Kohlrabi kootu is a lentil stew made with South Indian spices and kohlrabi. A delicious stew with the lovely fragrance of asafetida and coconut milk all combined with soft creamy lentils and vegetables such as kohlrabi, peas and green beans.
What is kootu?
Kootu is a South Indian lentil stew made with soft cooked lentils, veggies and spices. The spices in kootu are minimal in a Tamil South Indian kootu. Basically its mustard seeds, cumin seeds, asafetida powder and curry leaves. What’s amazing is how these minimal spices flavor the kootu so nicely. Typically served with white rice, this makes a wonderful vegan complete meal.
Using kohlrabi in kootu
Kohlrabi is an odd looking vegetable I feel. The flavor is rather non existent kinda like zucchini. But unlike squash kohlrabi has a potato-like texture which is great in kootu as it adds a nice hefty veggie texture. In fact, my family thought the kohlrabi was actually potatoes.
When I was researching kohlrabi I actually found a recipe for kohlrabi fries that look just like french fries! Also, you can not only use the kohlrabi veggie but the greens too.
4 Easy Steps
In just four easy steps you can make this delicious kootu. First, cook the lentils until tender. I use the instapot and pressure cook on high for 20 minutes. Second, cook the veggies on the stovetop until soft. Next, combine the lentils and veggies and mix in coconut milk. Lastly add spiced oil. Easy, delicious, wholesome, kootu tastes amazing alongside a steaming bowl of white rice with a dollop of ghee. Give it a try!
1 cup toor daal (pigeon peas)
2 kohrabi skin peeled and cut into small chunks
1 cup frozen peas
2 – 3 cups thinly sliced green beans
4 garlic cloves minced
1 inch piece of ginger peeled and minced
1 green chili (optional)
Cilantro for garnish
Juice of 1 lemon
1 can coconut milk
Salt and black pepper
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp asafetida powder
Few curry leaves if you have
Step 1: Cook toor daal with 2 cups water until the lentils are tender. I use the instapot and pressure cook on high for 20 minutes. Set aside.
Step 2: Warm 1 tbsp oil. Add the garlic and ginger and fry for 30 seconds, then add the kohlrabi and green beans plus 1/2 tsp black pepper and a little salt. Cook veggies until tender. Then add green peas and cook for a minute.
Step 3. To the veggies add the cooked lentils along with the water it is in, plus can of coconut milk. Bring this to a low boil. In the meantime make the spiced oil.
Step 4: In a small saute pan warm 2 tbsp ghee. Add the mustard seeds and let them pop. Once the mustard seeds stop popping turn the stove off. To the ghee add cumin seeds plus asafetida powder and curry leaves. Fry them in the warm oil for a few seconds. Then add it to the kootu and stir in. Taste and adjust for salt. Finish with lemon juice and garnish with fresh cilantro.
Serve with white rice and garnish with extra ghee.