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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Chenakkari (Elephant yam coated with a spice mix)

Mr. Chena(elephant yam) is a rough 'n tough guy. His hard brown exterior warns you that he will brook no nonsense. The skin that makes you itch is designed to keep you from discovering that he has a heart of goodness. If you persist and make him yield to the charm of your spices you will discover someone that's good enough to eat.....

What you need:
Elephant yam - a small one
Salt
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp

To make the spice mix:
Corriander seeds (dhania) - 2 tsp
Channa dal - 2 tsp
Red chilli - 2 (adjust according to taste)
Heat half a tsp of oil and roast all three ingredients until reddish brown. Let it cool and then powder. This powder keeps well for several days. You can make a large quantity and store it in an air tight container for later use.

To make chenakkari:
Remove the skin from the yam.....chop it into small pieces and wash well in several changes of water.
Add some water and pressure cook along with the salt and turmeric powder until two whistles. The yam should be well cooked but not mushy.
Drain excess water and keep aside.
Heat a tsp of oil in a kadai. Season with mustard seeds, urad dal and channa dal. When the mustard seeds pop, add in the cooked yam and spice mix. Stir well until all the yam pieces are coated with the spice mix.
Serve with rice or roti.

Note:
  • The spice mix can be used with other veggies like brinjal and bell pepper.
  • Cleaning the yam can make your skin itch. It's nothing to worry about, though......it will subside in a short while.

18 comments:

Shella said...

I love chena, especially what my mom makes i.e., vartha-arachu....this variation too looks yummm

Asha said...

I like the masala ingredients! I just cooked some Plantains, would be nice to add this masala. Suran dish looks delicious!:)

Laavanya said...

I love chenai... and this spice mix sounds wonderful. Lovely picture too.

Miri said...

I love yam too and have posted a dish which gives crispy slices of yam coated with a masala paste. This dish has a nice spice paste too - and the itching can be reduced if the yam is soaked in imli water for a bit.

Sia said...

another way to avoid itchiness of yam is to soak in in sour butter milk for half an hour or so. wonderful recipe jaya. thank u. i am bookmarking this.

Happy cook said...

I love chena. It is ages ago i had them as we don't get it here

sandhya said...

looks yummy... i dont get fresh ones here, i use frozen so no issue of itching...

Priya said...

i love chena kari so much. looks good. try adding some grated coconut when grinding the spices.

Uma said...

looks lovely. Great way to cook yams.

Mythreyee said...

My mom used to make this. She used to add garlic too. Looks fantastic.

Kalai said...

I love your intro! This recipe sounds like a wonderful spicy side to go with so many things. Nice one! :)

Jayashree said...

Shella, would love to see your mom's recipe.
Asha, Iam sure it would taste good with plantains too....
Laavanya, thx.
Miri, didn't know about the imli water bit.....will try that next time.

Jayashree said...

Sia, looks like the sourness helps with the itching....you've suggested buttermilk and miri has suggested tamarind...thx.
HC, parcel ayachu tharano???
Sandhya, frozen is good enough when the real thing is not there....
Priya, will try that out.

Jayashree said...

Uma, Mythreyee, Kalai...thank you for your encouraging words.

Seena said...

Jaya,I love that rough n tough guy!
Nice recipe.. :)

Dhivya said...

Looks awesome lavanya...lovely pis and recipe

Sagari said...

love the spicemix jayashree

lata raja said...

Thanks Jay that you sent me this link. I have been meaning to make podi kari and there is one with grinding thuvaram parippu in a cook book. I want to try that version too....but again have to wait to get to India for the chenai!