Sunday, January 2, 2011

In Yellow and Green


Broccoli is a versatile vegetable but it tastes best with a minimum amount of cooking, like in stir-fries. So why not a ‘mallung/mallum’, usually a shredded-leaf dish that's cooked for a few minutes. So here’s a mallum adapted from Chandra Dissanayake’s Ceylon Cookery’ book for ‘Mukunuwenna Mallum’.
Used broccoli as I didn’t have mukunuwenna – a popular green weed that is still sold door-to-door by ‘greens’ hawkers, in Colombo. I like this dish because it doesn’t use oil. And I make it in bulk to freeze for weekday dinners.

What you’ll need:
1 to 1½ kg broccoli
2 sprigs curry leaves
4-6 green chillies, chopped (or 1-2 teaspoons crushed chillies)
1 cup desiccated coconut, rehydrated with half a cup of water
1 red onion
1 teaspoon turmeric
2-3 teaspoons salt

What to do:
In a food-processor, finely chop broccoli and onion together. Then into a saucepan, add broccoli-onion mixture, curry leaves, re-hydrated desiccated coconut, chillies, turmeric and salt. Dry fry (no oil) for a few minutes until the broccoli is done.   


I once served this cabbage mallum with string hoppers but it tastes just as good with rice. Best of all it’s on and off the stove in minutes. Again this is a favourite from the ‘Ceylon Cookery’ book by Chandra Dissanayake.

What you’ll need:
* 250g cabbage
* ¼ teaspoon turmeric
* ½ cup desiccated coconut
* 1 sprig curry leaves
* 1 small onion
* 2 dried red chillies, broken into bits
* 1 teaspoon mustard powder
* ½ teaspoon pepper
* 1 teaspoon salt
* ¼ cup of water or less (I don’t use any)

What to do: 
Shred cabbage and onion together in a food processor. Empty cabbage mixture into a saucepan. Add curry leaves, salt and water, if using. Cook for a few minutes. Then add coconut and spices. Stir for a few minutes more and take off fire. I generally add all the ingredients in one go and take off the fire after a few minutes.

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