Keralans like their food...no serioulsy they love it. Since arriving the food hasn't stopped coming - huge breakfasts of fruit, bread and sometimes a few curry like dishes, large fried donut like savoury snacks for mid morning, lunches with vats of rice, at least 3 different curries, fish, chicken and chapati; another donut snack in the afternoon and the same as lunch for dinner. All washed down with chaia of course! When I asked the teachers what the students ambitions were, they said their next meal - not exactly true but it gives you the idea!
The Keralan staples are coconut, green chillies, rice and tapioca (prepared like boiled potato), with most meals containing all four. Traditionally the rice is placed in the centre of the plate (or banana leaf) and portions of the variety of curries, spiced vegetables and mixture of whey and salad are served around the rice. My favourite so far is a coconut flavoured rice pancake with aubergine, vege curry and deep fried little fish (like sprats) on the side.
Our lovely cook, Ulma Culsa (almost definitly spelt wrong), cooks the most delicious, fresh tasting food and the lightest chapati in Kerala....we've just had to teach her the word small!