Olan is a part of every Palakkad feast. It is light and bland side dish that goes well with sambar, pulungari as well as morkottaan.
Ash gourd – 1 kg
Snake gourd – 100 gms. – cut in 1” strips
Vella payaru (black-eyed peas) – 4 tbsp (soaked in water for a couple of hours and pressure-cooked)
Green chilli – 2 (slit)
Salt to taste
Coconut oil – 1 ½ tsp
Coconut milk/milk – 3 tbsp
Cut the as gourd in thin 1 ½” squares. Wash well.
Put it in a heavy-bottomed pan along with snake gourd pieces and add ¼ cup water, slit green chillies and salt and cook covered on low heat for some 10 minutes till it gets cooked.
Pressure-cook the black-eyed peas and mix it with the ash gourd.
Boil uncovered on high flame till the water evaporates.
Remove from fire.
Add a tsp of coconut oil and 3 tbsp of milk.
Mix well. Serve hot.
The olan will be ready in 15 minutes. If you use the pressure cooker for cooking rice, cook the black-eyed peas in a small vessel along with the rice – to save time. Mix the cooked peas to the olan and heat it before serving.
Variation - Elavan-mathan olan –
Ash gourd (400 gms) and raw pumpkin (400 gms) can be used or raw pumpkin (800 gms) alone – without the black-eyed peas and olan can be prepared as above.