‘A nostalgic cuisine from God’s own country’, ‘A nostalgic journey to our childhood days’. Google ‘pothichoru’ and those lines pop up. Umpteen videos demonstrate how to make the pothichoru.

What is it about the pothichoru that whets your appetite and makes your mouth water at the very mention of it? Perhaps, the magic lies in its simplicity – hot, steamed rice and curries, chutneys and pickles wrapped in slightly toasted banana leaves ( vattiya ila in local parlance).

That was how many people in Kerala used to pack a taste of home to take to schools, colleges and workplaces a long time ago. Remember that appetising aroma that wafts up when you open it during lunch time?

Somehow the same meals packed in sterile lunch boxes never taste the same. Perhaps that is why there are many takers for this homely meal packed in banana leaves.

Nostalgia is the other name for this food parcel. But now this common man’s all-in-one lunch packet is going places, having become an integral part of the menu of many upmarket hotels and restaurants.

The pothichoru served in restaurants packs a surprise as each is different. It is a guessing game for hungry customers. Usually, it is simple fare: rice, a vegetable dish (a thoran), a curry, an omelette or a fish fry and a pickle or chutney. A pappadam is a luxury. But the elaborate pothichoru that one gets at the restaurants leaves you spoilt for choices.

Text Courtesy ~ The Hindu.

This recipe is is Inspired from a TV Show called, “Taste of Kerala” aired by Amirtha TV and anchored by Mr. Raj Kalesh. The Chef on the show was Ravi Chettan.

Here i am going to present you the Ravi Chettan’s way of “Pothichoru”, Thanks a ton Ravi Chettan and Kaleshettan ???? for the nostalgic way back.

Update :-

Recently i saw Ravi Chettan again in the show De Ruchi aired by Mazavil Manorama TV and anchored by Mr. Raj Kalesh. As Mr. Kalesh mentioned in the show “Ravi Panikker a.k.a Ravichettan can be called as a brand ambasadder of Thani Nadan Kerala Recipes”

# Recipe serves two persons

Ingredients for Rice

  • Kerala Matta Rice 1 Cup
  • Water 6-8 Cups

Ingredients for Pavakka Mezhukkupuratti

  • Pavakka (Bitter Gourd) 1 Medium (Thin Sliced)
  • Small Onion (Shallots) 8 Nos.
  • Green Chilly 2 Nos.
  • Garlic 2 Pods
  • Chilly Powder 1 Pinch
  • Coconut Oil 2 Tablespoon
  • Salt as required

Ingredients for Mutta Thoran

  • Egg 3 Nos.
  • Small Onion (Shallots) 8 Pods. (Nicely chopped)
  • Black Pepper Powder 1 Teaspoon.
  • Turmeric Powder 1 Pinch
  • Grated Coconut 2 Tablespoon
  • Coconut Oil 2 Tablespoon
  • Salt as required

Ingredients for Fish Fry

  • King Fish Steak 2 Nos.
  • Chilly Powder 1 Teaspoon.
  • Black Pepper Powder 1/4 Teaspoon.
  • Turmeric Powder 1 Pinch
  • Crushed Ginger, Garlic and Curry Leaf 1 Tablespoon
  • Water 1 Teaspoon
  • Coconut Oil as required to fry
  • Salt as required

Ingredients for Dried Prawns Chammanthi

  • Dried Prawns (Cleaned, Roasted and Crushed) 4 Tablespoon.
  • Chilly Powder 1 Teaspoon.
  • Grated Coconut 5 Tablespoon.
  • Small Onion (Shallots) 2 Pod.
  • Curry Leaf 3 Nos.
  • Tamarind as required
  • Salt as required

Special Packing

Malayalis enjoy the aroma of burnt plantain leaves and so there are many dishes that come wrapped in slightly burnt/toasted banana leaves. That is something we used to do at our homes, especially for the Pothichoru. The taste is awesome.

  • Banana Leaf 2 Nos.
  • Mango Pickle (Optional)

How to cook Rice

  1. Rinse the rice 2-4 times
  2. Boil water in Rice Vessel, add rice in to the boiling water
  3. When the rice starts boiling, sim the fire and cook till done
  4. Drain the water in your preferred way and transfer in to the bowl.

# Cooking time of rice may differ, so confirm the rice is cooked before draining the water.

Directions for Pavakka Mezhukkupuratti

  1. Heat up your favorite pan/kadai with the coconut oil
  2. Add Pavakka and sauté for 3-4 minutes
  3. Add small onion, garlic and green chilly; Sauté 3-4 minutes
  4. Add salt and Chilly Powder and sauté well for 2 minutes.
  5. Done 😉

Directions for Mutta Thoran

  1. Heat up your favorite pan/kadai with the coconut oil.
  2. Add sliced small onion, turmeric powder, salt as required and sauté in low flame.
  3. Add eggs and scramble them, when the eggs are half cooked; add grated coconut.
  4. Saute till cook, and sprinkle pepper powder as required.
  5. Mix Well 😉

Directions for Fish Fry

  1. Grind together all the ingredients with the water
  2. Marinate the fish steaks with the ground paste and keep it for 10 minutes.
  3. Heat up your frying pan with required oil and deep fry in low medium flame

Directions for Dried Prawns Chammanthi

  1. Coarsely grind all the ingredients with out water in a mixer grinder or അമ്മികല്ല്
  2. Add the crushed Dried Prawns into it, and grind for 2 seconds.

Directions for Special Packing

  1. Burn the Banana Leaf on low flame, and keep it on a news paper
  2. Place the rice in the middle of the leaf, and place the Pavakka Mezhukkupuratti, Mutta Thoran, Dried Prawns Chammanthi and fish fry on side.
  3. Add Mango Pickle; wrap the leaf and the news paper thereafter.

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