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Ulli Thandu Thoran – South Indian Stir-fried Onion Scapes

A stir fried dish from the South Indian state of Kerala of Onion Scapes that is mildly spiced and garnished with fresh grated coconut.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Cuisine south indian
Servings 4 servings


  • 2 big bunches Onion Scapes
  • 1 1/2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 1/2 gram tsp blacklentils/ urad dal
  • A sprig curry leaves
  • 1/4 tsp asafoetida powder
  • 3 to 4 dried red chillies broken in half
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated coconut


  • Neatly trim off the cut end of the scapes if necessary and then chop them small. Heat the coconut oil and add the mustard seeds. When they start popping, add the lentils and stir till they turn golden. Add the curry leaves, asafoetida powder and the broken chillies and stir a couple of times.
  • Now add the chopped scapes and sauté over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Add the turmeric powder, salt and about a quarter cup of water. Bring to a boil, and then turn down the heat.
  • Cover and let it cook until all the water is absorbed, and the scapes are cooked. You can cook them till soft or till they still retain a “barely there” crunch according to your preference. Take the pan off the heat and just before serving mix in the coconut. Serve warm on the side with a meal of rice and Sambar.