Healthy Vegetarian and Vegan Stew that is simply out of this world!
Makes about 8 quarts
Or, according to my children, serves an army 🙂
Talk about eating healthy! Traditionally the day after Ganesh Chaturthi is Rushi/Rishi Pancahmi – a day to remember the great Indian sages (Rishis) and eat like the Rishis did in the forest! So after a day of feasting, the next day is supposed to be spent eating tons and tons of greens ,root and other vegetables cooked together in this absolutely delicious and very filling stew, called kandamool ! The word Kandamool literally means root vegetables.
Here in America too, just as fall is around the corner, there is an abundant supply of all the summer squashes ,greens, tubers and of course corn is at its peak of deliciousness! So I love making this stew that I have enjoyed since my childhood in India. Sometimes there are as many as 25 different vegetables, so it all adds up into this huge ‘lobster pot’ type container full of kandamool ! These days I add only the veggies we like a lot rather than stick to all the ‘traditional’ vegetables. I add greens like spinach, kale and Swiss chard that is easily available rather than the traditional tender ‘alu’ (colocasia leaves) that are hard to find here. Plus, we like a lot of the vegetables available in international stores like the Spanish taro roots, the purple sweet potatoes and lotus roots available in Korean markets and the edamame. So my version is remembering the global rishis and following their diet for the day 🙂
Speaking of diets, I had started the summer with good intentions of losing the extra pounds but have instead ‘found’ some more pounds:) So this Kandamool is a good transition for me to start eating right in the fall. I ended up with a 8 quart pot full of kandamool and am enjoying the leftovers for lunches.
You can use vegetables and their amounts according to your choice. All the veggies cooked together lend their flavor to the unified and delicious taste of Kandamool. It is a balance of the sweet and sour tastes. So the veggies I always include are- the red pumpkin, sweet potatoes or yams and the tomatoes. Once I have all the veggies prepped and the coconut mixture ground, I am ready to go!
Ingredients including vegetables, greens and root vegetables I used-
- Greens- I bunch kale chopped, 2 boxed packages frozen chopped spinach,defrosted and 1 bunch colored swiss chard, chopped
- 1 (16 ounce) pkg. frozen butternut squash (defrosted)
- 1 cup cooked dal( I used toor dal but you may use the quick cooking masoor dal too)
- Root vegetables-Peel and cut -6 small arvi (colacassia/malanga ), sweet potatoes- 3 red and 2 purple ,1 medium lotus root, 1 taro. I put them in a bowl of water to clean them again. Drain.
- 1/2 cup raw peanuts ,soaked in water for few minutes.
- water to cook the vegetables
- 3 corn on the cob shucked and cut into 6 pieces, a handful of frozen edamame, defrosted, I medium sized ridged gourd cut into 1/2 inch circles.
- 1/4 of a medium red pumpkin,chopped
- 2 big plum tomatoes,chopped
- sea salt to taste
Grind together into a paste-
¾ cup frozen shredded coconut, defrosted
4 to 5 small green Thai bird chilies
1 lemon sized ball of jiggery
about 1 ½ tablespoons of dried tamarind, soaked in warm water and pulp extracted
Plain low fat yogurt or dairy free yogurt
To make the kandamool-
- In a huge pot,start boiling the greens and the butternut squash with some water. Add the cooked dal and some salt.
- This is the broth. base. Add the tubers and vegetables according to their cooking time. So the tubers that take longer to cook go in first- the arvi, sweet potatoes, lotus root, taro and peanuts. Add some water and let cook for 3 to 4 minutes.
- Add the corn on the cob and the edamame. Add just enough water for the vegetables to cook.Add some sea salt as you layer the vegetables.
- After another 4 minutes or so, add the cut ridged gourd, pumpkin, tomatoes and some sea salt.
- Cover and let the mixture cook for another 5 to 7 minutes on low heat.
- Add the ground paste, and let the mixture come to a boil.
- Reduce heat to low and let the kandamool simmer for another 2 minutes to assimilate all the delicious flavors of the vegetables.
- Kandamool is served with a huge dollop of fresh plain yogurt. Enjoy!
Notes- Timing is key in making kandamool basically to make sure that all vegetables cook evenly. Sometimes people find it easier to cook the vegetables and roots separately and then combine them in one pot with the ground coconut mixture and let it simmer together for 2 minutes or so to marry the flavors.