Thursday, August 22, 2013

Urllakizhangu / Kizhangu Ishtew / Kerala Ishtu / Potato Stew

This stew is normally made to go with Appam for breakfast in many Malayali homes. Appam ishtew is a typical breakfast item from Kerala. Although nowadays this breakfast is mostly limited to weekends since weekday mornings mean rushed breakfasts. Appams can be paired off with chutney or potato stew or vegetable stew or egg roast or a varutharache curry (egg or vegetables). We mostly make urllakizhangu or kizhangu ishtu / ishtew (that's potato stew in Malayalam) at home, a practice that my mother-in-law follows. And a combination I have fallen in love with.
My mother makes an orange colored coconut chutney to go with appams at home. And after marriage, I have mostly made potato ishtew to go with the appam. This ishtew is different from the one prepared for a sadya (feast served on a banana leaf) in the sense that this has onions and is watery. The best thing about making potato stew is that you pile everything into the pan and leave it to cook without having to add ingredients (except coconut milk) in stages. So here goes the recipe:
Potato - 2
Green chillies - 2
Ginger - 1 inch
Coconut milk (thick) - 1/2cup
Curry leaves - 8-10
Coconut oil - 1tsp
Salt as per taste
Peel the potatoes, wash it and slice it into pieces, slit the green chillies, cut the ginger into juliennes and keep aside. Heat a pan add about a cup of water and add the potatoes, ginger, green chillies, curry leaves, a little salt and cook on medium heat. Check after about 10 minutes if the potatoes are almost done. Make sure the pan still has water and add 1 tablespoon of coconut milk and cook on low heat till the potatoes are completely done. Then add the rest of the coconut milk, adjust with more water if needed and let it come close to a boil. Drizzle coconut oil and a few curry leaves on top, close the lid and take off the heat.
Get the appams ready and serve the ishtew with it.
If using full coconut milk from a can or tetrapack, water it down (3 coconut : 1 water).
The lite coconut milk can be poured straight to the cooked potatoes.

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