palya

summer garden palya

2nd July 2019

A palya which I have been making often, very simple, quick and based on what is in the garden at the moment; a handful of beans, small cabbages and a few small zucchinis. Feel free to change the vegetables to suit the season or availability. Great served over rice, with avocado and pickle or accompanied with a simple dal. 

summer garden palya

Preparation 30 minutes

Serves 4 

Use heaped spoon measurements.

ingredients 

2 cups/230g zucchinis

3 cups/170g cabbage

1 cup/150g green beans

¼ cup/60ml water

1 tsp fine rock salt

2 tsp jaggery/sugar

5 Tbsp dried shredded coconut

½ cup chopped coriander/fenugreek leaves

voggarane

4 Tbsp peanut/melted coconut oil

½ tsp black mustard seeds

1 Tbsp split channa dal

1 tsp cumin seeds

1 medium, mild dried red chillies, chopped

⅛ tsp hingu powder (asafoetida)

¼ tsp turmeric powder

20 fresh curry leaves

to serve

ghee

brown rice

sliced avocado

spicy pickle

preparation

1.  Chop the zucchini, cabbage and green beans into small uniformed pieces and measure the spices for the voggarane – set aside.

prepare the voggarane

2.  In a heavy-bottom skillet, over medium heat, pour in oil, add mustard seeds and channa dal; when they turn grey and the dal is golden-brown, turn down the heat, add cumin seeds, chillies, and asafoetida – fry for 30 seconds, then add the turmeric powder and curry leaves – fry for a few seconds longer.

3.  Add the vegetables, water, salt and jaggery – stir to combine, and cook uncovered on medium heat for 3 minutes – stirring regularly, then cover and cook until the vegetables have softened – 3 more minutes. 

4.  Turn off the heat and stir in the dried coconut and coriander. 

5.  Allow to sit for 5 minutes in order to cool slightly and for the flavours to be absorbed. Taste, adding more salt or jaggery, as needed.

Serve with brown rice drizzled with ghee.

sweet potato, carrot & kale palya

21st January 2010

Palya is a Kannada (South Indian language) word for a dry side dish made with any vegetable or a combination.  Palya is usually cooked in dry heat, which brings out the flavour of the vegetables when the natural sugars in the vegetables caramelize and the flavour is concentrated. Small pieces of uniformly cut vegetables – julienne thick or thin, diced, finely shredded, or in thin diagonal slices – are sautéed in a bit of ghee or oil in a heavy-bottomed pan until they are partially cooked and browned. When using vegetables like sweet potato, potato, beetroot or eggplant, I usually sprinkle them with a bit of water and cover them with a lid, and cook on low heat for 5 mins to soften them.

This is a photo of the sweet potatoes I dug up the other day. Unfortunately, they look a little worse for wear, but they taste sweet and delicious. I have had to come up with many dishes to use them in. This palya is a good one!

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These are some of my favourite palya combinations :

– Julienne sliced beetroot, small broccoli leaves and kale

– Julienne sliced carrot, yellow and green beans (I love the vibrant colours of orange, yellow and green)

– Cauliflower, potato and peas (lightly steam the potatoes and cauliflower beforehand)

– Julienne sliced cabbage, crumbled tofu and thinly sliced carrot

– Grated carrot and mung beans (as in the easy sprouting recipe)

– Donna came up with a nice combination of tofu, mung bean sprouts and grated sweet potato, which she will share with you later.

I served this with mung beans with Indian spices & lemon and brown rice.

sweet potato, carrot & kale palya

ingredients 

1 Tbsp ghee/peanut oil

½ tsp black mustard seeds

1 tsp cumin seeds

1 tsp rasam powder (mildly spiced)

1 small-medium sweet potato, cut into thin Julienne pieces

1 large carrot, cut into thin Julienne pieces

1 tsp jaggery/brown sugar

¼ cup dried shredded coconut, or fresh if available

100g kale thinly sliced – or use any green leaves. I sometimes use a combination of spinach, kale, and small broccoli leaves from the garden

salt to taste

fresh coriander leaves, chopped

preparation 

1.  Heat the ghee or oil in a skillet over medium heat; add mustard seeds and fry until they start to splutter and pop; add cumin seeds, and when they begin to darken, add the rasam powder – fry for a few seconds.

2.  Add carrot and sweet potato, mix well until the vegetables are well coated, cover with a lid and simmer for 10 mins, stirring often over low heat or until the sweet potato softens.  If you feel the mixture is too dry, sprinkle it lightly with water.

3.  When soft, add the jaggery and coconut, mixing well.

4.  Add the kale and continue cooking on low heat for a few minutes, stirring often; turn off the heat and leave covered for 10 mins or until the kale has wilted.

5.  Add the coriander and salt to taste.

Enjoy!

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