You know how it is when since morning nothing goes right? Woke up with a headache when there was so much to do. Business appointment got cancelled for the 3rd time in as many days.I hadn’t done my weekly veggie shopping and it was too late to order online in time to prepare lunch. New driver didn’t turn up for work so I couldn’t go to the store. However Bangalore weather decided to be merciful after the oppressive humidity of the last few days, and there was a pleasant breeze blowing in from my kitchen balcony. The Chinese chimes were ringing like mad. So I decided to get rid of my ill humour and make one of my favourite meals – Capsicum Morekuzhambu.
Morekuzhambu is the South Indian avatar of Kadhi, using coconut paste in buttermilk or yoghurt instead of besan. Or maybe Kadhi is the North Indian avatar of Morekuzhambu! There are many versions of this dish, some of which do not use coconut. Easy and takes just 15 minutes to make, it tastes great with a fried potato, brinjals or ladiesfinger (okra) curry. I like it best with deep fried bitter gourd (karela/ pahakkai) rounds. I make a capsicum morekuzhambu but sometimes substitute ladies finger for the capsicum.
Kitchen hints for making Capsicum Morekuzhambu:
- Grind the coconut into a fine paste rather than a coarse one.
- Keep the pan on low flame throughout the cooking process. Higher levels of heat will make the curd breakup into curds and whey, which though it was what Little Miss Muffet of nursery rhyme fame liked, is not how a morekuzhambu should appear!
- Use a whisk to keep whisking when the sauce is being cooked, for better consistency.
The slightly bitter taste of the karela offsets the mild spiced flavours of the capsicum morekuzhambu. I had mine with hot rice and a little ghee, and my day didn’t seem so bad after all!