Knol-Khol Kootu (Kohlrabi With Spiced Coconut Paste)
- 1/4 cup red lentils
- 2 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 to 3 green chillies (adjust as required)
- 1/4 cup dried grated coconut , loosely packed
- 1 large sized kohlrabi chopped into 3/4" cubes
- 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 sprig curry leaves
- salt to taste
- 1 1/2 tsp oil
- 1 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
- 1/2 to 1 tbsp coconut oil (optional)
Soak the red lentils in about 1/2 a cup of water for about half an hour. Drain the water and keep aside.
In a small pan, roast the cumin seeds over, low heat until it gives off an aroma. Do not brown.
Grind this with the green chillies and coconut with just enough water to a smooth paste. You can add the cumin seeds as they are, but roasting them gives the "curry" a better flavour and taste. Keep this paste aside.
Steam the cubed kohlrabi until tender.
If you don't want to steam the kohlrabi, follow this procedure.
Take a largish pan and heat the oil. Add the mustard seeds and let them splutter. Then add the cubed kohlrabi, the drained red lentils, turmeric powder, curry leaves, salt and a cup of water. Bring this to a boil, turn down the heat and cook till the kohlrabi is done.
If you have steam cooked or microwaved the kohlrabi like I do, then follow this procedure.
As above, take a largish pan and heat the oil. Add the mustard seeds and let them splutter.
Add the cooked kohlrabi, the drained red lentils, turmeric powder, curry leaves, salt and sprinkle a little water.
Stir everything together, and cook for a couple of minutes on medium heat.
Whichever method you used to cook the kohlrabi, from here the method of cooking is the same.
Add the spicy coconut paste and mix well. If the vegetable-coconut paste looks very dry, add about 1/8th (or a little more, if necessary) of a cup of water and cook for another couple of minutes till it comes together. The "kootu" should have the finished consistency of vegetable coated with a thick gravy and should not be watery.
Transfer the kootu to a serving dish and add the coconut oil (if using), then cover the dish and let it sit for about 15 minutes to allow the flavour of the coconut oil to develop.
Remove the lid, mix in the coconut oil and serve hot with rice, as a side dish.