At my parents’ home at Calicut, comes a sprightly old lady named Maniyamma. She started to work as our house maid ever since I was 3 or 4 years of age. Though she is probably in her eighties now, she looks more like 50. Short and stocky, with a smiling visage, she even plays with a skipping rope with children in the family. Yet what impresses one most is her ability to create mouthwatering traditional Nair dishes. She often cooks for marriage feasts, the traditional Malayali sadya – a Kerala banana leaf feast. One of her dishes I love most is mulaku varutha puli or cheriyulli rasam, a fragrant pouring curry for hot rice or for upma. I always find that a take a generous second helping of upma or rice when this shallot rasam is before me. I must confess that both my husband and I found our mouths salivating when we were taking pictures of the curry for you, for such is its aroma. Do cook and enjoy this simple and easy to make dish!