October 14, 2009

Banana Pulissery

At home in India, the only time we had a complete vegetarian dish was on Onam. Unlike Eid during which we always have feast in our house and then go to cousins during the evening, for Onam we had all my cousins come over to my house, wear set sarees, make pookalam and have a grand feast. We will be playing and laughing our hearts out and then you’ll hear the call…”Sadya ready bakshanam kazhikan vayo”.

When you go inside The hall will be cleared of all the furniture’s and a big mat will be spread and then the banana leaf. There will be 8 to 10 kinds of veggies dishes. Man thus it make my mouth water. And oh…the payasam. We always had 2 kinds of payasam!!

It sure used to be a grand celebration. But after coming here we don’t get the same fun somehow!!

Boy I miss those days!

Mom used to make this kidilam pulissery. Sometimes with pineapple other times with banana. She said it’s not the real pulissery but for us that was enough. I have made it a couple of times and it always turned out delicious. Mom’s version doesn’t have coconut in it. So here is the recipe for my mom’s banana pulissery.




• 1 large ripe banana

• 1/4 tsp turmeric powder

• 1 cups yogurt

• 1 tbsp thinly sliced shallots

• 2 small green chilies

• 1 tbsp thinly chopped ginger

• Salt to taste

For the garnish

• 1 tsp oil

• 1/2 tsp mustard seeds

• 1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds

• 2 dry red chilies

• a few curry leaves


  • Peel and cut the banana into small pieces. In a saucepan, place the banana pieces, shallots, slit green chilies, ginger, turmeric powder and salt, and pour just enough water to cover the ingredients.
  • Cook covered till the water is boiling, remove the cover and cook it on medium heat till the banana pieces are really soft, and most of the water is gone. Mash the banana pieces (I like mine a little chunky).
  • Reduce the heat to low flame, and pour the yogurt into the saucepan. Stir well to combine the mashed banana pieces with the yogurt. Keep stirring till the gravy is heated through, don’t boil. Remove from the heat.
  • In a small frying pan, heat oil and add the mustard seeds. When they start to splutter, add the fenugreek seeds and fry for a few seconds. Add the curry leaves and red chilies and. Pour this over the prepared banana gravy and mix well.