Kappa or Tapioca is a staple food in Kerala. It is served in different forms accompanied with Fish Curry, Beef or with Chilli Chutney. I have a few friends from Kerala at work and they always carry their lunch to work. Once in a way they share their lunch with me and I had the pleasure to taste this Kappa Meen Curry. I managed to get the recipe finally and tried it out at home.
For the Kappa (Tapioca side-dish) :
1 large Tapioca Washed, peeled and chopped into cubes
½ cup grated coconut
4 green chillies finely chopped
2 shallots (malbari onions) chopped
½ tsp turmeric
Salt to taste
1 tablespoon coconut oil
½ tsp mustard seeds
3-4 red chillies
1 spring curry leaves
Crush coconut, onions, green chillies and ¼ tsp turmeric and little salt in a pestle (or grind coarsely in a blender).
When the Tapioca is soft and all the water has evaporated, add the coconut mixture and cook for a further 2 minutes. In a pan heat coconut oil, add mustard seeds, dry chillies (torn) and curry leaves and then pour into the tapioca mixture and mix. Serve with fish curry.
Meen (fish) Curry :
7-8 sardines gutted and washed thoroughly (soak with salt & turmeric and then wash again-this removes the fishy smell)
6-7 pearl onions thinly sliced
3-4 green chillies slit
4 garlic cloves
2” piece ginger cut into thin slices
2-3 sprigs curry leaves
½ tsp fenugreek powder
2-3 small pieces of tamarind or kokum
2 tsp red chilly powder
¼ tsp turmeric power
2 tbsp coconut oil
Salt to taste
1 ¼ cup water
Heat oil in a pan, when medium hot throw in curry leaves, add onion, ginger, green chillies, garlic and sauté. Add turmeric powder and chilly powder and sauté. Then add powdered fenugreek and then add the tamarind/kokum water and bring to boil till gravy thickens. After it comes to a rolling boil add the fish, cook for 5-6 minutes. Before putting off the fire, take some oil in your palm and crush some curry leaves in the oil and add to curry.
എങ്ങനെയുണ്ട് കപ്പ-മീന് കറി
എങ്ങനെയുണ്ടായിരുന്നു കപ്പ-മീന് കറി
(That translated means…please do enjoy your Kappa and Meen Curry special).