Food | Recipes

Recipes from Kerala

Chef Ajay Kumar from the south Indian restaurant at Rydges Plaza, Dubai prepares popular Kerala recipes, Ulli Theeyal or Button Onions Curry, Meen Manga Curry or Fish and Mango Curry and Appams or Leavened Bread.

  • Irish Belleza, Videographer, Manjari Sexana, Reporter, Jaye Lentin and Sunita Menon, Production
  • Published: 19:41 July 30, 2010

Kerala's cuisine
  • Image Credit: Oliver Clarke, Gulf News
  • Kerala's cuisine is best enjoyed the traditional way - on banana leaves
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Chef Ajay Kumar of Coconut Grove, the South Indian restaurant at Rydges Plaza, Dubai, shares some popular recipes from Kerala.


Ulli theeyal (button onions curry)
II 100g button onions
II 1/2 coconut, grated
II 25g tamarind paste
II 2g ginger, chopped
II 25ml coconut oil
II 5-6 curry leaves
II 1 tsp mustard seeds
II 1 tbs coriander powder
II 1 tsp chilli powder
II 3-4 pieces of red chillies, whole
II A pinch of turmeric powder
II Salt to taste

Peel and wash onions. Roast grated coconut and grind into a paste. Heat coconut oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds, curry leaves, red chillies and chopped ginger. Add spices and coconut paste. Add onions to boiling curry and cook until tender. Add tamarind paste. Serve hot.

Meen manga curry (fish-and-mango curry)
II 100g fish (any)
II 2 raw mangoes
II 1/2 coconut, grated
II 20g button onions
II 2g ginger
II 4 green chillies
II 5-6 curry leaves
II 1/2 cup coconut milk
II 25ml coconut oil
II 1 tbs mustard seeds
II 1 tsp fenugreek seeds
II 1 tsp coriander powder
II 1 tbs red chilli powder
II 3-4 red chillies, whole
II A pinch of turmeric powder
II Salt to taste

Clean and cut the fish into medium-sized pieces. Chop mangoes, onions, ginger and green chillies. Heat coconut oil in a pan and add mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, curry leaves and red chillies. Add mangoes and grated coconut. Add a little water and cook until mangoes are soft. Add fish and cook with lid on until tender. Top with coconut oil. Serve with appams and rice.
Servings: 2

Appams (leavened bread)
II 200g rice, uncooked
II 1/2 coconut
II 1 tbs sugar
II Salt to taste
Soak rice for half a day. Grind with coconut into a fine paste. Add salt and sugar. Set aside for fermentation.
Heat a non-stick wok and pour a ladle of the fermented mixture. Rotate the wok to coat sides, leaving most of the mixture in the centre. Appam is cooked if it leaves the sides. Serve with curry.

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