My absolute favourite vegetarian dish from Kerala; there’s no way an Onam sadya can be complete without an avial.
I originally intended to put up recipes for all the dishes that traditionally form a part of the Onam sadhya (feast). But unfortunately, I could not. Now that Onam is over and I have had the chance to prepare all these dishes once again, I was able to document it better this time from a blogging perspective. I do know that these might not come in use this year if you intend to make it only for the sadhya but the best part is that all these dishes are great vegetarian recipes that can be prepared for everyday meals. So here is the first one….avial!
Among all the dishes that make up this sumptuous feast, avial remains my all-time favourite. The culinary marriage of the vegetables with the yoghurt-coconut blend is simply to die for! Now, I have had three different version of this dish – the ingredients remain largely the same but the texture varies.
Some people like to prepare it without the yoghurt/curd and just the coconut paste lending a grainy texture to the dish. Some like to add a little curd which still lets the grainy coconut texture to shine through. At home, we prepare it with lots of curd giving the dish a smooth, creamy texture. There’s nothing to beat a bowl of avial…any day. And strangely, I like to eat this dish with chappathis instead of rice.
For more Onam recipes; visit this article.
- Drumstick – ½ cup
- Plantain – ½ cup
- Pumpkin – ½ cup
- Potato – ½ cup
- Carrot – ½ cup
- Beans – ½ cup
- green chilli – 4 slit
- turmeric powder – ½ tsp
- salt – to season
- curry leaves – a handful
- coconut – 5 tbsp grated
- jeera – ½ tsp
- curd – enough to make thick gravy
- coconut oil – 2 tbsp.
- Cut all the vegetables lengthwise into long strips. (The shape matters!)
- Cook all the vegetables in a pressure cooker with turmeric powder, slit green chillies, salt, curry leaves; no water required. Cook for 1 whistle or 5 minutes, whichever happens first. If you do not have a pressure cooker, then cook in a regular pot; add just enough water to cook the vegetables.
- Grind coconut and cumin seeds with a bit of water to a fine paste and add to the boiled vegetables.
- Add enough curd to this, stirred through to get a creamy consistency.
- Prepare tadka or tempering by heating coconut oil and curry leaves. Switch off the flame and add a few drops of water to this and then pour over the dish. There will be some spluttering so make sure the flame is off.
Was browsing through for grocers in melb for veggies nd all to prepare keralite dishes..came across some awesome recipes in ur blog!!
A lil bt me…we were settled in dubai moved here recently..a bit too recent 🙂 Is there any place out here where u get freshly grated coconuts??
B/n te avial recipe looks yummy and is just like hw we make at home…but we do add yellow cucumber as well..where do u get them out here??
Hi Indie, welcome to Melb. Dubai is home for me too because that’s where I lived for the first 14 years of my life. Freshly grated coconut (I know u get it in Dubai) is not available here so u have to grate it yourself or get the frozen ones. Yup, it was hard for me to accept that. And I didnt add yellow cucumber because it’s not available most of the time…not the Kerala variety. You get other varieties though or again go for frozen. Which part of Melb are u in? Queen Victoria, Dandenong market and the vegetable shop inside Dandenong plaza does a good job with many native Indian veggies.
Thanks for replying!! So that means we do get whole coconuts but comes with it the hassle of breaking nd grating…but still worth a try once in a while when ur taste buds crave for something authentic!!
Yea me too!! Been in dxb for long..After we came dwn here I was telling mum that nothing compares to all those keralite stuff we get in dxb…its more like a “posh kerala”…lol…tats hw I put it across to her..
But tats just bt te keralite stuff…nothing beats the produce here….its beautiful, fresh nd Yum!! U get all the goodness from all te world’s to make those yummy recipes for which u wud have to go like “Ohh man…Spinneys etc!” I am starting to settle dwn nd with these scrumptious recipes in ur blog, I am all set to start my cooking journey..Just one thing that might reduce te pace is a lil 10 month old beside me!! 🙂
Mallus form the least number in terms of demographics here so dont expect the Dubai feel….life and people are extremely different. Which part of Melbourne are you placed in and are you working? We live in Dandenong….do come home sometime; would love to meet your 10 month old. Getting back to coconuts, I buy the fresh ones, grate and freeze it to use whenever I want. And next time I go to Kerala, will bring the table top grinder which has the grater attachment; it will be easier after that.
Sry for replying so late…my lil one was dwn with fever 🙁
We stay in Box hill..wud love to meet u!! Hopefully someday when we plan a visit to dandenong I will inform u beforehand nd we cud meet up!!or nytime u cum dwn to our place do make a visit!! Cheers to new beginnings!! 🙂
Sure, that sounds like a plan. Enjoy your time here….
Was reading about the coconuts. In Coles you get a blue packet of shredded coconut( not desicated).. A friend of mine told me about it as i was so lost without having coconuts on hand. Try it. It’s awesome and tasty too. I use that for all my cooking purposes now. It dsnt give that after taste like the desicated one.
It’s the Coles brand itself. Give a try and let me know. Hassle free.
Frozen right? There are plenty of good frozen ones but fresh was what I was talking about.
Thanks souch Dhanya for this post :). I never knew avial was this simple! Will certainly make it soon!
it is really easy dear. In Kerala, u find 2 styles – the dry and the creamy. The only difference is in the quantity of curd used. I love this creamy version and I love to eat it with hot phulkas than rice.
One of my favourite dishes…. I was planning to cook and blog a full Sadya; but, alas, it a case of the best laid plans…..
no worries….there’s always next year.