We are well into 2021. There are a few things in life that never change from a cultural perspective. India, as you may know, is a land of rich cultural traditions and practices. This is evident from the fact that most of our rich cuisines and food are made of indigenous spices, local curry masalas, seasonings and flavours. And South Indian dishes primarily are prepared of coconut oil, without which the authentic taste is lost.
Coconut usually offers five types of food products viz. coconut water, coconut milk, oil, sugar and ‘flesh’ or ‘meat’, as we come to know from everyday use. In the south of India, especially Tamilnadu, coconut flesh is consumed in different ways: it is ground and made into a fine chutney with tempered whole spices for Idli, Dosa and Vada. Come down to Kerala, Avial is a hugely popular vegetable stew made with coconut milk taken along with appam (a pancake prepared from coconut milk and fermented rice batter).
In Goa, many everyday cuisines are prepared using coconut milk including Mass Kodi or Xacuti. Other popular dishes made of coconut milk include sanas (rice cakes) usually taken along with a sorpotel (spicy pork curry). When vegetables are cooked using minimal spice and a dose of desiccated coconut, it is called foogath. Pumpkin foogath is the most popular of all. Even if you take the most popular dishes of Goa, the Bebinc and Dos, they are made of either coconut or coconut milk. There is another popular tea-time cake during Christmas and New Year eve known as the Baath made of a generous amount of desiccated coconut. The flower clusters of the coconut give out a juice, which on fermentation, produces a local brew called coconut palm wine or toddy. There are also many Goan curry dishes that contain coconut cream in abundance.