Koorkai (Sir Kizhangu or Chinese Potato) and Vazhakkai (Plantain) Mezhukkuparati
(South Indian Stir Fry Veg)
A favourite since Childhood, my Ma made this during winters (best to consume Dec – Jan) along with Jeera Rasam. According to my Ma, Mezhukkuparati which is nothing but stir fry veggies in coconut oil minus any masalas or chili powder is the best thing to consume when suffering from fever or any illness. So, when we had viral bouts due to climate change or cold etc, this vegetable along with some jeera milagu (pepper cumin) rasam and a dollop of nei or ghee was the simple solution.
These tubers (Koorkai) look like eggs or a baby potato and are usually consumed most in Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. This plant is used for treating stomach disorders, vomiting, diarrhea, mouth and throat infection, abdominal pain, wounds, burns, insect bites and other sensory disorders. Builds body’s immunity levels too.
The best part about these tubers are they are incredibly filling but not the kind that leads to bloating etc as in the case of potatoes some times. Unlike other South Indian Stir Fries, these also don’t need grated coconut. I mean you can add them but most prefer mezhukkuparati without the inclusion of coconut for ease of digestion and light on stomach especially when one is consuming antibiotics etc, you need something that gives you strength to cope up with the fatigue and the body aches that come with the viral infection.
So, try making this lovely and simple, no fuss vegetable that is just pure comfort in a bowl. If you are looking for some other South Indian Stir fry recipes, then do check the recipes (1) Beetroot Thoran (2) Drumsticks Poriyal
Recipe for Koorkai (Sir Kizhangu or Chinese Potato) and Vazhakkai (Plantain) Mezhukkuparati
Preparation Time – 30 mins
Cooking Time – 15 to 20 minutes
Serves – 2 nos.
- Koorkai – ½ kg (Sir Kizhangu in Tamil, Chinese potato)
- Plantain – 2 nos. (Raw Banana, Kaccha Kela in Hindi & Vazhakkai in Tamil)
- Mustard seeds – ½ tsp
- Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
- Whole Red chillies – few broken (optional)
- Coconut oil – 1.5 tblsp
- Curry leaves – few sprigs
- Salt as per taste
- Wash Koorkai or Chinese Potatoes under running water for atleast 10 minutes. If you are the kind who doesn’t like wasting water like me, I recommend soaking them for 10 minutes so that the layer of mud can easily be washed away with less water. Since these tubers are loaded with mud, ensure you wash the same pretty well.
- Peel the skin of the plantain and cut them into big chunks.
- Pressure cook the koorkai and the plantain separately without any water for atleast 4-5 whistles.
- Once slightly cool, peel the skin off the Koorkai and keep aside.
- Heat some coconut oil in a kadhai or heavy bottom non-stick pan, add mustard seeds and allow it to crackle.
- Add the turmeric powder, whole red chillies (optional), curry leaves and then add both the koorkai and the plantain along with some salt as per taste. Mix the vegetables well, lower the flame and let it cook uncovered for atleast 10 minutes.
- The vegetables would nicely turn roasted in the low heat. Once they develop slight brown bits on their skin, switch off the flame and serve the vegetable piping hot along with some rasam and rice drizzled with ghee or clarified butter.
Recipe notes –
- Mezhukkuparatti can be made with a variety of vegetables like broad beans, yam (suran) and purple yam (Kand) etc. I love having this during winters as the variety of vegetables are lovely in the market.
- Ideal to consume this for lunch time as these vegetables take some time to digest as they are fibre rich.
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