How we love drumsticks, those funny long thin pod-like vegetables that grow on spindly trees in South India. Whenever we see them in the shops we bring them home to freeze for later dishes. Rasam, Sambar and Kuzhambu are three of our favourite ways to use them.
Today’s recipe with drumsticks is a kuzhambu that includes fenugreek. Actually the recipe can be made without any vegetables (we have a version here), but we like the addition of drumsticks or eggplant. You can also use okra, small onions or shallots, or Indian broad beans.
Similar recipes include Vendhaya Kuzhambu, Drumstick Sambar with Curry Leaves, and Pitlai.
Browse all of our Drumstick recipes and all of our Kuzhambu dishes. All of our Indian recipes are here, and the Indian Essentials Series is here. Or explore our Early Summer dishes.
Continue reading “Murungakkai Vendhaya | Drumstick and Fenugreek Kuzhambu”
This dish gets its name from the fact that it is prepared with 7 vegetables. It is a South Indian dish, actually a Tamil dish, which is often prepared on Thiruvathirai Day as a side dish for Thiruvadhira Kali (a sweet mung dal and rice dish made on this festival day). Although its name means seven vegetables, often nine, eleven, or even more are used! It is a blend of sweet, salty, tangy and spicy flavours that meld so well together, and is a perfect clean-out-the-fridge dish.
It is a dish that is also made on Thai Pongal, where it is called Pongal Kootu and as an accompaniment to Sakkarai Pongal. For this dish it is made thinner than for Thiruvathirai.
But you can also make this dish at any time – don’t keep it only for a festival dish. The recipe is one of Meenakshi Ammal’s from her cook books Cook and See. One of our very special projects in the kitchen is to cook through these books, as they are very traditional Tamil recipes.You can find all of Ammal’s dishes that we have made here. Most of them are from Vol 1 so far.
I love this dish cooked just with potatoes. It is divine. Today I made it with Colacasia, Chenai Yam, Cluster Beans, Pumpkin, Potato, Ridged Gourd, and Drumstick. Delicious!
Similar dishes include Drumstick and Fenugreek Kuzhambu, Poritha Kootu, Poritha Kootu with Simple Spices, and Moringa Leaf Dal.
Browse all of our recipes for Thai Pongal. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Mid Autumn dishes.
We use Australian measurements: 1 tspn = 5ml; 1 Tblspn = 20ml; 1 cup = 250ml.
Continue reading “Ezhukari Kuzhambu / Kootu | Seven Vegetables Kuzhambu | Pongal Kootu”
Amaranth is loved across India (and features strongly in a range of Asian cuisines). All parts are used – the seeds are well known outside India, and at the moment they are fashionable and quite popular. But in India the leaves are also used, and the young, tender stems as well.
Amaranth leaves are available in Asian shops so keep an eye out for them. There are different varieties – some are green, but others often contain a tinge of red. Beautiful indeed.
Meenakshi Ammal in her cookbooks Cook and See mentions Amaranth leaves and stems a lot in her sections on sambars and kuzhambu recipes. This recipe she calls (in English) Greens Soup with Tamarind and it sits in the chapter of Poritha Kuzhambu. It is an unusual name given that soups are not traditionally part of the Tamil cuisine (although they are popular more recently). I wonder if the name in Tamil is quite different. However, she certainly got the colour correct!
This recipe is a cousin to this one of the same name. While that one uses Pitlay spices but not a tadka, this recipe uses sambar powder with a tadka. Both are pretty special and you should try them both. This one is closer to this Poritha Koottu with Tamarind.
Similar recipes include Amaranth Leaf Masiyal, Poritha Kuzhambu dishes and Poritha Kootu recipes. Try Plain Masiyal of Amaranth Leaves, Moar Kuzhambu, Lentil Balls in a Spicy Gravy, and Vatral Kuzhambu.
Some popular Indian Soups include Indian Potato and Tomato Soup, South Indian Cauliflower Soup, Two Gentle Mung Dal Soups, and A Light, Summery Tomato Soup.
But why not browse all of our Kuzhambu recipes, and all Indian Soups? Or explore our Amaranth dishes, and our complete Indian Recipe Collection. Or take some time to check out our easy Early Autumn dishes.
Continue reading “South Indian Amaranth Leaves Soup with Tamarind”
It is early Spring and I’ve pruned the curry leaf tree back, so to use some of the trimmed leaves we are making Curry Leaf Kuzhambu with Tamarind. It is another gorgeous kuzhambu, designed to be eaten like a gravy served over rice or other grains.
Similar recipes include Okra Kuzhambu, Coconut Milk Kuzhambu, and Green Chilli Kuzhambu.
Browse all of our Curry Leaf recipes and all of our Kuzhambus. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Early Spring recipes.
Continue reading “Curry Leaves Tamarind Kuzhambu | Karuveppilai Kuzhambu”
This is a delightful dish made with beetroot cooked with freshly ground spices to form a gravy that is delicious with rice or poppadom. It is really easy to make, especially if you have pre prepared the spice mix.
Vathal Kuzhambu is a dish that is prepared with Vathal (dried vegetables) like Mangai Vathal (Raw Mango), Sundakai Vathal (Turkey Berry), Manathakkali Vathal (Black Night Shade), or with fresh vegetables such as Eggplant, Beetroot or Okra. It is often made with sambar powder, but it is best to avoid using purchased sambar powder for this recipe – prepare the spices fresh for this recipe by roasting and grinding spices to make vathakuzhambu podi.
Similar recipes include Curry Leaf Tamarind Kuzhambu, Uppadam, Vathal Kuzhambu, and Moar Kuzhambu.
Browse all of our Kuzhambu dishes. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Late Winter recipes.
We use Australian measurements: 1 tspn = 5ml; 1 Tblspn = 20ml; 1 cup = 250ml.
Continue reading “Beetroot Vathakuzhambu”
This Poritha Kuzhambu is made using the third of 3 methods outlined by Meenakshi Ammal in her 4 volumes of Cook and See. It sautees the spices before grinding them to a paste and adding to the dish. This deepens the flavours and adds a toasted overtone.
Poritha Kuzhambus are very delicious. These recipes are without tamarind and with coconut added for a beautiful sense of the tropical South of India. Beautiful indeed.
You might like to find out more about Kuzhambu. We suggest that you read The Difference Between Sambar, Kuzhambu and Kootu. Also have a look at the other methods of making Poritha Kuzhambu. The differences are minor, but they do change the flavours significantly. The first uses Sambar Powder, and the second replaces that with a few individual spices.
Similar recipes include Puli Keerai, Plain Masiyal of Amaranth Leaves, Beetroot Vathakuzhambu, Green Chilli Kuzhambu, Fenugreek Kuzhambu, Green Amaranth Soup with Tamarind, and Race Kuzhambu.
Are you looking for the recipes of Meenakshi Ammal? They are here. She certainly is my guru of Tamil Brahmin cuisine.
All of our Sambar and Kuzhambu dishes can be browsed here. Or have a look at all of our Indian recipes. Or you may like to explore our Late Summer recipes.
Continue reading “Poritha Kuzhambu”
I have been showering you with a range of Kootu recipes without tamarind, and they are glorious! But, occasionally, Kootu can include some tamarind for that lovely tangy taste. It is best to use Toor Dal, rather than Mung dal, when tamarind is used.
This recipe uses a ground masala with coconut, cumin and urad dal (black gram dal). Some households use black pepper instead of cumin. Poritha Kootu with Tamarind can be made with a medley of vegetables, rather than the single vegetable that is preferred for Poritha Kuzhambu. Another feature of this dish that you will notice, is that it includes legumes and/or beans as well as the dal.
Remember that this is a thicker dish than Poritha Kuzhambu, so cook the dal and vegetables in less water than you might otherwise.
This recipe is again one of Meenakshi Ammal’s from the first volume of Cook and See. Such a tangle it was, but I think that I have untangled it well. I do hope that you enjoy. We have used Drumstick Leaves (Moringa) as our vegetable.
Would you like to try other Poritha Kootu recipes? Try Poritha Kootu with Sambar Powder and Poritha Kootu without Cumin. Recipes with Chickpeas include Chana Masala.
Why not browse through Meenakshi Ammal’s recipes? They are here.
Then browse all of the Poritha Kootu recipes. All of our Sambar and Kuzhambu dishes can be browsed here. Have a look at all of our Indian recipes. Or you may like to explore our Early Autumn recipes.
Continue reading “Poritha Kootu with Chickpeas and Tamarind”
This Kothsu (also spelled Gothsu or Kosthu) is a tamarind based South Indian curry that is made by roasting and mashing eggplant and popping it into a spicy tamarind gravy. It is the second Kosthu of this kind that we have posted. The first one, Brinjal Tamarind Kothsu, uses a different spice mix with the eggplant. These Kothsu recipes are different to many others as they are made with roasted eggplants which gives them a smoky flavour.
Some people get these two Brinjal Kothsu dishes confused with Chidambaram Brinjal Kothsu, but they are different. Chidambaram Brinjal Kothsu is made with toor dal and without tamarind. Today’s Brinjal Kothsu is made without any dal, and includes tamarind. There is only a little gravy which is thickened with some rice flour, so it just coats the eggplant. You can see that the two dishes are quite different.
This recipe can also be made with plantain (green banana) or onions instead of eggplant. See the notes below the recipe for more details.
Are you after similar recipes? Try Plantain Poriyal, Curry Leaf Tamarind Kuzhambu, Brinjal Tamarind Kothsu, Cabbage Kosthu, and Chidambaram Brinjal Kothsu.
Or would you like other Eggplant dishes? Try Pitlai, Aubergines in Coconut Milk, and Baingan ka Bharta.
Or browse all of the Kothsu dishes, and all of the Eggplant dishes. Meenakshi Ammal’s recipes are available here, and all of our Indian recipes are here. Or simply explore our Late Autumn dishes.
Continue reading “Brinjal Kothsu with Tamarind | Sutta Kathirikkai Gothsu | Roasted Eggplants in a Spicy Tamarind Gravy”
Uppadam is an older recipe, one which people recall their Grandmothers or perhaps Mothers making, but which seems to have lost favour in the current generations. It is generally made with okra, and, as Uppadam means something that is preserved, with vatral, sun-dried vegetables, as well. Manathakkali vatral is traditionally used, and I searched high and low for it. It is difficult to obtain here, it seems, so Sundakkai is the recommended alternative. Sundakkai is sun-dried Turkey Berry/Pea Eggplants.
There are a few ways of making Kuzhambu style dishes with okra, but I particularly like this way. It has that sense of connecting one with past generations of women cooking in the kitchens of South India, or directing the making of similar dishes with a specialist’s hand. The okra is cooked with spices and the vatral, before tamarind and a paste of toasted rice, fenugreek, and chillies is added. This thickens the dish, so it is half way between a Rasam and a Sambar. Meenakshi Ammal has a similar recipe, and I will share that one too, in due course.
Roasting the rice will interest you. It releases more moisture that you thought possible, and the grain itself therefore changes somewhat. Roast until it is aromatic.
Similar dishes include Sundakkai Rice, Whole Okra with Onions and Garlic, Beetroot Vathakuzhambu, Green Chilli Kuzhambu, Fenugreek Kuzhambu, and Vatral Kuzhambu.
Browse all of our Okra dishes and all of our Kuzhambu recipes. All of our Indian recipes are here, and our Indian Essentials are here. Or explore our Mid Summer dishes.
Continue reading “Uppadam | Okra Kuzhambu with Sundakkai Vatral”
Turkey Berry is also called Small Thai Eggplant, Wild Eggplant, Pea Eggplant and Sundakkai (in Tamil). It is a slightly bitter, tiny pea-sized vegetable very common in Thailand and in parts of India. You can add Turkey Berries to your list of slightly bitter foods that have so many health-giving properties – fenugreek, bitter gourd, pomelo, radicchio, Belgian endive, Escarole and other chicory greens. But don’t be afraid, they have only a slight bitter backnote and it is delightful.
The Turkey Berries first need to be picked from their stems. This is the sort of job that is similar to shelling peas or peeling broad beans – best done while watching your favourite show on TV or sitting outside in the sunshine. Then rinse them well in cold water.
This dish, Puli Kuzhambu, is a quick Kuzhambu, a gravy-style dish that is generally eaten with rice. It has such a wonderful flavour! Deep and rich. In this recipe the Turkey Berries are stir fried with spices before being added to a tamarind gravy. You will love it.
Similar dishes include Sundakkai Rice, Okra Kuzhambu with Vathral, Green Chilli Kuzhambu, Coconut Masala Kuzhambu, and Simple Seasoned Kuzhambu.
You might also enjoy Sundakkai Sambar, and Sundakkai Vathal Podi.
Check here to see other Turkey Berry recipes. Browse all of our Kuzhambu dishes and all of our Indian recipes. Or take some time to explore our Late Autumn dishes.
Continue reading “Sundakkai Puli Kuzhambu | Turkey Berry Kuzhambu | Pea Eggplants in Spicy Gravy”