Saturday, 10 August 2013

Sothi (Coconut Curry)

Sothi is a quick curry to make and does not contain curry powders except turmeric, making it one of the mildest South Indian curries. Some versions of Thai green curry share some similarities with this dish, but sothi is closer to a lean soup to curry in consistency. This is one of my favourite ways to prepare the bottle gourd (also called calabash). However, tapioca shoots, spinach or thick slices of cabbage would work just as well in its place.

1 teaspoon spice mix (thalippu)
1 teaspoon fenugreek (additional to the ones in the spice mix)
1/2 onion, slice
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2-3 cm ginger, sliced
2-3 green or red chillies, optional
2 stalks curry leaves
2 small tomatoes, cut into wedges
1 bottle gourd, skinned, cut into rings and into smaller segments
150 g prawns (obviously, skip this ingredient to keep it vegetarian)
1 level teaspoon turmeric powder
200 ml coconut milk

Saute the onions, curry leaves, garlic, ginger and chillies in a tablespoon of oil for 2-3 minutes. Add the bottle gourd segments and a splash of water. Put the lid on and cook for about 10-12 minutes, adding water if necessary. Once the gourd is cooked, stir in the turmeric and prawns. Season with salt, drop the tomatoes into the curry, pour the coconut milk in and bring to a simmer. Take it off the heat once the prawns are pink and curled up, indicating they are done. Enjoy with white rice.

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