Ulli Theeyal is a typical Kerala dish using fried and ground coconut and is dark brown in colour.
Theeyal is a South Indian dish. It is quite similar to Sambar, another popular South Indian dish. Theeyal originates from the state of Kerala in South India, a region where coconut is often used in cuisine. Theeyal is made from a spice mixture consisting of roasted coconut, coriander seeds, dried red chili and fenugreek. All spices are ground to a paste and cooked in tamarind water with vegetables. When completed it look like a rich medium brown gravy and is normally mixed with rice.
Theeyal, which means “burnt dish,” is a typical Kerala dish featuring burnt coconut and is usually dark brown in color. It gets its color from browning of coconut and also from another ingredient, tamarind. In some parts of Kerala, theeyal is included in a traditional sadya menu. Vegetables used for Theeyal include Pearl onion or Shallot, Bitter melon, Potato, Eggplant, Okra, Zucchini, Raw Mango, Granny Smith.
- Shallots sliced into thin pieces- 115 nos
- Grated Coconut-1/2 cup
- Red Chilly Powder – 1 tsp
- Coriander Powder- 2 tsp
- Turmeric Powder-1/4 tsp
- Tamarind -small lemon sized
- Fenugreek Powder(Uluvappodi)- a pinch
- Mustard Seeds – 1/2 tsp
- Curry Leaves – a few
- Whole red chillies – 2
- Salt – to taste
- Oil – as needed
- Heat 1 tsp of oil in a small pan and saute coconut till brown.
- Add chilly powder, coriander powder, and turmeric powder and stir fry till it gives an aroma.
- Be sure to simmer it, thus preventing masalas from getting burned too much. Keep aside and cool. Grind it to a smooth fine paste.
- Soak tamarind in 1/2 cup of warm water and take the extract from it.
- Heat 2 tbsp of oil and add mustard seeds, curry leaves and whole red chillies and allow it to splutter.
- Add shallots, salt and fenugreek powder into it, and sauté for a while.
- Add tamarind extract into it and allow it to boil for 2-3 mts.
- If necessary add water. Now add the ground paste into it and simmer for further 4-5 minutes.
- Serve hot.