With all the different varieties of colocasia available in the markets, it's only fair that I share a recipe about what I cooked recently. It was smoked pork curry with the starchy tubers or corms. This vegetable is great with chicken as well. The small ones seen in the collage below are very good for khari, either on their own or teamed up with other veggies like papaya, ash gourd or pumpkin. I used them for a curry that did not have a great deal of spices.
Smoking the meat:
The meat was rubbed in a mix of salt and generous lashings of freshly ground garlic and ginger. It sat in the marinade overnight. The next day it was taken out of the fridge, brought to room temperature and placed on a wire mesh on top of a fire that had been burning for more than an hour before the meat was placed. It's so important that the fireplace is Hot! Left over wood from building our house, dead branches of mango, guava, and Indian blackberry all go into the fire. People say that adding bamboo along with the wood brings out that wonderful flavour in smoked meat! The flames should never be high as the meat then gets blackened on the surface and the inner portions do not get cooked properly. About two and a half hours or so on the wire mesh with some turnings in between and patience in controlling the fire yields good results. The wood can be removed towards the end of the smoking process and the meat can remain on the wire mesh as the embers still radiate a substantial amount of heat even after the fire is extinguished and till the drippings indicate that it's done.
|Colocasia and smoked pork|
500 grams colocasia
750 grams of smoked pork
2 tomatoes, cut lengthwise
2 large onions, coarsely grated
2 teaspoons of chilli powder
A quarter teaspoon of garlic/ginger paste (as the meat was marinaded in the paste I cut down the amount to be used in the curry)
A quarter teaspoon of turmeric powder
A teaspoon of coarsely grated black pepper
A tablespoon of coriander powder
3 tablespoons mustard oil
About two cups of hot water
Fresh ginger leaves for the garnish
~ Heat a pan of water. Let it come to boiling point then add the colocasia. Let the tubers cook for 5-6 minutes. Take one out and check to see if the skin can be removed easily.If so, then drain, cool and remove the skin from the tubers.
~Cut the meat into bite-size pieces.
~ Heat the mustard oil in a pan. When it comes to smoking point, add the onions. Fry for a few minutes and add the meat.
~ Add the other spices, the tomatoes, and continue to cook with the lid on till the oil separates. Keep stirring in between. This will take about 25 minutes. Then add the colocasia. They needn't be cooked for too long because of the previous boiling. Stir gently. Overcooked colocasia can turn mushy.
~Add about two cups of hot water. Cook for another five minutes or so.
~ Remove the pan from the flame. Tear off the ginger leaves into one-inch pieces and garnish the dish.
This is a rustic dish that is high on taste. The use of spices is minimal as other flavours should not overpower the distinct and wonderful taste/smell of freshly smoked pork.