Squid Dry Roast | Kanava Thoran Recipe | Koonthal Thoran Kerala Style | Forks N Knives

Squid Dry Roast | Kanava Thoran Recipe | Koonthal Thoran Kerala Style

Wednesday, August 26, 2015
That almost all Keralites are sea food lovers is more than an established fact with very strong proven results. We are no exception. I can have them with every meal. Last Saturday, i made some Squid Dry Roast Kerala Style also known as Kananva / Koonthal Thoran in Malayalam. Recipe is my Mom's and almost all Malayalees i know prepare it this way. As always, we went to the nearest Korean Super Market and got them fresh. 

Don't be intimidated by the cleaning process. It's so easy that it gets over much more faster than cleaning a fish and is also not smelly at all. The very first time i cooked them was after marriage, when i was alone at my in-laws place. My FIL likes them a lot, but MIL doesn't knew how to cook them. There is Indian Coffee House everywhere in North Kerala and this is where he eats them some times. As always, i called up my Mom, asked her the directions to clean them and cook and Tadaa....It was ready. I made them in old fashioned gas top, the Chulha. Chulha is the setp up where you cook by burning wood logs and placing your vessel on top of bricks or mud stones for support. They yield the tastiest recipes ever.

Let's get cooking some kerala koonthal roast!!

Start by cleaning the squid. If you do not know how to clean them, here is a website i found online which has explained it well. Detailed recipe is at the bottom of the page with exact measurements.

Cook the squid with all powders and curry leaves.

Heat oil and add mustard seeds,once they crackle add fenugreek seeds , crushed ginger garlic green chilies and shallots.

Add the spice powders. Cook on low flame till raw smell subsides.

Add the coconut.

Add the half cooked squid and cambodge.

Garnish with curry leaves. Serve hot with rice.


Squid - 6 to 8
Curry Leaves - 2 sprig
Coconut Oil- 2 tbsp
Shallots- 8
Cambodge/ Kodam Pulli/ Kokkam - 2 pieces
Ginger Garlic Crushed- 2 tbsp
Green Chilies-2
Mustard Seeds- 1 tsp
Fenugreek Seeds- 1/2 tsp
Red Chili Powder- 1.5 tbsp
Turmeric powder- 1 tbsp
Coriander Powder- 2.5 tbsp
Garam Masala Powder - 1 tsp
Grated Coconut- 1 cup
Water as needed
Salt as needed


1. Clean squid and cut into small rings.

2. In a pan cook together squid, some turmeric powder, chili powder , pinch of salt , a sprig of curry leaf and around 1/4th cup of water for 7-8 minutes on a medium flame.

3. In another pan, add oil, when it heats up, add mustard seeds, allow them to crackle, add fenugreek seeds, curry leaves, shallots, crushed ginger garlic and green chili. Saute till the raw smell goes for around 4-5 minutes.

4. Soak the cambodge in warm water.

5. Now add all the remaining powders with salt and saute on a low flame, so as to not burn them.

6. Add 3/4th of the coconut now and roast for few minutes till it gets coated well in spice powders.

7. Now add half cooked squid and soaked cambodge. Pour little water, close the lid and cook on medium flame for 8-10 minutes.

8. Garnish with the remaining coconut and curry leaves.

Kerala Style Kanava Thoran is ready!!!


Squid turns very rubbery if over cooked, so be careful not to over cook it. For authentic flavor cook in earthen pots and use coconut oil. You can add more water if you wish to make this a curry and not dry roast.

My earthen pot has a small crack and thus leaks. So i use them only for photographing at the end.

Hope you all will try this and let me know.

Till we meet again,



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