Ingredients (Serves 5)
1. Chembin thaalu / taro stem – 2 stems, peeled and cut into 3/4 inch pieces (Makes about 2.5 cups)
2. Coconut oil – 1.5 tbsp
3. Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
Dried red chilies – 2, broken
4. Shallots – Arounds 1/2 cup, sliced
5. Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Kashmiri chilly powder (good quality) – 1 tbsp
Coriander powder – 1.5 tsp
Hing / asafoetida – 1 – 2 pinches
6. Hot water – 1.5 cup
Jaggery – 1 pinch
7. Tamarind – Lime sized (soak it in1/2 cup hot water for 15 minutes and then squeeze well to get juice)
8. Salt – To taste
1. Peel and chop the taro root stem into 3/4 inch pieces. Add little salt and mix well. Set aside for 10 minutes.
2. Heat coconut oil in a kadai over medium heat. Splutter mustard seeds and fry dried red chilies and curry leaves. Add shallots, little salt and cook until shallots starts to change color. Bring down the heat to low. Add turmeric powder, chilly powder, coriander powder and hing. Cook for a minute or two until their raw smell leaves. Squeeze taro stem pieces well and add to the kadai. Mix well. Cook for 5 – 6 minutes. Add tamarind juice, around 3/4 cup hot water, a pinch of jaggery or sugar, 1/8 tsp salt and mix well. Taste-check for salt. Cook covered for 8 – 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thick. Add salt, to taste. Finally add a tsp of coconut oil, few curry leaves and switch off. Serve with plain rice.