Monday, August 25, 2008

Puliyodarai (Tamarind Rice) - I

So, after many months of salivating looking at all the different puliyodarai recipes/photos I have come across, I decided its time to turn the page... make some puliyodarai paste from scratch. Though many of them swear by MTR's puliyodarai powder I am not one of their greatest fans. Well, the reason for this is my friend V's mom, rather her awesome puliyodarai powder. She used to send us loads of this powder all the way from Mumbai and every time we had a pot luck our go to dish was puliyodarai made with this powder. It was such an easy dish to make and also an easy item to carry coz unlike the usual puliyodarai paste which oozes with oil, this was a powder which lasted the 10,000 mile trip and the green channel with no problems at all. Another major advantage was its long shelf life, it lasted in our freezer for almost an year or even longer. Needless to say this dish turned out to be the star of the show every time we made it. I keep telling V that her mom should patent this recipe, start a small scale business and I am sure it will turn out to be a super hit :-) I will probably be the first one to stock up on it !!!
Anyway, getting back to the present, I decided to take the conventional path and make the traditional puliyodarai paste. My recipe here is based on ideas I drew from two of my most trusted sources: My mom and Google. I improvised my mom's recipe added a few ingredients of my own (such as sugar) to make one that I think turned out to be a keeper. So here is my take on the traditional puliyodarai recipe. Depending on your taste and heat level you prefer, adjust the amount of tamarind concentrate and red chillies.


2 tbsp chana dal

1 tbsp urad dal

2 tbsp dhaniya

1/2 tbsp seasme seeds

1 tbsp jeera

1/2 tbsp fenugreek

10-12 red chillies

11/2 tbsp tamarind concentrate

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp sugar

salt to taste


1 tsp chana dal

1 tsp urad dal

2 tbsp peanuts

4-5 curry leaves

2 red chillies

1 tsp jeera

1 tsp mustard

1/2 tsp hing

1 tbsp oil


  1. Roast all the ingredients starting from chana dal to red chillies, individually and powder it together.
  2. Dissolve the tamarind concentrate in water.
  3. Heat oil in a large pan, add chana dal, urad dal, peanuts and when it is starting to brown add jeera, mustard, curry leaves, red chillies and hing.
  4. Now add tamarind, salt, sugar, turmeric and allow this to boil well.
  5. When the raw smell of tamarind disappears, add the prepared powder.
  6. Let this cook until the mixture thickens.
  7. Let cool and store it in a air-tight container.
Preparing the rice:
  1. Cook 2 cups of rice and spread it in a large bowl.
  2. Mix in 1-2 tsp oil, then add 2 tbsp of the prepared mixture.
  3. Adjust the amount of the mixture according to taste.
  4. Serve with vadaam/chips or just plain yogurt.
To store:
  • Store in a dry air-tight container.
  • This paste can be stored in the refrigerator for almost 2-3 weeks.
  • If the paste dries out add a couple of tsp of oil to the mixture.
This is my entry to "Long live the shelf" event hosted by Roma.

Help Needed: Srivalli of "Cooking 4 All Seasons" blog is doing a great job of raising funds for a noble cause. Please visit her site and help her help a person in need.


Arundathi said...

yum! love puliyodarai!

romaspace said...

I usually buy the MTR powder but now on reading your recipe I think I should start making it.

Your Puliyodarai looks really delicious and authentic. Thanks for sharing your recipe. I have bookmarked it to try.

Rajee said...

Thanks Arundathi and Roma. Do let me know how it turned out...

Srivalli said...

anytime ready for pulihora!..yours look delicious!

easycrafts said...

Nice recipe..I have an award for u on my blog

Rajee said...

Thanks EC for the award. Thats very sweet of you.... I will visit you blog soon.

kate said...

Puliyodara looks delicious and tempting.