A very different and interesting Vegetarian Fish Curry recipe – Chettinadu Saiva Meen Kuzhambu with step-wise pictures. Make this one-pot kuzhambu/gravy recipe as a side for rice, idli or dosa.
Today’s recipe is a very different and interesting one, that is quite popular from Chettinadu region in Tamilnadu. Known as Saiva Meen Kuzhambu – literally meaning Vegetarian Fish Gravy, it is made with Banana Blossom. I have heard a lot about this recipe and had been wanting to give it a try since forever. One of the weekends before Deepavali, I had made this for lunch along with some hot rice and it was a huge hit. First off, it is unique as it uses the Banana Blossom Florets as it is and that’s why it looks like small fish in the gravy. What I liked the most about the gravy is how easy it was to make.
For making this Chettinadu Saiva Meen Kuzhambu, I used my small pressure cooker and all it needed was that one pot. This recipe relies heavily on coconut milk and that’s what makes it really delicious. You can make this without the coconut milk but the gravy wouldn’t turn creamy. So, here is the only task that’s time consuming – cleaning banana blossom. For people new to cooking, this might be daunting and confusing. There are a lot of tutorials available on youtube. You just have to discard the stamens and the small petal kind of thing at the bottom of the floret. And one tip to keep the blossom from turning dark is to soak it in buttermilk until it is ready to use. So, here is how I made the Kuzhambu. Check out other Chettinadu recipes.
How to make Chettinadu Saiva Meen Kuzhambu | Vegetarian Fish Gravy | Vazhaipoo Kuzhambu –
Detailed step-wise picture recipe of making Chettinadu Saiva Meen Kuzhambu | Vegetarian Fish Gravy | Vazhaipoo Kuzhambu –
In a 2-3L pressure cooker, heat gingelly oil and add cumin seeds. As they splutter, add fresh curry leaves.
Now add finely chopped onions and fry until translucent.
Next add all the spice powders – turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder and red chilli powder. Cook for 2-3 mins until the raw smell is gone.
Add the cleaned banana blossom florets. Mix well.
After cooking for 3-4 mins on low flame and the masala is coated well, add salt needed for the gravy. Cook for another minute. Add 1/2 cup water.
Next add tamarind extract and mix well. Continue cooking the gravy.
Pour the coconut milk while the gravy is on low flame, mix well.
As the gravy comes to a slow boil, close the lid of the pressure cooker and cook on medium heat for 2 whistles.
Let the pressure subside naturally and then open the lid. The oil should be separated and the banana blossom florets should be cooked.
Serve hot with rice and any side dish of your choice.
- I used store bought coconut milk powder – mixed 4 tbsp of powder with 1 cup of warm water. You can extract coconut milk freshly too.
- If the gravy is watery, it can be thickened with 1 tsp rice flour mixed in few tsp of water and boiling for a couple of mins.
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