The first time I had a Sadhya meal was at my wedding. And while it was a delicious feast, there was one thing that stood out from the rest. It was distinct from any other dish on the leaf. My uninitiated Punjabi family asked my in-laws about it, curious to find out about the sweet and comforting yet very familiar thing they had just eaten.
It was a Pineapple pachadi. Pachadi that sounded like khichadi to my ears, that were still picking up Malayalam words. But the alliteration helped me remember the name. Pineapple Pachadi! Pineapple Pachadi, I tried to learn the name and to made a mental note to try out the recipe.
Now almost four years later, I am a bit more familiar with recipes from Kerala and this one felt like a breeze.
Pachadi is an accompaniment in the Onam/Vishu Sadhya meal and can be made using different vegetables like beetroot, cucumbers, pineapple and even some gourds.
Yes, there is obviously some coconut there and yogurt makes an appearance too. Remember the ripe mango curry? This is similar.
But Pineapple with coconut and ginger is recipe for a tropical delight! Try it out!
Here’s how you can make yummy Pineapple Pachadi for your sadhya meals
1 cup ripe pineapple (cut into cubes)
1 cup grated coconut
1/2 inch piece of ginger
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 green chilli
1 cup water
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
salt to taste
1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
1-2 teaspoon sugar or a piece of jaggery (optional, if the fruit is not too ripe)
1/2 cup (or 1/4th cup) yogurt
For the tadka
2 teaspoons Sesame/ Coconut Oil
1/2 teaspoons mustard seeds
a pinch of fenugreek seeds
a sprig of curry leaves
1-2 dried red chillies
Peel the pineapple and cut it into small pieces. I was making a small batch so I just used a peeled and pre-cut pineapple.
In a small pan, place the pineapple pieces with a cup of water, salt, red chilli powder and turmeric. Add the sugar or jaggery (if using) at this stage of the fruit is not too ripe or sweet. Bring this to a boil and let it simmer till the pineapple pieces are softer.
In a food processor/blender/mixie jar, place the grated coconut, green chilli, cumin seeds and ginger and process till a smooth paste is formed. You may need to add a bit of water to process this better.
Add this coconut paste to the cooked pineapple and stir. Let this mixture simmer till the coconut is cooked. This should take 5-7 minutes on low heat. Once this is done, take this mixture off the heat and then add beaten yogurt to this. I used 1/2 cup of yogurt as I wanted it to be a little runny like a curry. You can add 1/4 cup of yogurt of you don’t want a more runny pachadi. You can check the salt at this stage and add more if needed.
In a small fry pan, heat coconut or sesame oil. Once it is hot, add the mustard seeds and let them splutter. Once they splutter, add the red chillies, curry leaves, fenugreek seeds and cook for a 10-15 seconds.
Pour this tadka on top of the pachadi and mix.
Serve with steamed rice, parippu dal and other sadhya items!
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