't made this for quite a while now.This is our favorite sunday lunch when the family is together,avial rasam and appalam with rice.The best combination :)

Unknown said...

Oops forgot to mention,yep Cilantro and coriander leaves are the same thing :)

YOSEE said...

Avial with hot rice and poriccha appalam ! Yummy !. I always make it with gravy. Once in some restaurant thy served avial with adai. Nope ! dint relish that combo !

Sanitha Cochin said...

This sounds great. And i haven,t tried the curd variety yet. eventhough i used it in small quantity. But will definitely try this one. my daughter likes aviyal very much. so next pre school day this one will be a good idea.