Sunday, January 13, 2008

Cabbage Thoran (Shredded Cabbage With Fresh Coconut)

Thoran is generally a dry Slaw-like vegetable dish with coconut. Quick-cooking Cabbage Thoran is a classic dish delicately spiced with the traditional Kerala flavors of coconut, chili and cumin seeds. Cumin seeds must be freshly crushed; ready made ground cumin just will not do. Urad dal is often used as a seasoning in South Indian cooking; the roasted dal gives the dishes a mild nutty flavor as well as adding a protein boost. Urad dal is a creamy whilte split and skinless bean about the size of a short rice grain. 

Cabbage thoran is served with everyday meals as well as major feasts. The only time consuming part in making this vegetable is the fine chopping! This mild dish is well liked by even little children.


1 small green Cabbage
1/2 tsp Turmeric
1 green chili
1/4 cup freshly grated coconut
1 tsp cumin
1 dry Red Chili
1 tsp salt or to taste


1 or 2 Tbsp Canola Oil
1/2 tsp brown Mustard Seeds
1 Tbsp Urad Dal
1 pinch Asafoetida (optional)
1 sprig fresh Curry Leaves


Finely shred or chop the cabbage. Slit the end of the green chili. Break the red chili and shake out and discard the seeds to reduce its spiciness. Coarsely crush the cumin seeds and red chili in a mortar with the pestle then add coconut and crush to mix. Set aside.

Heat the oil in a large skillet and add the mustard seeds and urad dal. Cover and cook until mustard seeds slow down popping. Quickly add the asafoetida if using and the curry leaves and green chili. Stir for a few seconds until the chili and curry leaves are softened slightly. Stir in the shredded or chopped cabbage, turmeric, and the salt. Cook stirring frequently until the cabbage softens. Stir in the coconut and cook for a few more minutes. Serve hot with rice or chapati and any dal or rasam for a simply delicious meal.


Frozen or dessicated coconut can be substituted for the fresh. One or two shredded carrots and/or fresh or frozen peas could be stirred in with the cabbage.


Anonymous said...

Simply yummy!!!...thanks Geetha :)- Rudri

Geetha said...

Rudri, I am glad to know that you liked the thoran. Looks like you are cooking up a storm :D! Wow!
- Geetha