Brahmi Leaves / Vallarai Keerai Chutney(Indian Penny wort)

Botanical Name - Centella asiatica is called as Brahmi in Hindi and Vallarai Keerai in Tamil.

To learn more about this leaf click here

Centella asiatica, a perennial herb also known as gotu kola, produces fan-shaped, green leaves that are harvested and used for medicinal purposes.

Some benefits of this leaves

Centella asiatica is used to revitalize the brain and nervous system, increase attention span and concentration, and combat aging. It also has antioxidant properties and works for venous insufficiency. The role of Centella asiatica extract in the treatment of memory enhancement and other neurodegenerative disorders. Source Wikipedia.

It has been used for wound healing, better circulation, memory enhancement, cancer, vitality, general tonic, respiratory ailments, detoxifying the body, treatment of skin disorders (such as psoriasis and eczema), revitalizing connective tissue, burn and scar treatment, clearing up skin infections, slimming and edema, arthritis, rheumatism, treatment of liver and kidneys, periodontal disease, strengthening of veins (varicose veins), blood purifier, high blood pressure, sedative, anti-stress, anti-anxiety, an aphrodisiac, immune booster, anabolic and adaptogen etc. Source http://www.anyvitamins.com/centella-asiatica-info.htm

This post has been in my pictures folder for 2 years. Recently while looking at the pictures saw many which has not been posted. I will be leaving to India in 2 weeks so thought of posting all pending( atleast some) before I leave. So here I am with a very healthy nutritious and tasty chutney for you all. The leaves were freshly grown in a pot at my mom's house. They look so cute and love their fan shaped leaves. Making thogayal(thuvayal), chutney, dhal,sambar, poriyal with this leaf is very common in my house. Today I am posting the recipe for making a simple chutney.


Brahmi Leaves - 1 cup
Green chillies - 2 or 3(as spice needed)
Garlic - 2 or 3 flakes
Tamarind - 1/2 inch
Coconut - 1/4 cup grated
Oil - 1 or 2 tsp

Heat 1 tsp of oil and add the leaves saute for a minute and next add green chillies garlic and tamarind. Fry till the leaves shrink. In the end add grated coconut and saute once or twice. Switch off and cool. Take this is a mixie and add salt and grind. In the same kadai add the remaining oil and heat ,add the tempering ingredients like a little of mustard seeds urad dhal and curry leaves. When they splutter reduce flame and the ground paste. Saute for 1 for 2 minutes. Remove and serve with idli or dosa.



Arbi / Taro in Tamarind Gravy - Chamagadda Pulusu - Seppankizhangu Puli Kuzhambu

It has been long since I posted something new. The reason being many with kids various competition, travelling, birthdays and shopping. Everyday I think I have to update my blog, but time just runs and then I just postpone doing. Today thought I have to somehow post and here I am which has been in my drafts for many months. This is a very simple and easy gravy that goes well with rice and papad. Try it you will definitely like it.

Taro / arbi - 4 or 5 medium
Onion - 2 medium or few pearl onions/shallots roughly chopped
Tomato - 1 chopped fine
Tamarind - 1 small lime size
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Sambar Powder - 1 1/2 tbsp
Garlic - 5 flakes(optional)
Jaggery - a small piece(optional)

For tempering:-
Mustard Seeds and Urad dhal - very little
Curry leaves - 1 sprig
Asafoetida - few pinch
Oil - 1 or 2 tbsp( preferably gingelly oil)

Wash taro to remove the dirt and take them in a vessel with enough water and boil to cook. Cook for 10 - 15 minutes in medium flame until they are just tender but not mushy. Switch off and discard water. Cool completely and peel the skin. Chop into thick cubes and keep aside.

Soak tamarind in 2 cups of water for 20 - 30 mts and extract pulp. Keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan and add mustard seeds and urad dhal. Also add curry leaves and asafoetida. Wait till they splutter and add chopped onions. Fry till transculent. At this stage can add some peeled garlic flakes which optional. Fry till nice brown. Then add chopped tomatoes and fry till they are mashed and pulpy and oil leaves out. Next reduce flame and add the powders( turmeric powder and sambar powder- see instead of sambar powder can add chilli powder,coriander powder and cumin powder). Saute in oil for less than a minute and pour in tamarind pulp. Allow it to boil and bubble up. Midway add the cooked and chopped taro pieces. Allow everything to cook together and till they gravy thickens. Add salt and a very small piece of jaggery(optional). Switch off and serve with rice and papad.