Brussels Sprouts Poryial (South Indian Brussels Sprouts with Coconut)

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Brussels Sprouts Poryial

When it comes to Indian side dishes, I don't often think of Brussels sprouts as they are not native to India and I don't think prominently used there. Yet it is such a versatile vegetable that, when cooked properly, is a pleasant addition to any meal and even simple seasoning such as a bit of butter, salt and pepper and perhaps a splash or two of lemon juice is usually really a fine side with a variety of meals.

Brussels sprouts can be steamed, boiled, roasted, sautéed, baked or grilled. They key to perfectly cooked Brussels is to remove the rough outer leaves and trim the stem. To avoid mushy, smelly sprouts, take care to cook just until fork tender or crispy on the outer edges depending on the cooking method you use. You'll want to retain their bright green color and they should have a satisfying sweet nutty flavor. I always liken them to mini cabbages, and in fact Brussels are cruciferous vegetables and part of the same family that includes cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, radishes, turnip, kale and other greens. A very nutritional vegetable, Brussels sprouts are high in fiber, anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals. An especially high source of vitamin K, they are also a good source of vitamin C and one of the best plant sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Good for you and a pleasure to eat.

Sauteed Brussels Sprouts with Coconut

But much as I enjoy Brussels sprouts with just basic seasoning and little fuss, I also like to dress up my Brussels. So I came up with an easy side dish inspired by South Indian cuisine. Essentially a poriyal — a dry vegetable curry popular in South India — this dish features not only aromatic seeds and spices but also tomato and dried coconut. The natural sweetness of the Brussels sprouts is balanced by the warming spices, tangy tomato, and a bit of sourness from the addition of lemon juice. I served them up alongside rice and, for the main, a hot bowl of rajma.

Sauteed Brussels Sprouts with Coconut

Brussels Sprouts Poryial (South Indian Brussels Sprouts with Coconut)Brussels Sprouts Poryial (South Indian Brussels Sprouts with Coconut)
Recipe by
Cuisine: South Indian
Published on November 14, 2018

A simple dry curry of Brussels sprouts, tomato and coconut cooked with aromatic seeds and spices

Preparation: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 20 to 25 minutes

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  • 1 1/2 lbs (675 g) small Brussels sprouts
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons brown mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon split skinless urad dal
  • 1/2 teaspoon asafetida
  • small handful of dried curry leaves, crumbled
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika or chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 medium tomato, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste (optional)
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice, or to taste
  • 1/2 cup dried grated unsweetened coconut
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
  • Cut off the stems of the Brussels sprouts and remove any rough or brown leaves. If the sprouts are large, halve or remove more of the outer leaves. Cut a small cross in the base of each sprout and soak in salted water for 15 minutes. Drain and set aside.

  • Heat the oil in a large frying pan over moderately high heat. When the oil is hot, add the brown mustard seeds, cumin seeds and urad dal to the pan. Fry until the mustard seeds begin to splutter and pop and the urad dal darkens a few shades. Now stir in the asafetida and then the curry leaves, paprika or chili powder, turmeric, garam masla and nutmeg. Stir for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and tomato paste if using, reduce the heat to medium, and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring often, until the tomatoes begin to thicken.

  • Stir in the Brussels sprouts and mix well to coat. Now add the water, reduce the heat to medium-low, and cover the pan. Cook, stirring often, until the sauce is thickened and the Brussels sprouts are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Add a bit more water if the sauce seems too thick. Stir in the lemon juice and then toss in the coconut and sea salt.

  • Taste for seasoning and serve hot with hot fresh cooked white rice or flatbreads.

Makes 4 servings

Sauteed Brussels Sprouts

More ideas for Brussels sprouts from Lisa's Vegetarian Kitchen:
Brussels Sprouts and Mushroom Gratin with a Dijon Mornay Sauce
Brussels Sprouts Kulambu (Brussels in a Spicy Tomato Sauce)
Brussels Sprouts Lasagna
Brussels Sprouts Risotto


Shaheen said...

Thank you so so much for joining in with #EatYourGreens this month. I have in the past made an Indian style Salan/Curry with sprouts too and I think the addition of lemon would have enhanced it, that is why I am liking your Sprout poriyal and that is coming from a sprout hater.

The VegHog said...

I would love to try brussels sprouts in this fashion, I'm sure they go well here. Thank you for sharing this with Eat Your Greens!