Kallumakkaya Mulagu Arachadu(Mussel masala)

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Mussel is not one of the most common seafood one would make at home. It has its share of complication in terms of cleaning, availability etc. However, it is one of those things like crab that if you get it ready made, you would definitely not want to miss it 🙂 I am not sure how much mussel is popular in other parts of India or even the world. But I know in Kerala, being a seafood lovers hub, mussel is appreciated by most people. And coming to US, I have found Kiwi Mussel in Ranch 99 market. So I am guessing, it is may be used in most part of China too 😛

So when I first spotted mussel in the Ranch market, I had no clue if I should buy it ‘coz I knew the difficulty in cleaning this thing and I didn’t have any particular recipe in mind. That day I decided not to buy it. However, the very next week, I found myself craving for it. I know I used to like the fried version of mussel better, but I vaguely remembered my dad and brother liking the ‘mulagu aracha’ version of it. So I made both version. You can find Mussel fry recipe here.

Mulagu arachadu means, a curry primarily made of ground red chilli. This is no fancy dish. The beauty and taste of this dish is the simplicity of its preparation style. This is probably one of those items where you can just relish the goodness of a seafood by not altering/replacing the actual flavor it offers by the strong flavors of other spices.

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INGREDIENTS:

Kallumakkaya/Mussel – 10 nos
Shallots – 5 nos
Garlic – 1 pod
Onion – 1/2 of a medium sized
Ginger – 3/4 inch piece
Tomato – 1 no. small sized
Red chilli powder – 1/2 tsp
Oil(Coconut oil recommended) – 2 tbsp
Salt – to taste(apprx. 1/2 tsp)
Curry leaves – 4-5 leaves
Coriander leaves – 1 strand

METHOD:

1. Clean the mussels by removing the mud in it. Wash thoroughly and keep aside.
2. In a mixie/blender, grind shallots, red chilli powder and garlic into a fine paste.
3. Heat oil in a pan. Put sliced onion, ginger juliennes and curry leaves into it. Add salt at this point.
4. Once the onions turn pink, add the ground masala. Saute till the masala is cooked well.
5. Add sliced tomatoes and sauté till tomatoes are cooked.
6. To this add washed mussels and cook in low-medium flame.
7. Saute occasionally. Add little water and cook covered till mussels cook through.
8. You will know when the mussels are cooked when it becomes very soft and you can tear the center portion easily. Mussels are a little chewy even when cooked well.
9. Garnish with some chopped coriander leaves.

Serve with rice and stir fries 🙂

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