May 18th, 2011

Goan Vegetable Curry

Goan Vegetable Curry

Ro whisked me away to Goa for my birthday this year for some sun, sand and air. It was a welcome break for the three of us as we spent exclusive time with each other. Watching the sunrise amidst the chirping birds as I did my daily pranayam and suryanamsakar on the green lawn in front of our villa, the baby playing in the sand, soaking in the cool breeze and fresh air, hearing the sounds made by the waves as they splashed across and then silently moved away, seeing the sunset and absorbing the scenic beauty of nature made for a very rejuvenating holiday.

The many visits to Goa when I lived down south did not have the same effect on me, as being stuck in the brick & mortar & gas filled city of Mumbai, I value these getaways even more than before. The highlight of this visit for both of us as parents was to see our little one pottering about the lawn, the beach, the roads and exploring new sights and sounds, getting excited about everything around him and getting thrilled with the buggy rides.

I have always liked the customer friendly atmosphere prevalent in the Taj group of hotels and I cherished it even more this time as we were their guests with a toddler in tow. The genuine service attitude and attention to details as well as catering to specific demands is simply exemplary, an outcome of strong inbuilt values. Very few organizations have that inherent quality to make the guest feel at home and the Taj scores solid points here.

When I was talking to Chef Santan at the Fort Aguada, he handed over some Goan recipes, the first of which was a fish curry. Realizing that I’m a vegetarian, he smiled sweetly and said that I could replace any vegetable of my choice in this curry.

Back home, when I opened the recipes my eyes fell upon this curry again and I realized that this was not alien to me at all. Infact, I had grown up eating these coconut spiced gravies and they figure highly on my comfort food list. This curry is very similar to the many curries that my mother makes. Making this, takes me back to my mother’s kitchen and the meals served at my parental home eaten with siblings, cousins, family and friends.

Reminiscent of the coastal scents of Goa, the coconut trees, pristine beaches and fresh air, this curry with assorted vegetables in a coconut spiced gravy can be enjoyed over a lunch, brunch or dinner affair. A bowl of this curry, some well cooked basmati rice served with a pot of yogurt would make some souls happy for sure!

Goan Vegetable Curry

Use fresh seasonal vegetables of choice in this curry.


220 gm (2 cups) fresh or frozen coconut, grated
5 gm (1 tsp) tamarind
5 gm (1 tsp) fresh ginger
1/2 tsp turmeric powder (optional)

Spices, to be roasted

2 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/4 tsp peppercorns
2 or 3 dry red chillies

3/4 cup (375 ml) water

4 cups assorted vegetables
(I cup French beans, 1 cups carrots, 1/2 cup peas, 1/2 cups potatoes, 1 cup cauliflower)
1 litre (4 cups) water
2 tsp salt or to taste


2 tsp vegetable oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
2 dry red chillies
1 sprig curry leaves (optional)
1/2 tsp asafetida powder


In a small saucepan or a wok, on  medium heat, put in all the spices and dry roast until the coriander seeds turn golden brown and the spices begin to emit their aromatic flavours, about 3 to 4 minutes. (Note: You may have to decrease the heat, if the spices begin to burn or turn black.) It is absolutely essential to make sure that the spices don’t turn black.

In a blender or food processor, put in the coconut, tamarind, ginger, turmeric, the roasted spices and 3/4 cup water and grind to a fine paste.

In a saucepan put in the water and the cut vegetables, cover and cook till done, about 10 to 12 minutes. You might want to add cauliflower after the carrot and beans are half cooked, to prevent them from turning mushy.

After the vegetables are cooked, add salt and the ground paste and bring to a boil. You could add 1/4 to 1/2 cup more water if you want a thinner gravy.

In a small wok or saucepan, heat the oil over a medium flame, add in the mustard seeds and when they pop, put in the red chillies, curry leaves and asafetida powder, mix once and pour this into the vegetable curry. Give it a good mix and serve hot with rice, rotis or parathas.

I love to serve this curry with plain basmati rice and some plain yogurt which makes for a balanced satisfying meal.

Serves 4 to 6

Adapted from the recipe provided by chef Santan at Vivanta by Taj, Fort Aguada

Filed Under: Anniversary, Asafetida, Ayurvedic Cooking, Black Pepper, Carrot, Cauliflower, Chili ( dry red), Christmas/Easter, Coconut (fresh or frozen), Comfort Food, Coriander Seeds, Cumin Seeds (Jeera), Curries, Curry Leaves, Family Get Together, French Bean, Ginger (fresh), Gluten-free Recipes, Goa, Green Bean, Indian, Main Course, Mustard Seeds (rai), Pea, Potato, Potluck Party, Tamarind, Turmeric Powder, Vegan Friendly Recipes, Vegetable Oil, Vegetables · Tags: , , , ,

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Comments (27 Comments)

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  1. Sharmilee says:

    this curry sounds interesting and tempting..perfect for rice

  2. Wonderful recipe.. looks so tempting and inviting.. amazing snaps !!
    Indian Cuisine

  3. Rohit Kulkarni says:

    Awesome! What is awesome, is left to the figment of your imagination! :-))!! Brilliant pictures! Keep up the wonderful work and by the way, when am I getting a chance to taste this creation?

  4. prathibha says:

    This curry sound very much south Indian,even coconut is staple at my place…

  5. Anushruti says:

    Thank you everybody.

    @Ro Very soon, when I get back home.

    @Pratibha: There is a lot of similarity between this coastal dish and some of the dishes prepared in South India. Also, don’t forget Goa and Karnataka share borders, so similarities are bound to be there. 🙂

  6. What beautiful pictures. I have been to Goa just once about 10 years ago and would love to go again. Simple breath-taking views.

    Love the curry and the spices going in there 🙂

  7. Anamika says:

    You have a beautiful collection of recipes!!

  8. Sarah says:

    gorgeous pics! And lovely curry!

  9. Anushruti says:

    Priya…you said it right…simple breath taking views and the beauty of nature!

    Thank you Anamika & Sarah.

  10. marla says:

    Beautiful Post! Gonna link back to these awesome curry in my upcoming post 🙂

  11. Rebekah says:

    This looks very very yummy 🙂 but im also interested in the original recipe with the fish, could i perhaps get that recipe?

  12. Jayu Rao says:

    Hi Anushruti,

    Love your website for the lovely healthy recipes. You pen your thoughts so beautifully with each of your recipe posts.

    The day I make something from your website, my husband compliments my cooking for the day. So thanks to you for all the compliments I received from my family for the recipes!!!

    Why don’t you add more of your family photos in your website? Your mum, sister, husband, son & yourself, you all are so lovely.

    Take care!

  13. Anushruti says:

    Jayu: Very kind and sweet of you to give me such lovely compliments! And I’m so happy that you receive compliments from your husband after cooking from here! That’s a great compliment for me indeed! The story, post has to support the pictures strongly and since this is a public arena I find myself holding back a little when it comes to posting pictures of my son. Maybe one day ill be more comfortable. Thank you for your interest and I look forward to hearing from you again.

  14. Vasumathy says:

    i made this and it was a wonderful lunch for us today. instead of cooking it on stove top, i just steamed the whole dish. i feel stove top cooking will add more flavour to it. thanks a lot for this recipe.

  15. Archana says:

    Sounds great. I am glad you enjoyed Goa. Waiting for some more delicious recipes from you.

  16. Louise says:

    Nice cecipe, but I prefer to make the masala, fry the masala, add veg, cook for a couple of minutes, then add water, the veg absorbs some of the flavor of the masala, I add water based on how thick I want the gravy to be as well. I cut the veg small so they cook fast and I put them into the pot one by one based on how fast they cook. I generally serve this with rice.

  17. Anushruti says:

    Louise: India is the home of curries and hundreds of varieties of them are prepared here. This is one variation. Your method is great too and I use that style many a time too, its just that this curry doesnt happen to be one.


  19. Ashwini Kumble says:

    Dear Anu,

    Writing to you after a long time.. Just wanted to let you know that this recipe turned out super Yummy.. Just like most of your other curries, I blindly followed it and the result was awesome! 🙂


    Goan Vegetable Curry » DivineTaste…

  21. Erin says:

    How could this recipe be adapted using dried coconut or canned coconut milk?
    Looks great & thank you.

  22. Anushruti says:

    Rosie: I like red rice too. Nice that you ate it with red rice.

    Ashwini: Always happy to hear from you!

    Erin: You can try using canned coconut milk and add it along with the ground spices. Fresh or frozen grated coconut is available and it would be best if you could use it to maintain the sanctity of the recipe.

  23. […] in this blog I will be share the recipe of Goan vegetable curry that I learn from my Chef friend “Anish Theavar.” Although, I must confess that it I had some […]

  24. tejal sharma says:

    Hi anushruti,
    Its being a long time i have not thanked u for all the recipes i made from divine taste……and today i made this curry just thinking that once i make it the first thing i ll be doing is to thank you. Once again i thank you for such a easy and so full of flavours recipe which has made my day. I n my husband loved it very much.:)

  25. Anushruti says:

    tejal: I really appreciate your gesture. So happy to know that you liked this curry!

  26. […] Source: […]

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