Beetroot Thoran Recipe – How to make Beetroot Thoran

beetroot thoran recipe

While growing up, I hated the sight of beetroot in my food, except for the recipe in this post and beetroot halva. Tastes change with time and now this lovely veggie has become a part of my meal almost everyday.

We used to call all the dry or wet vegetable dishes as bhaji at home. At my husband’s place all dry or wet vegetable dishes are called as sabzi. When I use the word bhaji, they don’t understand what I say.

So for me in proper punjabi language, this recipe is beetroot ki sabzi. But it is not beetroot sabzi. It is not atleast the way the north indian sabzis are made.

My mom used to make this recipe and I used to call it beetroot bhaji. I knew that this was a recipe from Kerala, but technically I did not know the name of this recipe.  I have also had this recipe made by the kerala restaurants in mumbai and the taste of this beetroot bhaji was awesome. I used to love the beetroo this way, then, and always would ask my mom to make it like this.

Beetroot Thoran

Now, thanks to the internet, I know that technically this recipe is of Beetroot Thoran. There are many Kerala recipes that mom makes, but I do not know what they are called in Malayalam.

Now what is a Thoran:

Thoran is a traditional Kerala dry vegetable recipe made with grated or finely chopped vegetables like yam (suran), bittergourd (karela) , cabbage (bandh gobhi), carrots (gajar) , beans (beans like chawli beans, french beans) , red amaranth leaves , drumsticks or drumstick leaves. The basic ingredients in which the vegetables are cooked are shallots, coconut, curry leaves, mustard seeds, turmeric powder, green chili or red chili and coconut oil.

Thoran is one of the dishes that is served in the Sadya along with the other dishes. ( A Sadya is a grand feast where a vegetarian meal comprising of various dishes is served on a plantain/banana leaf.)

There are some variations in the thoran like adding ginger, garlic, cumin seeds, chili powder, using onions instead of shallots. In fact, my mom used to make a thoran of all the vegetables mentioned above.

If you do not like the raw taste of beetroot, than you should try this recipe. Its great. It goes very well with rotis, parathas and specially the Kerala Paratha and even steamed rice. You could also have this recipe as a side dish.

In this recipe, I wanted some spiciness that would soften the sweetness of beetroot and coconut. So, I added both red chili and green chili along with ginger. I also added coriander powder, red chili powder and crushed whole garam masala. This was my variation to this recipe and the beetroot thoran was awesome and great.

You can either chop the beetroots finely or grate them. Grated beetroots will cook faster than the chopped ones.

For all those who do not have fresh coconut, you could easily substitute with dry or dessicated coconut. Of course fresh coconut has a different taste, but the thoran tastes equally good with dessicated coconut too.

beetroot thoran recipe

If you are looking for similar recipes then do check cabbage thoran, ash gourd thoran and beetroot tikki.

Beetroot Thoran recipe details below:

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Beetroot Thoran: How to make Beetroot Thoran
 
Prep time
Cook time
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a dry and delectable mildly spiced dish made with beetroots having sweet notes from the beetroot as well as the coconut.
Author:
Recipe type: main
Cuisine: south indian
Serves: 4
Ingredients (american measuring cup used, 1 cup = 250 ml)
  • 3 medium sized or 2 large beetroots (finely chopped or grated)
  • 4 to 5 tsbp grated fresh coconut
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds (optional)
  • 4-5 shallots (quartered or sliced)
  • 10-12 curry leaves (whole or chopped)
  • 1 or 2 whole red chilies
  • 1 green chili, finely chopped
  • ¾ tsp finely chopped ginger
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • ¼ tsp red chili powder (optional)
  • 1 tsp coriander powder (optional)
  • 1 cardamom, 2 peppercorns, ½ ” cinnamon, 1 clove ( crushed to a medium coarse powder in a pestle and mortar) or ¼ tsp garam masala (optional)
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil or sunflower oil
  • salt as required
Instructions
  1. Heat the coconut oil in a kadai or wok.
  2. Add the mustard seeds. When they pop, add the cumin seeds.
  3. The cumin seeds will start to sizzle now.
  4. Immediately add the shallots.
  5. Fry the shallots on a medium flame for 2 minutes.
  6. Now add the whole red chili, chopped green chili and ginger.
  7. Fry for a minute.
  8. Add the curry leaves.
  9. Lower the flame & ddd all the dry masala powders including the crushed and powdered whole garam masala.
  10. Make sure not to burn the masala.
  11. Fry for a half a minute and then add the beetroot.
  12. Mix the chopped beetroot with salt.
  13. Cook the beetroot without a lid with occasional stirrings.
  14. If the beetroot is grated, they will cook faster.
  15. This takes approx 10-12 minutes for grated beetroot.
  16. You can also keep the beetroot slightly crunchy if you prefer.
  17. When the beetroot is cooked, add the grated coconut and cook for a minute or two just for the flavors to blend in.
  18. Switch off the flame.
  19. Serve Beetroot Thoran hot with rice, chapatis or even parathas.
Notes
To facilitate faster cooking of the beetroot, you could add some ¼ cup or ½ cup of water to the beetroot.


You can also cover and cook the beetroot
.

if the moisture dries up and the thoran looks dry, then add some water while cooking


{ 16 Responses }

  1. uma says

    hello dassanna,
    may i know about the pot you have used in making this recipe. are there any other recipes of beet?
    thank you

      • uma says

        i meant to ask about the vessel you have kept the curry in. not the one you have cooked i know that is an iron one. but the other beautiful vessel with a top in which you have kept the cooked curry .what is it made of ? i have never seen such a nicely designed one.
        thank you

  2. Vidhi says

    I tried out the recipe for the very first time and it tastes brilliant!!
    I’m new to south indian style cooking but just loved the flavour!!
    Thank you for sharing =)

  3. says

    I am always searching for new ways to use beetroot, and have been reading your blog in a while; I am really impressed by the diversity of Indian cuisines, your blog is a constant inspiration! So when I saw this recipe, I knew I would have to try it some day. That day was today. And I absolutely loved it! I will certainly make it again in the future, especially during the winter, when I have too much beetroot!

  4. susan thomas says

    I did’nt think of adding coriander and garam masala to the thoran. Shall try it.
    Thanks Dassana.

  5. Medha says

    This turned out awesome…i usually dont like dishes where coconut is added but this is very tasty..Thanks

  6. Tanisha says

    But i thought thoran is something in which coconut is spread over sauteed veggies and allowed to cook with the lid shut tightly shut. The flavours of the coconut and the veggies blend and create an irresistable thoran.