My earliest memory of eating this dish was during Ganesh Chaturthi which is celebrated in a very grand manner at our house. The number of dishes that my Mom makes during this festival has to be seen to be believed! With a little assistance from Google, I found that the scientific name for Soornu is Amorphophallus paeoniifolius or simply put, the Elephant Foot Yam. It is also called Sooran in Hindi and Suvarna Gedde in Kannada. I have always liked this dish and for this Ganesh Chaturthi which was celebrated a few days ago , I decided to give this curry a shot and luckily for me, it came out pretty well!
- Soornu/Yam/Sooran - 1 packet (340 gms/12 oz), frozen.
- Oil - 1 tsp
- Coriander seeds - 2 tsp
- Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
- Fenugreek(Methi) seeds - 10-12
- Dry red chillies - 12 (I used Byadgi chillies)
- Grated coconut - 2 tbsp
- Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
- Tamarind paste - 1 tsp
- Coconut oil - 1 tbsp
- Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
- Dry red chillies - 2, broken into two
- Curry leaves - 1 sprig
Chop the Soorna pieces into small cubes. Adding little water in a saucepan, bring the chopped pieces to a boil. I use either the frozen or the canned Soornu which tends to get cooked pretty quickly.
In a pan, heat oil and put in the coriander seeds, mustard seeds, methi seeds and red chillies and fry till fragrant. Then put in the grated coconut and turmeric powder and fry on low flame till the coconut turns golden brown. Set aside to cool. When cool, put the roasted ingredients in a blender, add the tamarind paste and blend to a smooth paste. Water can be added to help with the blending. When done, pour this masala into the saucepan with the cooked soorna pieces, add little water and salt to taste and bring it to a boil.
Heat coconut oil in a pan. Put in the mustard seeds. When the seeds splutter, add the red chillies and curry leaves. After a few seconds, pour this into the curry.
Serve hot with white rice and Daalithoi (Konkani Daal).
- If using fresh Soornu, see to it that your hands and the Soornu are absolutely dry. Water SHOULD NOT be used at all when cutting up the vegetable. If it does come in contact with water and you touch it, your hands can get very itchy. To get rid of the itchiness, soak tamarind in hot water and soak your hand in it for 10 -15 minutes. Best way to go about this is to use gloves when handling the Soornu.
- This dish is not a very watery dish, the consistency should be slightly on the thicker side.