Monday, June 6, 2011

Black-eyed Peas and Egg Plant Kootu (Stew)!

I haven't cooked anything new in a long time. I have been extremely busy with work and my wife has been doing all the cooking. I finally felt like cooking past Sunday, as I had some downtime. So, I made Black-eyed Peas and Eggplant Stew, which is one of my favorite dishes.Some might call this a "sambar", but I call it a Kootu (stew). The prep is very similar to that of sambar, but slightly different. For instance, I add lots of sesame oil to this dish.

This measurements used in this recipe will make a batch that will feed one (hungry) person approximately 6-8 servings.

Toor daal (Lentils) 2-3 cups
Black-eyed peas 2 cups
Asian Eggplant - 6 quartered
Tamarind paste - 1 Tsp
Tomatoes - about 5-6 diced/sliced
Onions - 2 Large - chopped
Coriander seeds - 1 Tbsp
Cumin seeds - 1 Tsp
Red Chilies - 6-8
Fenugreek Seeds - 1 Tsp
Shredded Coconut - 1 cup
Turmeric powder - 1 Tsp
Sesame seed oil - 1/4 cup
Garnish: chopped curry leaves and cilantro


  1. Cook the lentils until soft in a pressure-cooker or in a conventional sauce pan.
  2. Soak the black-eyed peas overnight and cook them in a pressure cooker or in a conventional sauce pan.
  3. In a sauce pan, roast the coriander seeds, cumin, red chilies. You may use a drop or two of oil if you like to roast these. I dry toast them.
  4. Grind the the ingredients from step 2 and the grated coconut in a blender. Use little water (the mix should be moist/wet but not runny).
  5. In a large pan, heat-up 2 cups of water. Once the water starts to boil, add the cooked daal, the black-eyed peas, egg plant, and the spicy paste from step 3, to the water. Turn down the heat a notch or two. Add the tamarind paste, turmeric and a pinch of asafoetida. Stir the mix so the lentils don't stick to the bottom of the vessel. Cook the mixture for roughly 5-7 minutes on medium heat.
  6. Add the tomatoes and the onions and cook for another 3 minutes. It is nice not to turn the onions mushy.
  7. Add salt to taste and garnish with cilantro and the chopped curry leaves.
The finished product!
Black Kitty ate too much of the good cookin', he got all tired and went to sleep :)
Bon appetit' :)

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