Vishu Kanji & Chakka Puzhukku ~rice & coconut porridge with jackfruit curry~
Happy Vishu to all my readers! Vishu this year was a complete success for me, everything went right! My daughter, who’s growing up so fast, not only comprehended what the early morning fuss was about but also appeared to thoroughly enjoy it. The previous evening we made the mandatory trip to the local supermarket and picked up most of the stuff that’s needed to celebrate Vishu in the most authentic way possible. We got Konna Poo, neat bunches, packaged in clear pastic bags with the price tag in place, we got a packet of pre cut sambhar vegetables, also a neat roll of banana leaves, to eat on – that was really our best buy. Perfect leaves, not a tear, no black spots, I have quite a few left over – so tommorow morning I am looking forward to making Elai Ada! Yum!
For any of my readers who are familiar with malayalam do drop by this post Vishu Ashamsagal, very nice write up on vishu celebration 50 years back in a hamlet in Kerala. My own celebration couldn’t be farther from that, no large family, no essentials like nellu, unnakkalari, uruli and so on, no river to run to and take a dip or enjoy the early morning fireworks which are much enjoyed part of vishu day celebrations.
We woke up at 4 am saw a beautiful Kani that I had set up the previous night, did the traditional game of checking the year’s fortunes, some roll a coconut – we tossed a shiny new rupee coin – heads means a great year; tails means the year has its lows, but you get two more chances – its the best of three! My daughter loved this the best
To carry the traditional mood forward, I made Vishu Kanji and Chakka puzhukku for breakfast. I believe ordinary boiled rice is used to make this thick porridge, I didn’t have any so I made some with basmati rice. We had earlier picked up a quarter of a mature (but not ripe) jackfruit. And I spent 40 minutes just to cut, clean and chop it! The women in my family will be horrified, but the time it takes to clean it up is precisely the reason I pass up opportunities to cook with this fruit. All it takes is a practiced hand. If you feel inspired to try this yourself, remember to liberally rub your hands and the knife with some coconut oil (or any oil), unripe jacks release a very sticky gum, as you can see in the pic. below. Now for the recipe,
For the Vishu Kanji (serves 3)
For the Chakka Puzhukku (serves 3 – 4)
The lunch was also traditional, I couldn’t manage to make all the sadya dishes, but there was sambhar, avial, manga kaalan, thoran & puli inji (a traditional ginger tamarind sweet & sour chutney). I will be posting the puli inji recipe next.