Wednesday, 29 August 2012

"Erissery" - Onam Special - A Kerala Delicacy

Onam is the biggest and the most important festival of the state of Kerala. It is a harvest festival and is celebrated with joy and enthusiasm all over the state by people of all communities. According to a popular legend, the festival is celebrated to welcome King Mahabali, whose spirit is said to visit Kerala at the time of Onam. 
'Onasadhya' is the grand feast served during the celebration of Onam in Kerala. It is served in Banana leaves. It consists of around 30 different dishes.
Today being Onam I made one of the side-dishes served for this grand feast. It is made of raw plantains and Yams and is called "Erissery".
"Erissery" is also made with pumpkin and red oriental beans. 
I made this dish after getting a few tips from my ex-manager who is also a very good friend of mine. She celebrates Onam and is an expert in making this.
Serves 3
Ingredients: 
Yam - 100 gms
Big raw banana - 1 no
Pepper powder - 1tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/4tsp
Water - 1cup
Salt to taste
Grated coconut - 1/2 coconut
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
Coconut oil - 1 tbsp (you can use any other oil but coconut oil gives authentic Kerala taste)
Mustard seeds - 1/4tsp
Urad dal - 1/4 tsp
Dry red chillies - 3
Curry leaves - 5

Method:
Split the banana lengthwise into 3 pieces. Do not peel the skin. Cut it into small pieces.
Boil banana with pepper powder, turmeric powder and salt in 1 cup of water. 
Grind the coconut, cumin seeds and green chillies without adding any water and keep aside.
Now take a heavy bottomed pan, keep on medium heat, add oil, then the mustard seeds and urad dal, allow to crackle.
Add the dry red chillies and fry for 2 minutes, then add the coconut paste and the curry leaves and fry till they change color. Now add the boiled banana and yam pieces and mix well. Boil on high heat till almost dry.
Serve hot with steaming rice and other dishes in the Onam Sadhya meal.

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