Sunday, 17 January 2016

Avial !

Avial (Mixed vegetable stew) is a famous dish down south, mainly from the state of Kerala.  Though it varies slightly from different regions the basic idea is to cook loads of mixed veggies together and then simmer it in freshly ground coconut. In Kerala, the famous Onam sadhya is imcomplete without this dish. In tamilnadu, Avial is generally paired with Adai (Mixed Lentil Dosa). The veggies used also varies when compared to the Kerala avial. Veggies like Yam (Senai), Raw banana etc are predominantly used in Kerala Style avial and there is no much of tempering given except for some coconut oil poured at last on the dish.
Veggies like carrot, beans, potato and peas are recent introductions to Avial. Many other veggies like Pumpkin, broad beans, cucumber etc can also be added to this dish. 

To Pressure cook

  • 1 Drumstick
  • 2 Brinjals
  • 1/2 Raw banana
  • 6 - 7 French Beans
  • 12 - 15 Cluster Beans
  • 1 Potato
  • 2 Carrots
  • 1/4 cup Green Peas (Fresh or Frozen)
  • salt as needed
  • a pinch of turmeric

To Grind

  • 1/2 cup Fresh Coconut
  • 3 - 4 Green Chillis
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds

To Temper

  • 2 tsp Oil 
  • 1/2 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • a pinch of Asafoedita
  • Curry leaves
  • 2 Broken Red Chillis


  • Curd / Yogurt (1/4 cup)

  • Chop Drumsticks, brinjals (eggplant) and raw banana and keep them immersed in water.
  • Wash and chop carrots, potatoes, french beans and cluster beans.

  • In a pressure cooker take all the vegetables pour water just to immerse them. 
  • Add salt and turmeric powder (very little) and pressure cook for 1 - 2 whistles.

  • Grind together the coconut, green chillis and cumin seeds to a smooth paste adding water.

  • Once the pressure is released, take the pressure cooked veggies (along with the water its cooked) in a kadai on stove top, and add the fresh/frozen green peas.
  • Add the ground coconut paste, adjust water and let it simmer for 5 minutes.

  • Add yogurt/ curd and keeping flame in med - low, give a mix and make sure the curd doesnt curdle.
  • Meanwhile heat oil in a small pan/ kadai and add mustard seeds. Once they crackle add cumin , hing and broken red chilis and curry leaves (if u have).
  • When the avial somes to a slight rolling boil, turn off stove, pour this tadka on it and immediately close it so that the flavors don't escape.


  • Adjust the number of chillis as per your spice level.
  • Try using fresh coconut for best results. You can also add coconut milk (that comes in tin) in place of freshly ground coconut.
  • Make your own choice of veggies as per the availability.
  • Curd can be replaced by raw mango pieces or tamarind pulp.
  • Use coconut oil to do the tempering.
  • Serve with hot rice and papad. Or with ADAI, the classic combo.

With Love,

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