Thursday, November 15, 2012

Kooka Upkari

With Input from: Chandrika Kini

Kooka(Chinese Potatoes/Koorkka/Sambrani) is a smaller version of potato that grows mostly in Northern Kerala and parts of Coastal Karnataka. Karkala is famous for Kooka and we get the best Kooka from Karkala in the Autumn months till late February. It takes some time for a novice to get used to the muddy smell of Kooka!

GSB Konkanis adapted taste wherever they settled, and made curries with their own innovation using the local veggies. Kooka is used with variety of whole beans in coconut gravy based curries and also as it is, in a spicy tangy chilly tamarind based curry called Saung.

Kooka Upkari is a delicacy for GSB Konkanis and we make it two ways. One way is to peel, wash and cut the Kooka into thick pieces, par boil it in salt water and season it with Mustard seeds and red chillies/green chillies/curry leaves in oil and garnish it with grated coconut or without that. Better way to relish Kooka is to clean and cut it into match stick thin pieces and season it with red chillies and mustard seeds in oil and roast it till well cooked.

Here is the way we make it at home. Kooka Upkari at its best!

Kooka - 500Gms
Mustard Seeds - 1 Tsp
Red Chillies - 6-8 broken
Coconut Oil - 1 Tbsp
Salt - To Taste

Fill Kooka in a small gunny bag or any rough cotton bag and beat the bag against hard surface till the skin peels out. 

Wash thoroughly in water and remove any remaining skin/root from the Kooka. 
Slice thin and cut into match stick size bits and put them in a bowl of cold water as you cut them. Wash well, drain and keep aside.
Heat oil in a thick bottomed kadai/wok. 

Add mustard seeds and allow them to splutter. 
Add broken red chillies and then the cut Kooka bits. 
Add salt to taste, mix well and close the lid. 
Simmer the flame. 
If necessary, add little water. 
Once Kooka is well cooked and soft, raise the flame and fry well till the bits get golden on the outside and the upkari is dry.
Serve hot with Steamed rice and Daalithove.

No comments:


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Image Copy Control