How to make rakkiri - A Kongu Nadu recipe
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- Greens (Amaranthus)- (keerai in Tamil) of any kind: 1 bunch (about 300-400 g of fresh leaves). You can use any other kinds of greens, including spinach and haaq (Kashmiri saag)
- Green chillies / jalapenos (Green pepper): 4-6 nos (whole).
- Onions - 1 (chopped)
- Coconut oil / ghee - 2 tbsp.
- Cumin - 1 tsp
- Salt to taste.
- Clean the greens, wash thoroughly in water and drain free of water. This is the most time-consuming step, takes about 10-20 mins.
- Take 5 cups (1 litre) of water in a large vessel. Add the green chillies whole in the water and bring to boil.
- Add the cleaned green leaves to the boiling water, so that the leaves are fully immersed in the boiling water. Cover the vessel and allow for 2 minutes. Turn the leaves over and allow for another 2 minutes. Drain the excess water. This cooking time I've given is actually more than what is required; perhaps 2 mins would do. Experiment to find what is ideal for you.
- Saute the cumin and onion in coconut oil.
- Blend the boiled greens, chillies and the sauteed onion for about 30 secs to 1 minute in a blender. Add salt to taste. For getting the texture of the traditional dish, use a maththu (hand blender) for blending.
Keerai is low in calories, low in fat and rich in minerals and vitamins. The low cooking time of this recipe helps retain most of the heat-labile vitamins.
Coconut oil is used to saute onions in areas bordering Kerala. Ghee or any other cooking oil may also be used.
You could replace green chillies with any other ingredient which gives spiciness to suit your palate. I personally prefer green chillies.
Rakkiri is a good accompaniment with rice. It is mixed with rice and eaten. It also is a good accompaniment to kazhi, a ragi flour based preparation.
PS: I'd really like you to try it out at home and send in your feedback. Why not try it out as a sauce in sandwiches?