Monday, 4 July 2016



          No bleak and gloomy, cold and windy monsoon season ever passes you by without ever compassionate mother nature silently working to cheer up her children. One such precious gift is the ubiquitous Cassia Tora or Senna Tora plant known as Taikilo in Konkani and Tavara or Takara in Malayalam (For more details, go to my Taikilya Bhojjo recipe). The heavenly taste of the tender leaves of this monsoon bush is brought out fully in this traditional Konkani stir-fry recipe. Be sure to cook and enjoy this one.


     1)    Taikilo (tender or young leaves of Cassia Tora plant) – 500 gm.

     2)    Jackfruit seeds with outer skin removed – 350 gm.
     3)    Coconut – ½ of a small one
     4)    Dry hot red chilies – 3 Nos.
     5)    Mustard seeds – ¼ teaspoon
     6)    Coconut oil – 2½ tablespoons
     7)    Salt – 1 teaspoon
     8)    Water – 450 ml.

To cook:

Wash and drain the Taikilo leaves. Chop or shred to fine bits. Make sure that every bit of the thick nylon-like peel of the jackfruit seeds is removed. Chop the seeds to fine bits or cut into cubes of around 3 mm. (inch) size.

Break each chili into 2 or 3 pieces and set aside. Grate the coconut. Set a wide cast-iron wok on high heat. Pour in the coconut oil and throw in the mustard seeds. As soon as the mustard seeds are about to finish popping, tip in the broken chilies. Stir once and chuck in the chopped jackfruit seeds.

Pour in 250 ml of water. Stir and cover with a lid or cloche. Turn down the heat and let cook for 5 minutes. Now tip in the chopped leaves and the salt. Pour in the remaining 200 ml. of water. Turn up the heat and stir well. As soon as it starts boiling, turn down the heat and cover with the lid. Let cook slowly for 15 to 20 minutes while stirring occasionally.

The leaves need to cook fully. Now tip in the grated coconut and mix it in nicely. Turn up the heat and stir every now and then till all the excess water at the base has evaporated. Switch off the heat.

Your exquisitely delicious Taikilya Upkari is now ready to serve. Serve hot with steaming rice and curry.



     1)    If you have a sweet tooth, you can sprinkle a little sugar over the Taikilya Upkari and enjoy it by itself.

     2)    Try making Taikily Upkari with finely chopped cashew nuts in place of jackfruit seeds and let me know.

     3)    The finer the jackfruit seeds are chopped, the tastier the upkari.

     4)    The jackfruit seeds need to be fresh for best taste.

     5)    The cast-iron wok infuses soluble iron and lends the finest taste to the upkari.

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