Sunday, March 15, 2009

Unripe Papaya koottu

Hope even now every house in an Indian village will be blessed with a curry leaf ,papaya and drumstick tree in the backyard.
No one can deny the health aspects we derive from a kitchen garden and the amount of satisfaction we get from the home-grown vegetables. Personally I believe a lot that having some plants in our garden / indoor pots will boost our energy level and balance the ecosystem soon. So if you wish to leave a healthy world to our future generation, kindly introduce the gardening skills to the kids.
That is why our elders could have educated us to worship the main tree in the Hindu temples (sthala virutcham).Lovely way to appreciate the Mother Nature. Isn't it!

I remember the days when guests visit my dad's house surprisingly in odd hours.
(Those were the days when people considered comforting the guests as service to God.
But unfortunately, they won't be having enough vegetables in stock or any restaurants nearby like us. So they will try to find a quick fix meal to serve the guest within half an hour.)
Immediately my mom would serve them a tall glass of cool butter milk flavored with curry leaf and sea salt / hot tea according to the outside weather.
Then while our dad / grandpa talking with them and we (the kids...that time ..ha ha) digging into their gifts , mom would run to the backyard to reach out some drumsticks and an unripe papaya.
Then what? mom could have finished an entire array of piping hot rice with ghee, vatral kulambu or green gram sambar , papaya koottu with some appalam / egg.
What could be more pleasing than this simple home made meal for our surprise guest!!
Hope every one likes this koottu:)

Unripe Papaya koottu / Papali kaai koottu


Unripe papaya - 1 (350 gms)
Channa dhal (Bengal gram)- 1/2 cup
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
salt - to taste
To grind:
Shredded coconut - 2 tbsp
green chilly - 2
Cumin seed - 1/4 tsp
To temper:
oil - 1 tsp
Chopped onion - 1 tbsp
curry leaf - 1 brig
mustard seed - 1/2 tsp

1. Soak the channa dhal for 30 minutes.

2.Select a matured but unripe papaya.
Wash and clean the papaya.
Quarter it and remove the seeds along with its hairy fiber.
Remove the skin with a knife and wash the pieces again, so as to remove any milk like fluid from the outer layer.
Chop the papaya in to small cubes.

3.Pressure cook the channa dhal along with papaya, a cup of water and Turmeric powder to 3 whistles.
Put off flame and wait till the pressure gets released.

4.Grind coconut, green chilli and cumin seeds together.

5.Take a vessel with lid. Add the cooked papaya + dhal and ground mixture.
Bring them to a boil.Add salt to taste.

6. In the same time, heat oil in a wok.
Splutter the mustard seeds, then add the curry leaf and finely chopped onion.
Fry them till the onion turns red and crispy.
Add this tempering to the boiling papaya and put off flame.

Unripe papaya koottu is ready!

Serving suggestions:

Good to go as side dish with any roti or paratha or south Indian rice dishes.


1.Green papaya is believed to be harmful for pregnant women.
2.A small piece of green papaya added to the meat will make it tender and the meat will get cooked very fast. So it can be used as a meat tenderiser.


Varsha Vipins said...

Mom used to make this minus the dal..We used to grow this lot in garden..looks yum Viki..:)

Anonymous said...

We had lots of papaya at home...But those days i was not fond of them..Now i wish i could get way viki..yours looks yum yum

Gita Jaishankar said...

Nice memories Viki...nothing tastes as good a simple curry with dal and rice made by mom...papali kai curry looks delicious...where did you find unripe papaya, which store Viki? I can also get one there :)

Deepa Hari said...

Nice one Viki....looks mom would make it...her version is slightly different.

Premyscakes said...

For it is quite new, will try soon.

Priya Suresh said...

Kootu looks too delicious, i never tried kootu with unripe papaya...excellent dish VIki..

gtyuk said...

surprise guests at home, that makes me recall similar incidents too :)
kootu looks yummy; I can hardly get papayas here!

Shama Nagarajan said...

simple new curry to me..nice read

Kayal said...

Looks new to me...but i am sure this will be delicious...thanks for sharing...

Malar Gandhi said...

I am jut like Ann, we had lots of papaya tree, back home...but cared less for them. Feel like using them in food now...after going thro' varous health factors...simple food makes a good feast, right.

Chitra said...

this is new to me viki,looks delish:)

Finla said...

Yeah my mom used to make this a lot to as we had papaya plant at home, this looks yumm.

Poornima Nair said...

Used to have this a lot at my parents place...looks delicious.

Jaishree Iyer said...

viki you have taken my memories to my village.In my MIL's backyard drumstick, papaya tree and so many veggies will be there.Me & MIl always makes this papaya kootu.yours looks delicious:)

Lavanya said...

looks yumm viki..I knew the curry bit i haven't prepared yet,next time i will give a try!!

Manju said...

its my first time here and i love you blog!! this kootu is such a staple at our home! :) brings back memories :)

Nandinis food said...

I know that green papaya is good for health. Whenever I see it, I get *zoom* disappeared!

Preety said...

this is new recipe for me..but looks delicious

Vibaas said...

have never had raw papaya kootu. looks yum.

u made feel guilty about gardening. i suck at it :( i tried few times and gave up. In the house we bought, the previous have left some beautiful plants and i'm maitaining them. that's the best i could do :D

Unknown said...

As you said we have a papaya tree,curry leaf plant and a drumstick tree in our backyard.We too make this papaya kootu..Your kootu looks delicious :)

Food for thought said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Vikis Kitchen said...

Thank you friends for your lovely comments. As per many of your comments, I too did not realize the benefits of raw papaya in cooking , when I got in plenty in India:)
Some clarifications:
Gita:I bought this fresh raw papaya at Subzi mandi in Iselin of NJ.
The price was $1.49 / lb on 03/08/2009.
Jaishree: I am so glad that I kindled ur memories on our home town. I too love our Tirunelveli very much dear. The very thinking will make me homesick:(
Vibaas: If you want to establish a kitchen garden , you can use the potting soil available in stores first to enrich the local soil. You can grow mint leaf, cilantro, curry leaf (if u get seeds ), small green chilly , brinjal , okra , tomato in pots . You can protect them in winter by bringing them inside the house. I am sure you can get a nice kitchen garden and some flowering plants for pooja:)

Cham said...

Papaya koottu very new to me, i make salad! But indian version sounds excellent!