A Simple Seasoned Kuzhambu

This is a very simple dish, you can whip it up in no time from spices and tamarind.

Seasoned Kuzhambu

Kuzhambu dishes are those South Indian spicy and tangy gravies that can be eaten over rice. Distinctively South Indian, they form an important part of the Tamil cuisine. This Kuzhambu is a very simple one, you can whip it up in no time. No grinding, no vegetable chopping and cooking, just spices and tamarind. It is perfect for the end of the week when you are running out of vegetables yet want a tasty home cooked meal.

Add some vatral to any leftover kuzhambu for the next day.

Try some other Kuzhambu recipes – Eggplant Kuzhambu, Lentil Balls in a Spicy Gravy, Green Chilli Kuzhambu, and Yoghurt Kuzhambu. Also try Green Chilli Kuzhambu, Fenugreek Kuzhambu, and Masala Kuzhambu with Gram Flour Vadai.

You can find recipes for the other Kuzhambus here. If you are looking for Sambar Recipes, they are here. (The list includes Kuzhambu Recipes.) Or explore our Indian dishes and our Indian Essentials. Other Late Winter recipes can be found here.

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A Simple Seasoned Kuzhambu

Source : interpreted from Cook and See Part 1, by S. Meenakshi Ammal
Cuisine: South Indian, Tamil
Prep time: about 3 mins
Cooking time: 20 mins
Serves: 2 – 3 people depending how you are using it. It makes 2 cups.

Tamarind – enough to make 2.5 cups juice. Use concentrate or traditional tamarind
4 tspn ghee or Indian Sesame Oil (much lighter than Chinese Sesame Oil)
3/4 tspn black mustard seeds
1/4 tspn fenugreek seeds
1 tspn  red gram dal (toor dal)
pinch asafoetida
6 – 10 dried red chillies, the end pinched
curry leaves
1.5 tspn salt
1 tspn rice flour

Prepare 2.5 cups tamarind juice.

Heat the ghee or sesame oil in a pot on the stove. Add the mustard seeds and allow them to pop, adding the fenugreek seeds, pinched red chillies, red gram dal and asafoetida. When the red gram dal is golden add the curry leaves. After a few moments add the tamarind juice and the salt to the spices.

Boil well and reduce to 2 cups. Then thicken with the rice flour mixed with a little cold water — stir it into the kuzhambu and stir continually until it thickens. Bring back to the boil and remove from the heat.

Serve with rice, maybe a vegetable curry or a simple green salad and some pappad. And some Indian pickles if they are to your taste.

Seasoned Kuzhambu





3 thoughts on “A Simple Seasoned Kuzhambu”

  1. Dear Ganga, this idea sounds so good. I think I will make it for supper this evening, or perhaps lunch, if I simply don’t want to wait that long. I really enjoy the snap and bright flavors of Tamil cooking, so this is another wonderful idea I can try … thank you!
    I am often looking for simple, easy-to-whip-up delicious vegetarian meals to make, so that my husband can learn how to make them too, and we can share the cooking with more ease in our household. Last winter I made a lot of dosa, and this summer we have been experimenting with besan cheela, both of which are so tasty and satisfying with just a small amount. Learning that I can actually get by quite well on way less food than I was ever accustomed to eating is a revelation, now that I more clearly understand in my body when my stomach is not quite full, and that habitual over-eating to satisfy taste is uncomfortable and not great for my health in the long run.
    I am happy to read of your adventures with food and yoga practice!

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