Jaffna Kool (Jaffna Seafood Soup)

I feel like long weekends and summer parties are meant for Jaffna Kool. Jaffna Kool use to be one of my favourite things to eat. Unfortunately, during my pregnancy last year, I developed an aversion to it and couldn’t eat it. I found that even after I gave birth, the smell made me nauseous. I however, have such fond family memories of eating it before then, that I wanted to love it again.  I’m happy to say that I tried and made a version that I can enjoy now. I realized what bothered me most about it was the smell of fish bones, and while my mom insists this is what adds the favour to it, I used just the fillets, which didn’t give it the fishy smell. I’m not sure if this is as authentic as using whole fish, but its my preferance and it works for me! I hope you enjoy it. 

Jaffna Kool (Jaffna Seafood Soup)
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For the Kool itself
  1. 200 grams 
Odiyal Maa (palmyra flour) and 2 cups cold water
  2. 5 + cups
water
  3. ¼ cup 
sambar rice
  4. Handful - Jackfruit seeds
  5. 2 cups worth Murungai Illai (Drumstick leaves)
  6. 1 cup Snake beans
  7. Salt
  8. Pepper
  9. Turmeric
  10. A lime sized tamarind piece
  11. The seafood you add is subjective to you, in this specific recipe I added a box of crabs, 12 gigantic grilling shrimp, 15-20 regular sized shrimps and 7 basa fillets. You can add whole light fish, which is what is authentically used.
For grinding
  1. 10-15 red dried chillies
  2. salt
  3. Half to 1 tablespoon peppercorns
  4. 1 tablespoon cumin
  5. 1 bulb garlic, peeled
  6. Tip: Grind everything except the garlic first, so it becomes a fine powder, then grind the garlic with it. Then you have a paste you can use. You can add some water to help it grind if you need to.
Instructions
  1. Before you start cooking, it's best to have some prep done.
  2. Odiyal maa. This is the key to the recipe, it adds thickness to the soup. Odiyal maa has alot of threads in it from the packets, be sure to sift out these threads before using it. Once you have sifted it out, and have only powder remaining, add 2-3 cups of water to help it dissolve. Set aside for at least an hour before using. Do this first and then your other prep so that the timing will be enough.
  3. Take a tamarind piece from the solid tamarind blocks, a lime sized amount, and make a paste of it using 1 cup of water. Let it sit. You will later add this to the odiyal man mix, so let it sit out for now. I assume you can use less if you are using the paste, but I have never tried it with such.
  4. Prep your vegetables - cut the snake beans into 3-4 cm pieces, wash the jackfruit seeds and wash the murungai illai leaves. You can also add maravalli kilangu to this (cassava chunks) as it helps cut the spice. I didn't have any on hand, that's why I didn't use any.
  5. Prep your seafood - wash and clean the seafood and set it aside.
Now to make the soup
  1. In a large pot, add 5 cups of water and bring to a boil.
  2. Add salt to taste (I added 2 tablespoons) and a tablespoon of turmeric.
  3. Add the jackfruit seeds, rice, and snake beans. You want to add whatever takes longest to cook first.
  4. Check to see if the rice has cooked, once the rice is cooked, add the seafood, minus the fish. Fish cooks very quickly, so you want to add it last so that it retains its structure. If you add it too soon, it will fall apart and you won't see it in your soup.
  5. Add the fish.
  6. Add the chili paste and half the tamarind paste to the odiyal maa bowl which has been sitting out for at least an hour. Ensure it all fuses together. Pour this mixture into your pot.
  7. Simmer, adjust for salt and pepper. Add the remaining tamarind paste if needed (I usually do, but some people may want less).
  8. Add murungai illai leaves and remove from heat.
  9. Serve hot.
Notes
  1. You need a large wide and tall pot for this, a soup pot works best.
  2. Odiyal maa has alot of threads in it from the packets, be sure to sift out these threads before using it.
  3. Grind the paste ingredients everything except the garlic first, so it becomes a fine powder, then grind the garlic with it. Then you have a paste you can use. You can add some water to help it grind if you need to.
  4. Eating this can get extra messy, so its a good idea to have lots of newspapers and napkins around to help.
Eelam Flavour - Tamil Recipes https://www.eelamflavour.com/

My Mom’s Fish Curry

Main Dishes, Seafood | March 15, 2017 | By

My mom’s fish curry is the best. I’m not a big fan of fish, but I’ll eat this any day. The fish she usually uses is maangkani paarai. #eelamflavour #fishcurry#homemade #tamil #tamilfood #foodie#foodphotography #foodblogger #spices#spicyfood #curry #momscooking

 

Crab Curry/ Nandu Kulambu

Main Dishes, Meat, Seafood | September 15, 2016 | By

Crab curry is probably my favourite thing to eat. I reserve this dish for weekends, when you can sit back, relax and enjoy eating this meal. I made this crab curry last weekend. The aromas in this dish are just heavenly – when you make the spice mix and grind it, the curry leaves emit this beautiful aroma that makes hungry immediately!

This pairs well with rice, veggie curries and a side sald of chopped tomatoes and cucumber mixed with yogurt.

IMG_1536

Shrimp Fry

Main Dishes, Seafood | February 16, 2016 | By

Shrimp

Shrimp Fry
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Ingredients
  1. Shrimp - 400 g (deveined)
  2. Turmeric powder
  3. Salt - to taste
  4. Red chili powder - 1 -2 tablespoons (you can add more to increase the heat)
  5. Curry leaves - 5-7
  6. 2 medium onions - 1 for frying, 1 for garnishing
  7. Ketchup - 2 tablespoons
  8. Lemon - to garnish
  9. Coriander leaves/cilantro - to garnish
  10. Bell peppers - to garnish
  11. Mustard seeds - half tablespoon
  12. Green chilies - for garnish and frying (you can choose how much to add)
Instructions
  1. Clean the shrimp. Make sure to de-vein the shrimp on both sides of the shrimp. This is very important for the taste. You can leave to keep the shell on or off.
  2. Wash the shrimp thoroughly with turmeric powder and pat dry with paper towels.
  3. Put all the shrimp into a dry bowl and add salt (don't add all of your salt here, just some), a pinch of turmeric, 1 tablespoon of red chilli powder and let it marinate for half an hour - an hour.
  4. Heat oil in a pan, and add mustard seeds, 1 onion slivered, 5-7 curry leaves and fry for 1 minute.
  5. Add a some salt and let it fry.
  6. Add the shrimp, let it cook until it cooks thoroughly each side. 3-4 minutes.
  7. Add 2 tablespoons of ketchup and lightly fry.
  8. Remove from heat.
  9. Squeeze some lemon juice (optional).
  10. You can garnish it with cut up onion slices, cilantro and bell peppers.
Eelam Flavour - Tamil Recipes https://www.eelamflavour.com/

Spicy Mussels

Seafood, Side Dishes | December 14, 2015 | By

Whenever I have mussels, I am reminded of my brother and sister, who love mussels. This makes a great starter for a dinner party. This isn’t an Eelam style recipe, more of a fusion. I hope you enjoy this 🙂 

Mussels

Spicy Mussels
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Ingredients
  1. Mussels - scrubbed and debearded
  2. Cumin Seeds – 1 teaspoon
  3. Chili powder – to taste, I added half a tablespoon
  4. Jaffna curry powder – half a tablespoon
  5. Onion – 1 chopped
  6. Butter – 2 tablespoons
  7. Garlic - Half a bulb, cut finely
  8. Spicy sausage – 1 whole
  9. White cooking wine – 1 cup
  10. Tomato – diced very finely 1-2
  11. Salt – to taste
  12. Coriander leaves – for garnish
Instructions
  1. Heat up butter in a large pan and let it melt.
  2. Add onions and let it cook until it becomes translucent, usually around 6 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and cumin seeds and spicy sausage and cook for another 8 minutes.
  4. Add diced tomatoes, slivered zucchini, chili powder, teaspoon of Jaffna curry powder and salt.
  5. Lower the heat and add a cup of white cooking wine.
  6. Add the mussels and let them cook until they open. Discard any unopened shells, about 4 minutes.
  7. Garnish with coriander leaves.
  8. Enjoy ☺
Eelam Flavour - Tamil Recipes https://www.eelamflavour.com/

Tilapia with Red Onions

Meat Dishes, Seafood | November 29, 2015 | By

This is an easy weekend dinner that can be prepared relatively quickly. 

IMG_3762

Tilapia with Red Onion
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Ingredients
  1. Tilapia fillets - 4
  2. Paprika - 1 tablespoon
  3. Chill powder - 1 tablespoons
  4. Lemon - 2 sliced
  5. Salt - to taste
  6. Turmeric - 0.5 teaspoon
  7. Fennel seeds - 0.25 teaspoon
  8. Red onion - 1 whole cut
Instructions
  1. Mix all the ingredients together with the fillets and let it sit in the fridge for 1 hours
  2. Place the fillets on a baking pan and bake for 15 minutes (5-7 each side) on 350. Broil for 2 minutes on high.
  3. Garnish with rosemary leaves and parsley.
  4. Serve with lemon on the fish.
Eelam Flavour - Tamil Recipes https://www.eelamflavour.com/

Nethali Poriyal

Meat, Seafood, Side Dishes | November 26, 2015 | By

Nethali poriyal (anchovy fry) is one of my husband’s favourite dishes. It makes a wonderful side with fish curry. Since you eat the bones of this fish as they are so small, you get lots of calcium from this dish. 

NEthiliFry

Nethali Poriyal
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Ingredients
  1. Nethili Fish Fry - 1 cup
  2. Oil - enough to fry the fish, coconut oil is best to mask the smell of the fish.
  3. Curry leaves - 2-3 springs
  4. Fennel seeds - 1/2 spoon
  5. Chilli powder - 2 spoons
  6. Green chilies - 2-3 slivered
  7. Jaffna curry powder- 2 spoons
  8. Turmeric powder - 1/4 spoon for marinate, 2 spoons to clean
  9. Coriander powder - 1 spoon
  10. Ginger garlic paste - 2 spoons
  11. Lemon or lime juice - 2 spoons
  12. Salt - to taste
  13. 1 onion - cut very thinly
Instructions
  1. Wash the fish a few times with turmeric powder. Wash at least 3-4 times with different water. Remove the heads, you can cut them off.
  2. Pat dry the fish with a paper towel.
  3. Mix together curry leaves, chill powder, green chilies, Jaffna curry powder, coriander powder, ginger garlic paste, lemon and salt with the fish and let it marinate overnight in a silver or glass bowl. The curry leaves help mask the smell of the fish.
  4. Bring the marinated fish to room temperature.
  5. Heat oil in a pan and fry the onion. Remove from the pan.
  6. Fry the fish and additional curry leaves in the remaining oil, you can add more oil if needed, about 7 minutes each side or until cooked throughly.
  7. Remove from pan, taste for salt, and add salt if needed. Top with fried onion.
  8. Enjoy!
Eelam Flavour - Tamil Recipes https://www.eelamflavour.com/

Eraal Kulambu – Shrimp/Prawn Curry

Main Dishes, Seafood | November 14, 2015 | By

 

Eraal Kulambu (shrimp/prawn curry) is my favourite dish. It is probably one of the quickest dishes to make. I often make this on weekday nights after work since it has a short cooking time, quick thawing time and preparation time. If you actually clean the prawns or shrimp and leave it in your freezer, then it becomes even more easier to quickly make a meal. You can use either prawns or shrimp. 

ShrimpCurry

Eraal Kulambu
Prawn/Shrimp Curry
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
32 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
32 min
Ingredients
  1. Shallots 13-15
  2. Cumin seeds - 1-1.5 teaspoons
  3. Peppercorns - 1 tablespoon ground
  4. Garlic - 1 bulb
  5. Ginger - small sliver
  6. Cinnamon Stick
  7. Fennel Seeds - 1 teaspoon
  8. Fenugreek seeds - 1 teaspoon
  9. Mustard Seeds - 1 teaspoon
  10. Jaffna Curry Powder - 3 tablespoons
  11. Curry Leaves
  12. Tumeric - a pinch
  13. Pepper Powder or Paprika (optional)
  14. Tamarind Paste
Instructions
  1. Clean the shrimp – remember to remove the shell and devein both sides of the shrimp. The veins hold a lot of sand and this does not taste good in the curry. Wash thoroughly.
  2. Mix tamarind paste with water in a small bowl and let it sit.
  3. In a mixing bowl, add the cleaned shrimp, ground peppercorns, salt and turmeric and let it sit for a little while.
  4. Heat oil in a pan and add cut shallots, ginger, cinnamon, garlic, cumin seeds, mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds and fennel seeds. Stir frequently to prevent burning.
  5. Add the tamarind water after straining all the pulp and curry powder. The amount of Jaffna curry powder you use depends on how spicy you want it, and how much you are cooking. For the amount shown in this photo, I used 3 big tablespoons. I also added in paprika to add more spice. Let it cook for 2- 3 minutes. Stirring occasionally to prevent burning. You can add water here if you want more kulambu.
  6. Add the curry leaves, shrimp and cook until it turns completely pink. About 3 minutes. Shrimp cooks fast. Do not over cook it otherwise it will taste rubbery.
  7. Taste for salt and adjust if needed.
  8. Serve.
Notes
  1. If you ever feel like you added too much spice, the way to cut the heat is to add milk. Add a little milk to your curry if this happens. Make sure you do not leave your curry out to sit if you do this as it will spoil quickly because of the milk.
Eelam Flavour - Tamil Recipes https://www.eelamflavour.com/

Puli Kanji

Featured, Home Remedies, Seafood | September 27, 2015 | By

Puli Kanji is the equivalent of chicken soup in Western cultures, eaten when you are suffering from a cold or fever. This was made by my mother-in-law, and it tasted delicious! Serve with a slice of lemon, and squeeze lemon before eating. This is key to the flavour. Enjoy!

Puli Kanji
Serves 4
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. Red/Wild rice 1/2 cup
  2. Prawns cleaned ½ - 1 cup
  3. Green chillies 4 -6
  4. Garlic cloves - 2 bulbs (don't skimp on this!)
  5. Shallots 7-15 (shallots add flavour)
  6. Tamarind paste 1-4 teaspoons
  7. Salt to taste (salt is really important for flavour here, so make sure you taste the salt as you go)
  8. Water 5-6 cups
  9. Murunga Leaves 1-1.5 cups
Instructions
  1. Boil water in a pot and add rice.
  2. Wait until water is boiling again and add the prawns, diced garlic, diced onions, curry powder and cook until rice and prawns are soft.
  3. Add chillies and murunga leaves, tamarind paste and salt.
  4. Stir and simmer.
  5. Serve with a slice of lemon, and squeeze lemon before eating. This is key to the flavour. Enjoy!
Notes
  1. When cleaning murunga leaves, make sure you wash them on the stems before you remove them from the stems. Otherwise, it is hard to wash them.
  2. Serve with a slice of lemon, and squeeze lemon before eating. This is key to the flavour. Enjoy!
Eelam Flavour - Tamil Recipes https://www.eelamflavour.com/

Basa Fillets with Carrots and Pomegranate

Featured, Main Dishes, Seafood | September 27, 2015 | By

Basa Fillets with Carrots and Pomegranate
Serves 3
A delicious Basa Fillets with Carrots and Pomegranate
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
40 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
40 min
Ingredients
  1. 0.5 teaspoon curry powder
  2. 0.5 teaspoon fish seasoning
  3. 0.5 teaspoon cumin seeds
  4. 0.5 to 1 teaspoon paprika
  5. Salt (to taste)
  6. 0.5 teaspoon turmeric powder
  7. 1 teaspoon crushed peppercorns
  8. 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar (you can use more if you want it to be more tangy)
  9. ~ 8 shallots
  10. 4 whole carrots
  11. Half a pomegranate
  12. Butter
Instructions
  1. Butter a cooking pan.
  2. Mix together cleaned fish fillets (I used basa, but you can use any fish fillets) with the curry powder, fish season, cumin seeds, paprika, salt, turmeric powder, peppercorns and balsamic vinegar. Let it sit in the fridge for 2 hours.
  3. Remove and place the fish fillets on the pan. Preheat the oven.
  4. Cut the shallots and mix them together with diced carrots, pomegranate and some balsamic vinegar and evenly place them over the fillets.
  5. Sprinkle parley flakes over the fillets.
  6. Bake for 20-30 minutes, broil for another 2-5 minutes.
  7. Serve and enjoy.
Eelam Flavour - Tamil Recipes https://www.eelamflavour.com/