Monday, April 7, 2008

Yam side dish/Suran/Chenna upperi/thoran

Just like my mother, my mother in law is a fantastic cook. Over the years I have learned a lot of great recipes from her. And like me, she is a keen cook and is always trying out new recipes.

I grew up in Mumbai and most of my friends were north Indians. I loved eating north Indian food, be it the yummy street food, Mougali or Punjabi dishes. Other then popular south Indian dishes such as idlis, dosas and appams, I rarely ate south Indian food at restaurants and I didn't really care for rice (especially the naadan(Rose Matta rice/Kuthari) par-boiled rice) or the south Indian side dishes that were made at home. It was too coconuty for me. But after I got married to a guy who loves south Indian food, I started trying out the various south Indian side dishes. I now love the sweet crunchy taste of coconut and the sheer simplicity of these recipes.

I have never seen a better recipe for yam/suran/chenna than the one here. This dish, which my mom in law makes, is so lip smacking good that you wouldn’t want to make yam any other way. The dish gets its sweet taste and crunchiness from the grated coconut and the chopped coconut, its kick from the dry red chilies and its tartness from the touch of lemon. Add a chicken cube and this dish is transformed
. The chicken cube changes the dish to a whole new dimension(vegetarians can use vegetable cubes).

*I have used frozen yam, as the Indian grocery store that I go to doesn't have fresh yam. Ideally it is best to make it with fresh yam, but frozen also works. If using fresh yam, you will have to cook it first till just tender. If you are using frozen ones then you can heat the yam in the microwave for a minute or so depending on your microwave.

  • 1 ½ cup Chenna/Suran chopped & cooked*
  • 1-cup coconut grated
  • 1 chicken/vegetable cube bullion
  • 1-cup onions chopped
  • ½ tsp Chili powder
  • ½ tsp Turmeric powder
  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • ½ tsp Mustard seeds
  • 2-3 red chilies
  • ½ tsp Urad dal
  • 3 green chilies
  • 1” ginger
  • ½ tsp coriander powder
  • ½ tsp jeera powder
  • ¼ cup coconut chopped
  • 1 – 2 tsp of lemon juice
  • Curry leaves a sprig

In a pot, put the oil and add mustard seeds, when they pop add the dry chilies, urad dal & curry leaves (Keep all this ready, otherwise you will burn either the urad dal or the chilies).

Add the chopped onions, green chilies and ginger. Sauté till the onions or translucent.

Add the grated coconut, turmeric, chili, coriander and jeera powder and sauté for a bit.

Add the chenna/suran/yam, sauté and mix well.

Then add the chopped coconut, chicken/veg. cubes (powder the cubes with your hands).

Add lemon juice. Adjust the seasoning.

Serve hot with rice or chappati and dal


Happy cook said...

I love chenna made like this.

Sagari said...

never tried yam ,but your recipe looks very yummy

Anonymous said...

Its Leena- checked out your website finally- It looks so inspiring- you've brought out the joy of cooking in moms like me where its become more of a mundane chore to do it often. The recipes look good- I am definitely going to try out some of them. thanks for taking the trouble to make it so inviting.