Vegetable Saagu

(Medly of Mixed Vegetables in Spiced Coconut Gravy, a Kannadiga signature dish)     

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Prep Time: 15 mins
Cooking Time: 30 mins
Serves: 4-5

1 large Potato, chopped into ½ inch cubes
2 medium Carrots, cubed
Few Cauliflower Florets
½ cup Avarekaalu/Tuvar Lilva
¼ cup Green Peas, fresh/frozen
Few French Beans
Few Flat Beans
(Basically, take about 5-6 cups of mixed vegetables of your choice)
½ tsp Turmeric Powder
1 tbsp Jaggary/Brown Sugar (Adjust acc to taste)
1 tbsp Coriander Leaves, finely chopped
1 large Onion, thinly sliced
1 tsp Mustard Seeds
Big pinch of Hing/Asafoetida
1 tbsp Oil
Few Curry Leaves

For Ground Masala:
1-1½ inch Cinnamon Stick
3-4 Cloves
3-4 Cardamom pods
4-6 Dry Red Chillies (adjust acc to taste)
1 tsp Jeera/Cumin Seeds
1-2 Green Chillies (Optional)
¾ - 1 cup Coconut, fresh/frozen
1 tbsp Raw Rice, soaked in water for 15 mins
2 tbsp Coriander Leaves, including stems

Cook vegetables with turmeric powder and salt to taste in a pan or pressure cook till they are fork tender.
While the vegetables are cooking, dry roast all the spices (cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, coriander seeds, jeera, dry red chillies) for 1-2 minutes on a medium to low heat till nice aroma appears.
Grind these spices with coconut, soaked rice, coriander leaves, and green chillies, if using any, to a smooth paste adding very little water.
Mix this ground paste with cooked vegetables. Add jaggary and adjust the seasoning and let it cook on a medium flame for 15-20 minutes for all the flavours to blend well.
While the Saagu is cooking, heat oil in a pan and add mustard seeds. When the mustard starts to pop and splutter, add curry leaves and hing. Sauté it for few seconds and add thinly sliced onion. Saute it on a medium flame for about 5-10 minutes till it turns golden brown.
Remove Saagu from fire and mix browned onions and coriander leaves. Cover and let it sit for 10-15 minutes for the flavours to blend well. Serve hot Saagu with Poori, Chapatti, Dosa, Idli or with steaming Rice and enjoy. It tastes better the next day.

Labels: Coconut, Coriander, Karnataka food, Lilva, Mixed Vegs