My kids love beetroot. So usually it’s not a fuss making them eat it. They love the upperi and Azza always asks for “red pooris” in case she is in a mood for some. 😀 I love using beetroots in bakes – it makes cakes amazingly moist, like this chocolate cake or these brownies.
Anybody who has eating Keralite food would always think of a sadya – that meal on a long banana leaf, with rice and then so many curries. My colleague P once indicated a very funny incident when she was invited by a fellow classmate for a sadya. As they were seated in front of the leaf, she cringed seeing the quantity of each dish they were dropping off at the leaf – it’s never a huge quantity, mostly it’s a spoonful or slightly more. She didn’t notice the amount of dishes that were there. Once the rice, sambar, moru and rasam poured in, she was a bit taken aback by how filling the meal was and how she couldn’t finish it! 😀 It happens to me too, I get so excited about eating it all but finishing it off to the fullest is definitely a task!
Pachadi is one dish that is served for the sadya. It is a very easy side dish that involves yogurt and ground coconut, taken in varying proportions and is slightly sweetened by the main ingredient. It is basically a raita but with a twist of coconut in it. Usually, pineapple pachadi is served, but we seem to love the beetroot one. I have adapted the recipe from one of the best resources for Keralite cuisine, Kothiyavunnu. You can see we had our rice just with this super easy curry. If you get your food processor to do the job of grating the beetroot, and then grind the coconut, the rest of the gravy comes together in a breeze. It is really apt for those lazy moments and even when you are in a mood to serve a lot of gravies! These can be made in advance and kept in the fridge for around a week without it being spoiled too – I must say that they taste amazing while cold! Off to the recipe…
- 400 gm beetroot peeled and grated
- 2 tbsp coconut oil separated
- 1 cup yogurt whipped
- Salt to tatste
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 sprig curry leaves
- 4-6 dried chilli leaves
- FOR GRINDING:
- 1/4 cup grated coconut
- 1 inch pc ginger
- 2 green chillies
- Heat a tbsp of oil in a saucepan. Add the grated beetroot with some salt and a dash of water and cook till the raw smell is gone.
- Grind the coconut, ginger and chillies till smooth and set aside.
- Once the beetroot is cooked, add the yogurt and ground paste and mix well. Adjust seasoning.
- Just heat the mixture and switch off immediately - do not boil.
- In a small saucepan, heat the rest of the oil. Splutter the mustard seeds. Briefly fry the curry leaves and chillies. Add in to the pachadi. Serve hot with rice.