Tuesday, April 18, 2006
Coriander powder or thokku
This is a family recipe, invented/learned by my mom and perfected under my dad's guidance (he is an arm-chair cook). We use the name 'sambaara puli' but it is actually a version of coriander powder/thokku. I have been eating this for years and it is a part of the care package when someone comes here from India. According to mom, this is a kerala dish. However, I am not sure about its origins. Anyway, the recipe yields 2 cups of dried powder-like chutney/thokku. It is ideal with yogurt rice, dosas or for making coriander rice.
I am so happy that cilantro is selling for $0.29 here. I can make this as often as I want. Unlike coriander thokku, this can stay for upto a month in the refrigerator. This is because all the water has been removed. You can also make it paste-like for a more moist texture.
2 bunches fresh cilantro, cleaned and dried completely
1 small piece tamarind, soaked in a tsp of water to soften a little
15 red chillies
2 T gram dal
2 T urad dal
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
pinch of hing
2 T oil
1 ts mustard seeds
1. The cilantro has to be cleaned and dried very well. For this, I leave the cleaned leaves outside overnight, exposed to air. That does it. Heat a skillet and dry roast red chilies, dals, hing and mustard seeds until mustard pops and dals are reddish. Powder coarsely.
2. Grind cilantro with tamarind until smooth.
3. Heat 2 T oil in a skillet, add mustard seeds and let them pop. Add the cilantro paste and saute until it turns a dark green. Now add the powder and saute, saute and saute some more until most of the water is eliminated. The mixture will now be on the way to becoming a brownish-green.
4. I recommend adding salt at this stage, since we can get a better idea of how much salt is required. Keep sauteeing on low heat, until oil sizzles around edges and mixture is dry paste/powder-like. You can decide at this stage when to remove from heat based on what consistency you want.
Posted by Mika at 12:09 PM