Poritha Koottu with Sambar Powder

Kootu (Koottu) is a type of Kuzhambu, and contains a combination of vegetable combined with Mung Dal and freshly ground mild spices. Varieties of Kootu include Poritha Kootu and Kothsu (Gothsu).

Sometimes Kootu is called a Lentil Vegetable Stew. It certainly is thicker than Poritha Kuzhambu, with more vegetables. It is generally eaten with rice, without any need for an accompanying vegetable dish. You could say that Poritha Kuzhambu and Poritha Kootu are very similar, except that Poritha Kootu is made with Mung Dal rather than Toor Dal, has more vegetables and is much thicker than Kuzhambu.

This Kootu is slightly unusual. It uses a little Sambar Powder which is rarely used in Kootu. And although some Kootu recipes contain tamarind, this one does not.

Cumin is considered the defining spice for Kootu. Sometimes pepper is used. Many kootus are spiced with a coconut, cumin and green chillies paste but this recipe, from Meenakshi Ammal, varies that by using red chillies.

The dish is not spicy – very little spice is used. It celebrates the taste and textures of the dal and the vegetables. You will enjoy it. You can purchase your Sambar Powder at an Indian grocery, or better still, make your own.

As usual, Meenakshi Ammal’s recipe takes some unpicking as it does contradict itself. It always takes a bit of a detective work to unravel the recipes in Vol 1 of her 4 volume set of Cook and See.

Are you after similar recipes? Try Poritha Kootu without Tamarind, Brinjal Chidambaram Kothsu, and Pitlai.

Are you after Kuzhamu recipes? Try Moar Kuzhambu (with yoghurt), Fenugreek Kuzhambu, and Paruppu Urundai Kuzhambu (Lentil Balls in Spicy Gravy).

Or perhaps you prefer Mung Dal recipes. We recommend Mung Dal with Cumin and Spinach, Gentle Mung Soup, and Mung Soup with Amaranth Greens.

Or browse all of our Kootu, our Sambar and Kuzhambu recipes, and all of our Mung recipes. Our Indian Dishes are all here and our Indian Essentials here. Or simply explore our Early Autumn dishes.

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Simple Poritha Kuzhambu | Poritha Kuzhambu with Chillies and Cumin | A South Indian Lentil Based Gravy with Vegetable

The second of three methods suggested by Meenakshi Ammal. A beautiful, flowing-textured dal-based dish perfect over rice.

There are three main methods for making Poritha (Poricha) Kuzhambu. The first uses sambar powder, and this recipe, the second method, uses a paste of chillies, cumin seed and coconut. The third method uses chillies and urad dal ground to a paste.

Poritha Kuzhambu (or Poricha Kuzhambu) is a style of kuzhambu that usually includes coconut in its ground spice mix – this is the most defining characteristic of a Poritha Kuzhambu. This recipe is lentil based which can be made with either Toor Dal as we do here, or Green Gram Dal (Mung Dal). Although some Poritha Kuzhambu recipes can contain tamarind, this one does not.

This dish is not spicy, with very little spice added – just chillies and cumin. It celebrates the taste and textures of the dal and the vegetable.

Sometimes Poritha Kuzhambu is called a Lentil Vegetable Stew. That is not entirely accurate. There is no real equivalent in our cuisine – perhaps it can be described as a Lentil Based Gravy with a Vegetable, to eat over rice. It flavours the rice and the rice compliments the kuzhambu. I love kuzhambu so much, I will also eat a small bowl of it like a soup.

Are you looking for other Poritha Kuzhambu recipes? Try Brinjal Chidambaram Kothsu, Poritha Kuzhambu with Amaranth, and Pitlai.

Feel free to browse all of our Poritha Kuzhambu recipes, our Kuzhambu recipes, and our Indian recipes. Drumstick recipes are here. You may also like to browse our easy Early Winter recipes.

Continue reading “Simple Poritha Kuzhambu | Poritha Kuzhambu with Chillies and Cumin | A South Indian Lentil Based Gravy with Vegetable”

Simple Poritha Kuzhambu | A South Indian Lentil Based Gravy with Vegetable for Over Rice

A beautiful, flowing-textured dal-based dish perfect over rice.

Poritha kuzhambu  or Poricha kuzhambu is a style of kuzhambu that often includes coconut in its ground spice mix – this is the most defining characteristic of a Poritha Kuzhambu. This recipe is lentil based which can be made with either Toor Dal as we do here, or Green Gram Dal (Mung Dal). Although some Poritha Kuzhambu recipes can contain tamarind, this one does not.

This dish is not spicy, with very little spice added. It celebrates the taste and textures of the dal and the vegetable. You will enjoy it. It uses a per-prepared Sambar Powder, which you can purchase at an Indian grocery, or make your own.

Sometimes Poritha Kuzhambu is called a Lentil Vegetable Stew. That is not entirely accurate. There is no real equivalent in our cuisine – perhaps it can be described as a Lentil Based Gravy with a Vegetable, to eat over rice. It flavours the rice and the rice compliments the kuzhambu. I love kuzhambu so much, I will also eat a small bowl of it like a soup.

Are you looking for other similar recipes? Try Poritha Kuzhambu with Tamarind and Amaranth, Poritha Kootu with Sambar Powder, Pitlai, Poritha Kuzhambu with Chilli and Cumin,  and Chidambaram Brinjal Kothsu.

Or Drumstick recipes? Try Sampangi Pitlai, Race Kuzhambu and Drumstick Kadhi.

Feel free to browse all of our Poritha Kuzhambu recipes, all of our Kuzhambu recipes, and our Indian recipes. Drumstick recipes are here. You may also like to browse our easy Early Winter recipes.

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Pulse Ball Moar Kuzhambu | Buttermilk & Coconut Gravy with Ground Lentil Balls | Yoghurt Curry with Lentil Dumplings

Pulse balls, or lentil dumplings, are added to the moar kuzhambu (spicy yoghurt gravy) to make a delicious South Indian dish.

Moar (or Mor, More or Moru) Kuzhambu is commonly prepared in South India and is extremely easy to make, taking almost no time at all. This one includes the lentil dumplings and so takes a little longer. The base for this dish with the lentil dumplings is Moar Kuzhambu, but rather than add vegetables or vatral, balls of ground lentils and spices are made (pulse balls) and added to the base.

S. Meenakshi Ammal’s Cook and See set of books has 2 Moar Kuzhambu (Buttermilk/Yoghurt spicy gravy) with Lentil Dumplings made from ground lentils.

This Pulse Ball Moar Kuzhambu differs from the first version of this dish. The ground lentil balls are simpler and cooked in the buttermilk and coconut gravy rather than steamed. It is very delicious.

You might also like to try Avial – Veggies in a Yoghurt and Coconut Sauce, Yoghurt Curry with Drumstick Vegetables, Moar Sambar, or a host of different lassi drinks.

You can find other Kuzhambu recipes here. If you would like to browse them, all of our Indian recipes are here. Or take some time to explore our Late Autumn recipes.

Continue reading “Pulse Ball Moar Kuzhambu | Buttermilk & Coconut Gravy with Ground Lentil Balls | Yoghurt Curry with Lentil Dumplings”

Pulse Ball Moar Kuzhambu | Buttermilk Gravy with Ground Lentil Balls | Yoghurt Curry with Lentil Dumplings

Pulse balls, or lentil dumplings, are added to the moar kuzhambu (spicy yoghurt gravy) to make a delicious South Indian dish.

Moar (or Mor or Moru) Kuzhambu is commonly prepared in South India and is extremely easy to make, taking almost no time at all to cook. This one includes the lentil dumplings and so takes a little longer. The base for this dish with the lentil dumplings is Moar Kuzhambu, but rather than add vegetables or vatral, balls of ground lentils and spices are made (pulse balls) and added to the base.

S. Meenakshi Ammal’s Cook and See set of books has 2 Moar Kuzhambu (Buttermilk/Yoghurt spicy gravy) with Lentil Dumplings made from ground lentils.

This Pulse Ball Moar Kuzhambu differs from the second version of this dish. The ground lentil balls are a little different, and steamed rather than cooked in the buttermilk and coconut gravy.

Are you looking for other Yoghurt recipes? Apart from the other Moar Kuzhambu with Lentil Dumplings, try Moar Kuzhambu, Moar SambarAvail – Veggies in a Yoghurt and Coconut Sauce, and Mushroom Curry with Yoghurt Sauce.

Or try other Kuzhambu recipes: Green Chilli Kuzhambu, Masala Kuzhambu with Gram Flour Vadai, and Lentil Balls in a Spicy Kuzhambu Gravy.

You might also like to try a host of different lassi drinks.

You can find all of our Kuzhambu recipes here, and all of our Indian recipes here. Or explore our collection of Mid Autumn dishes.

Continue reading “Pulse Ball Moar Kuzhambu | Buttermilk Gravy with Ground Lentil Balls | Yoghurt Curry with Lentil Dumplings”

Moar Kuzhambu | Yoghurt Gravy with Vegetables or Vatral

Beaten yoghurt (Indian Buttermilk) Thin Curry with Vegetables. Both warming (from the spices) and cooling (from the beaten yoghurt) it is a dish for any time of the year.

Moar Kuzhambu is an Indian dish made with churned yoghurt. It can include vegetables, dried pea vatral, or bondas. Deliciously spicy, it is wonderfully cooling at the same time.

Moar (or Mor or Moru) Kuzhambu is commonly prepared in South India and is extremely easy to make, taking almost no time at all to cook. It can be served with hot rice and a vegetable stir fry. Generally green or cluster bean paruppu usili is a wonderful accompaniment, as is a spinach dish such as spinach masiyal or spinach poriyal.

There are also two dishes that derive from this one – both add dumplings made of ground lentils, and you might like to try them also:

Are you looking for other Yoghurt recipes? Try Moar SambarSweet and Sour Mango Curry in Yoghurt Sauce, and Simple Yoghurt Curry.

Or try other Kuzhambu recipes: Grated Coconut Masala Kuzhambu, Simple, Seasoned Kuzhambu, and Kottu Kuzhambu.

You might also like to try a host of different Lassi drinks.

You can find all of our Kuzhambu recipes here, and all of our Indian recipes here. Or explore our collection of Mid Autumn dishes.

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Green Chilli Kuzhambu | Pacha Milagai | S. Meenakshi Ammal

This is one of Meenakshi Ammal’s hotest dishes.

The Kitchen is a-hum with activity this week. But first things first, a perspiration generating, hot hot dish of green chillies.

Some kuzhambu dishes are like gravies, perfect to eat ladled over rice. This one is a perfect for rice, and very hot, lunch.

You might also like How to Make Chilli Paste, Coriander and Chilli Lassi, or Tomato and Chilli Jam. Browse all of our Chilli recipes here and here. Or explore our Kuzhambu or Sambar recipes.

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Fenugreek Kuzhambu | Jaffna, Sri Lanka Style

Fenugreek – loved by some and not by others – is the basis for this great Lunch time Kuzhambu

Kuzhambu is such an interesting dish, difficult to describe accurately. Sometimes looking like soup, it is more accurately a flavoured gravy which is mostly eaten with or over rice. There are similarities to sambar, but it differs.

I was surprised to find this recipe in my pile of recipes from 2005. It is a Kuzhambu with an onion base flavoured with fenugreek. Fenugreek isn’t to everyone’s taste it – has a bitterness about it, so be careful not to add too much to a dish.. It is also so very good for you too.

You might also like to try Simple Kuzhambu, Green Chilli Kuzhambu, or Vatral Kuzhambu with Onion Vadagam. Browse all of the Kuzhambu here. You might like to explore Sambar recipes too.

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Masala Kuzhambu with Gram Flour Vadai | S. Meenakshi Ammal

A delicious kuzhambu with gram flour dumplings / vadai

Some time ago I had a revelation about Indian food. It is this – European food, and those cuisines that derived from Europe, focus on the vegetables (or meat if you are non veg) as the basis of a dish, and on how to incorporate flavours into the base through the use of herbs, some few spices, browning of ingredients, stocks, sauces etc.

However Indian food is the other way around – the basis of a dish is the spice mix, and the vegetables are the carrier of the spices and add texture. Flavours are deepened through the roasting of spices, the use of oil to enhance and prolong the spice flavours, even spices to thicken liquid components of a dish. When you begin to think this way about Indian food your cooking style will change and many flavours will open up for you.

This dish from Cook and See Part 1 by Meenakshi Ammal typifies this, with 4 different spice combinations added to the dish to create a layered flavour profile. The “sauce” or “gravy” for this dish is just water, tamarind and spices. The texture is created through little balls of besan/gram flour, deep fried into vadai which are dumpling-like.

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Lentil Balls in a Spicy Gravy | Paruppu Urundai Kuzhambu | South Indian

Wonderful dumplings in spicy gravy

Meenakshi Ammal, my favourite Indian cookbook author, in her chapter on Vatral Kuzhambu, includes wonderful gram flour “dumplings”, like this recipe for Kuzhambu: Masala Kuzhambu with Gram Flour Vadai.

By contrast this recipe, Paruppu Urundai Kuzhambu, uses dal dumplings, or pulse balls made with toor dal. These give the kuzhambu a sambar like feel. The balls are made from soaked and ground toor dal which is then sauteed to par-cook and remove additional moisture before being poached in the Kuzhambu spicy broth.

The balls can be used in a Vatral Kuzhambu base, a rasam base or a moru kuzhambu base.

You might like to try other Kuzhambu recipes here and here, and our Sambar recipes here and here. Explore our Indian recipes here and here. Find inspiration in our Spring recipes here and here.

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Tomato/Thakkali Kurma, Korma or Kuzhambu | Using Roasted Tomatoes

What is in a name? You say kurma and someone else says korma, you say kuzhambu and someone says gravy or soup or curry. This dish is popular and even with the precision of the naming of dishes in India, I have found versions of this recipe under several different names.

Never mind, it is dee-licious. We add a twist by using roasted tomatoes.

You might like to browse all of our Kuzhambu recipes here and here. And our Tomato recipes here and here.  We have a lot of Indian recipes here and here. Be inspired by our Spring recipes here and here.

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Grated Coconut Masala Kuzhambu | Thenga Aracha Kuzhambu

A Kuzhambu with Coconut.

Meenakshi Ammal’s Cook and See Part 1 has a Coconut Masala Kuzhambu recipe. Kuzhambu’s are soupy or gravy based dishes which are made without lentils. There isn’t any English equivalent, so any description is not going to be accurate. The are often said to be gravy-like, designed to eat over rice with some vegetable accompaniments.

See this post, Kuzhambu vs Sambar – what is the difference? It will help explain this type of dish which has no real equivalent in Western/English style cooking. Kuzhambus are meant to be eaten with rice, and perhaps a vegetable dish, some chutney and pickles.

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

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Narathankai Kuzhambu | Orange, Lemon or Lime Peel Kuzhambu

Top to Tail Vegetarian eating (perhaps it is Tip to Leaf) is all the vogue at my place.

Kuzhambu is a South Indian dish with infinite varieties. They are gravy-like dishes intended to eat over rice, and form an important part of daily meals in Tamil Nadu. Read more about Kuzhambu dishes here.

Orange Kuzhambu – made from the peel only – can also be made with lime or lemon peel (even Meyer lemons). Even mandarin peel can be used.

You can see the genesis of this dish in making food stretch, in the “top to tail” eating, vegetarian style, of people for whom sustenance and deliciousness was the requirement, whatever food was at hand. Perhaps it is “root to leaf” eating.

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 here and here. Other Winter recipes can be found here and here.

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A Simple Seasoned Kuzhambu

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

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 – Lentil Balls in a Spicy Gravy, Green Chilli Kuzhambu, or Yoghurt Kuzhambu.

You can find recipes for the other Kuzhambus here, including Green Chilli Kuzhambu, Fenugreek Kuzhambu, and Masala Kuzhambu with Gram Flour Vadai. If you are looking for Sambar Recipes, they are here. (The list includes Kuzhambu Recipes.) Or explore our Indian dishes here and here. Other Winter recipes can be found here and here.

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Race Kuzhambu | Anjara Petti Kuzhambu | A Traditional South Indian Gravy

A tangy tamarind based kuzhambu with okra, drumsticks or eggplant.

No one really knows how Race Kuzhambu got its name, but we have a theory that it is a mis-spelling of rice. This recipe uses a little rice to aid in the thickening of the kuzhambu gravy.

A Kuzhambu is a gravy like dish, sometimes thin, sometimes thicker, intended to be eaten over rice. Read more about Kuzhambu here.

It is also called Anjara petti kozhambu, meaning Spice Box Kuzhambu. In this dish, a range of ingredients in the home spice box are used to make the masala which is then cooked in tamarind liquid.

Browse our Kuzhambu recipes here, including Green Chilli Kuzhambu, Fenugreek Kuzhambu, and Masala Kuzhambu with Gram Flour Vadai. If you are looking for Sambar Recipes, they are here. Or explore our Indian dishes here and here. Be inspired by our Winter recipes here and here.

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