Sunday, April 26, 2015

Baby Potato Podi Curry

Yet again a Potato Post. Potatoes are a favorite at home and loved by all. But somehow I always keep away from cooking them too ofter. I usually end up making a potato curry only as a last resort, that is when I have no other vegetable. But, now, I have to give in to the demands of H and kids and end up preparing potatoes more often and that's the reason for a flooding of potatoe recipes on the blog. :) 
 This preparation with freshly ground spices is  very flavorful, but is on the spicier side. So adjust the chillies and black pepper according to your taste buds. It goes very well with Sambar rice or with just Rasam and rice. I served it along with Sambar Rice.

What you'll need

  1. Baby Potatoes - 3/4 Kg
  2. Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp
  3. Asafoetida - a generous pinch
  4. Salt to taste

To Roast and Grind

  1. Channa Dal/Kadala Paruppu - 2 tbsp
  2. Coriander Seeds - 1.5 tbsp
  3. Dried Red Chillies - 3 to 4 (Increase or decrease according to your taste and spiciness of the chillies)
  4. Black Pepper - 1/2 tsp
  5. Coconut - 1 tbsp

For Tempering

  1. Oil - 2 tbsp
  2. Mustard Seeds - 1/2 tsp
  3. Urad Dal - 1 tsp
  4. Curry Leaves - few


  1. Wash and pressure cook the baby potatoes. Halve them if they are very big. Make sure not to over cook them.
  2. In the meanwhile, heat a small frying pan, dry roast all the ingredients mentioned under "to roast and grind". Take care not to burn the ingredients. You can roast each item separately. Cool and grind along with some salt into a powder.
  3. Once the potatoes have cooled, remove the skin and set aside.
  4. Heat a non stick kadai with oil, temper with mustard seeds, once they start spluttering, add the urad dal and fry till they turn golden. Add the curry leaves and the asafoetida powder.
  5. Also add the potatoes, turmeric powder, and salt to taste. Remember we added salt in the spice powder. So add accordingly.
  6. Fry this for few minutes tossing them once in a while. Fry till the potatoes start turning golden brown.
  7. Now add the the spice powder and saute for a minute. 

Remove from heat and serve hot with Sambar and white rice. 


  1. You can use big potatoes too. pressure cook and cut them into smaller pieces.
  2. Take care not to burn the spices, while roasting, else you will end up having a bitter taste.
  3. Also since we are adding salt in the spice powder, take care while adding salt to the potatoes.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Chakka Pradhaman - Vishu Sadya

I am really happy to be sharing my 400th post with you all. My  blogging journey so far has been a very memorable one. It has been almost 4 years now since I started blogging. It wouldn't have been possible without all you wonderful readers, friends and family. So a big Thank you to one and all. A special thanks to the readers who take the time to leave their valuble feedback here. But for the sweet and encouraging words from you readers, I couldn't have come this far.

Now to today's recipe, Chakka Pradhaman is a very delicious and easy payasam that is usually prepared for Vishu Sadhya as Chakka/Jackfruit are in season during this time. You can prepare the Pradhaman using fresh fruit or prepare it with Chakka Varatti or Jackfruit Preserve. Here, I am sharing the recipe of Chakka Pradhaman using Chakka Varatti.

What you'll need
Serves 3 - 4
  1. Chakka Varatti - 1 cup, tightly packed
  2. Jaggery - 1/4 cup, powdered
  3. Thin Coconut Milk - 1.5 cup* (See Notes)
  4. Thick Coconut Milk - 1/2 cup*
  5. Dry Ginger Powder - 1/2 tsp
  6. Coconut - 2 tbsp, cut into small pieces
  7. Ghee - 1 tbsp
  1. Dissolve the jaggery in 1/2 cup of water and strain for impurities.
  2. Bring this jaggery syrup to a boil. Let it boil for 3 to 4 minutes on medium flame.
  3. Add the chakka varatti to this jaggery syrup and let mix it well, until the varatti dissolves and mixes well with the syrup. 
  4. Now add the thin coconut milk and let everything boil for 6 to 7 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat and add the thick coconut milk. Mix well. 
  6. Add the dry ginger powder and mix.
  7. Heat a small frying pan with ghee and fry the coconut pieces till they turn brown.
  8. Add this to the pradhaman.
Delicious Chakka Pradhaman is ready.
Serve warm.

  1. I used readymade canned coconut milk. For the thin coconut milk, I took 1/2 cup of the readymade milk and added 1 cup of water to it, that made 1.5 cup of thin coconut milk.
  2. If you are using refrigerated chakka varatti, keep it outside for 2 to 3 hours before preparing the pradhaman. 
  3. Also, if using store bought varatti, check for fibres from the fruit in the varatti. If you feel that the varatti has fibres, you can add the varatti to the thin coconut milk and squeeze the varatti with your hands and remove the fibres. Then add this varatti and coconut milk mixture to the boiling jaggery syrup.
  4. Add and adjust the quantity of jaggery depending on the sweetness of the varatti.
  5. You can also fry cashewnuts and raisins along with coconut pieces if you like.
  6. Cardamom is usually not added to this Pradhaman as it will overpower the flavor of jackfruit.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Puli Inji

Puli Inji is tangy spicy condiment in which the main ingredients are ginger, green chillies and tamarind. It is one of the main items served in a sadhya along with the pickles. It can be stored for 20 days when refrigerated and handled with care. 

Puli inji is one of my favorite items on the sadhya menu. Though it is a delicacy prepared during a feast, but really, you don't need any special occasion to prepare this. Puli Inji pairs beautifully with molagootal and curd rice. 

The Puli Inji recipe, differs from region to region and family to family. This is the way both my mother and MIL prepare. Do try and let me know. Check out my Sadhya Recipes page for more recipes.

What you'll need
Makes one small cup
  1. Ginger – ¼ cup, very finely chopped
  2. Green Chillies – 8 to 10
  3. Tamarind – a lemon sized ball
  4. Jaggery – same amount as tamarind
  5. Turmeric Powder – ¼ tsp
  6. Salt to taste
  7. Gingely Oil/Nalla Ennai – 3 tbsp
  8. Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
  9. Asafoetida – a generous pinch
  10. Curry Leaves – few torn

  1. Soak the tamarind in a cup of hot water for 15 to 20 minutes. Squeeze and extract the juice and keep aside.
  2. Wash and peel the ginger, chop it very finely. Also finely chop the green chillies.
  3. Heat a heavy bottomed kadai with oil, temper with mustard seeds, once it crackles, add the curry leaves.
  4. Now add the chopped ginger, and green chillies, and fry it on medium flame. Keep stirring.
  5. Fry till the ginger turns golden brown. Take care not to burn the ginger else the whole taste will change.
  6. Now add the tamarind juice, turmeric powder, asafetida powder, and salt to taste.
  7. Let this boil for 3 to 4 minutes on medium flame. Now add the jaggery and allow to boil till the oil starts floating on top and the consistency becomes thick and saucy.
  8. Remove from heat and let it cool. Serve as an accompaniment with curd rice.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Paruppu Urundai Kuzhambu

Paruppu Urundai Kuzhambu or Uruandai kuzhambu is a tangy tamarind based gravy with lentil balls. This is one of my favorite kuzhambus, though it gets made only very rarely. (that is when I have no stock of vegetables). I have seen so many recipes for this kuzhambu, some with onions, some with ground coconut and even some with coconut milk. The recipe I am sharing today is my mother’s recipe. It is a no onion no garlic recipe and does not make use of coconut also. But still it comes out very delicious.

Some steam the urundais/balls in idly plates and then add them to the kuzhambu at the end, but somehow I have got used to adding the balls directly into the kuzhambu. Follow the method given below and I am sure you will get the perfect kuzhambu. I made it after a long time on this weekend and we all enjoyed it.

What you’ll need
Serves – 2 to 3
Makes around 8 small urundais
For the Paruppu Urundai
  1. Tuar Dal – 2/3 cup
  2. Dried Red Chillies – 2 or 3
  3. Asafoetida – a generous pinch
  4. Curry Leaves few
  5. Rice flour – 2 tsp

For the Kuzhambu
  1. Tamarind – a big gooseberry sized ball
  2. Sambar Powder – 1.5 tbsp
  3. Turmeric Powder – ¼ tsp
  4. Jaggery – 1 tsp (optional)
  5. Salt to taste
  6. Coriander Leaves - few for garnishing

For Tempering
  1. Gingely oil/Nalla Ennai – 1.5 tbsp
  2. Mustard Seeds – ½ tsp
  3. Jeera – ½ tsp
  4. Fenugreek Seeds – ¼ tsp
  5. Channa Dal – 1 tsp
  6. Curry Leaves – few

  1. Soak the tuar dal and red chillies in water for 1 hour. Drain the water completely and grind coarsely along with salt, asafetida and few curry leaves. Do not add water while grinding.
  2. Soak the tamarind in a cup of hot water for 10 to 15 minutes. Squeeze and take out the extract. Keep aside.
  3. Heat a Kadai or heavy bottomed vessel with oil, temper with mustard, jeera, channa dal, methi seeds and fry till dal turn golden.
  4. Add curry leaves, lower the flame and add the sambar powder, fry it for about 30 secs. Take care not to burn it.
  5. Now add the tamarind extract, along with 2 cups of water, turmeric powder, salt, asafetida and jaggery.
  6. Let this come to a boil, and let it boil for 3 to 4 minutes.
  7. In the meanwhile, make small balls from the ground dal paste, dredge it in riceflour and carefully add the balls one by one into the boiling kuzhambu. Reduce the heat to low while adding the balls.
  8. After you add the balls, don’t stir the kuzhambu. Once the balls are cooked, they will float on the kuzhambu.
  9. Garnish with coriander leaves and remove from flame. Keep covered until serving. Tastes best after a couple of hours.

That’s it, delicious urundai kuzhambu is ready. Serve with hot rice and a poriyal of your choice.

  1. The tamarind water should be dilute, that is around 3 cups or little more, cos after adding the balls, the kuzhambu will become thicker.
  2. Don’t add any water while grinding the dals.
  3. Remember to lower the flame before adding the balls, add them gently one by one.
  4. Don’t stir the kuzhambu after adding the balls, until they float up.
  5. You can sauté a sliced onion after tempering and then add the tamarind extract.
  6. You could also add some fennel seeds/sompu in the dal mixture while grinding. It gives a good flavor.

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