Erissery: Mashed pumpkin and Red Cowpeas cooked together in a mildly spiced, coconut based curry.
Onam is almost upon us and I can’t help but recall all those delicious Sadhya meals I have had at some amazing friends’ homes on the festive day. I vividly remember how they woke up in the wee hours of the morning, and prepared themselves for the day including preparing and setting the sadhya on a leaf platter in a set pattern for all who visited their homes. So welcoming and fresh would be the meal.
I have never had the opportunity so far to celebrate Onam in Kerala, the home state of this traditional festival. Living away from hometown, our holidays did not coincide with the 10days festivities that precede until Onam. However, we would be invited to our Malayali Hindu friends’ homes (or we would all go together to the Malayali club) and live up to it and like wise they would come over at Christmas to ours. So this way we did not give our festivals a miss even while staying away from our hometowns.
Years passed by and this year Onam is only 5days away. Usually we book a place at one of the Kerala themed restaurants and have the Sadhya. But sometimes, the Malayali in me likes to make the meal at home including the most awaited payasams. One of the dishes include Erissery, a medley of pumpkin and red cowpeas in a thickened coconutty gravy.
Erissery: Mashed pumpkin and Red Beans cooked together in a mildly spiced, coconut based curry. Onam is almost upon us and I can't help but recall all those delicious Sadhya meals I have had at some amazing friends' homes on the festive day. I vividly remember how they woke up in the wee hours of t
- Soak about 3/4cup of red beans for about an hour. Pressure cook the red cowpeas with a little salt and garlic and water until done.
- In a claypot or vessel, cook the pumpkin with a fat pinch of turmeric, some salt, green chilly and some water.
- In the meantime, grind together tightly packed half cup of grated coconut, 3-4dry red chillies, 1/4tsp cumin seeds and couple of peppercorns with very little water to a paste. Set aside.
- Toast about 2tbsp of grated coconut in a tsp of coconut oil until browned slightly. Set aside
- Once the red cowpeas is cooked, add to the pumpkin. Mix thoroughly. Add the ground coconut mixture. Check for salt and simmer until slightly thickened and not a watery gravy. Add the toasted coconut and stir. Remove from heat.
- Heat about 1tbsp of coconut oil and crackle mustard seeds, quicly add the dry chillies and curry leaves. Stir and pour over the curry. Drizzle with a little more coconut oil if you like.
- Serve warm with Rice.