Theeyal ~ Small Onions And Brinjals

I have been wanting to try few recipes from Kerala cuisine prepared specially for Onam Sadhya meal. So when my friend 'R' mentioned and suggested the recipe for "Theeyal" from here, I decided to try it. Theeyal means 'burnt' dish and usually served in traditional sadhya meal. It is dish having spicy tangy taste with unique flavor mostly from roasted ingredients. The dish turned out so delicious that I had to reach for a second helping with hot rice. Below recipe is an adaptation and I have used brinjals along with shallot onions. 


200 gms shallots
100 gms brinjals, diced into thin slices
2 tbsp thick tamaring extract
Salt to taste
Sugar to taste
Pinch of asafoetida

For seasoning
2 tsp coconut oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
Few curry leaves

For grinding
1 tsp coconut oil
1 cup coconut
4-6 byadgi chillies
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp coriander powder
Pinch of turmeric powder

Soak tamarind in water to get thick extract about 2 tbsp. Keep it aside. Clean the shallots, immerse them in boiling water for 2 mins. Rinse under cold water. Trim the ends and then hold each shallot in between your fingers to squeeze and separate them from the skin.  If you are not able to clean as explained above then try the method explained here. Once clean cut them in half lengthwise. Wash and clean brinjal, trim the stem and the end. Cut them into thin slices.

Heat 1 tsp of coconut oil in a skillet pan and roast the grated coconut till the color turns golden brown. Take care not to burn it. Keep it aside. In the same skillet pan, roast byadgi chillies, coriander powder, turmeric powder and hing until a nice aroma spreads. Take care not to burn even these ingredients. Keep them aside and allow to cool. Once cool grind it to a smooth paste. Keep it aside

Heat 2 tsp coconut oil in pan and add mustard seeds. Allow them to pop, add curry leaves. Add sliced shallots, and saute it for 2 mins. Add brinjal slices and stir everything well. Close it with lid and cook it until brinjal pieces turn soft not mushy. Remove the lid, add tamarind extract and salt. Next add the ground paste and adjust the thickness by adding required amount of water. Let the curry come to a boil. Once you get the desired consistency, switch off the flame. Serve it hot with rice.  

Happy Cooking!


  1. theeyal looks nice and yumm.. it's my fav.. love it with rice..

  2. @ nandoos kitchen : finally came to know ur name Lisha Aravind :) thnks

  3. perfectly made, looks really delicious!