Puli Saadam or Tamarind Rice

It was very strange that I tried several new dishes but our favourite puli saadam or tamarind rice never occurred to me all these days. I remember during childhood whenever we traveled long distance or for journey by train or for any local picnics, my mom and maternal grandma used to pack puli sadaam with some thovial . We will all die to have them; somehow our digestive juices would start secreting an hour or two before our usual lunch time if we know puli saadam is for lunch. Gone are the days, but the hunger remains…

Serves: 3
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes

1.      Tamarind – lemon sized ball
2.    Red chilies – 3
3.    Gingelly oil – 4 tbsp
4.    Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp
5.     Mustard seeds – ½ tsp
6.    Urad dal – 1 tbsp
7.     Bengal gram – 1 tbsp
8.    Groundnuts – 3 tbsp
9.    Curry leaves – 1 sprig
10.            Jaggery – a pinch
11.  Fenugreek powder – ¼ tsp
12.Asafoetida – 2 pinches
13.Salt to taste
14.Steamed rice – 3 cups

Step 1: Soak tamarind in water preferably luke warm water for 15 minutes and then extract juice from it.
Step 2: Heat oil in a kadai and splutter mustard seeds in it, roast groundnuts Bengal gram & urad dal. When they are brown enough add broken red chilies, curry leaves and sprinkle asafoetida and turmeric powder.
Step 3: Now add the tamarind juice to the kadai and boil until it thickens and forms a sauce like consistency. Add salt, jaggery and the fenugreek powder.
Step 4: Turn off heat.

Step 5: Spread the steamed rice in a wide mixing bowl or plate, pour the puli kachal (the prepared tamarind sauce) and mix well without breaking the rice. Adjust salt and oil as required.
Step 6: Serve or pack with pickles or thovials or fryums or plain curds. It is as such good without any accompaniment.

*The prepared puli kachal (the spiced tamarind sauce) can be stored in air tight container and refrigerated for a week which can be mixed with hot steamed rice as and when required.

*If you like to retain the crunch in the groundnuts add it roasted finally while mixing with rice.


Maainji (Mango-ginger) Rice

I have not had mango-ginger in any form other than pickle. This time when I got mango-ginger I wanted to prepare anything but pickle; from internet (more specifically from www.7aumsuvai.com) I learnt mango ginger rice can be prepared and was more than happy to try it out. It so flavorful but tastes & looks more like lemon rice.


1. Mango ginger –  4″ piece
2. Curry leaves – 1 sprig
3. Dry red chilies – 3
4. Oil – 2 tbsp
5. Urad dal – 1 tbsp
6. Bengal gram – 1 tbsp
7. Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
8. Asafoetida – 1 pinch
9. Turmeric powder – 1 pinch
10. Onion – 1 small (optional)
11. Lemon juice – 1-2 tbsp (optional)
12. Cooked rice – 2 cups
13. Salt to taste


Step 1:  Wash, peel and grate the mango ginger; chop onion finely if using.
Step 2: Heat oil in a kadai, splutter mustards seeds in it, fry bengal gram & urad dal, add broken chilies, curry leaves and sprinkle asafoetida & turmeric powder.
Step 3: Saute onion (if using) and then grated mango-ginger.
Step 4: Now add cooked rice, salt to taste and mix thoroughly. Drizzle more oil and lemon juice if required.
Step 5: Serve with any fries or papads.

* Roasted peanuts can be added in the tempering which will make it more tasty and healthy.


Carrot Rice

I remember those school days when my mom used to try all possible ways to make me eat vegetables because I was choosy with vegetables. I couldn’t eat carrot in any form other than raita but that can’t be packed for lunch. So she tried this carrot rice which became favorite dish for me and my friends.


1.        Steamed rice – 2 cups
2.        Carrot grated – 1 cup
3.        Green chillies – 2
4.        Mustard seeds – ¼ tsp
5.        Cumin seeds – ¼ tsp
6.        Urad dal – 1 tbsp
7.        Bengal gram – 1 tbsp
8.        Curry leaves – 1 sprig
9.        Onion – ½ cup finely chopped
10.    Ginger garlic paste – ½ tsp
11.    Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp
12.    Garam masala – 1 tsp
13.    Chili powder – 1/2 tsp
14.    Coriander – 2 tbsp finely chopped
15.    Salt as per taste
16.    Oil – 2 tbsp


Step 1: Heat oil in a pan, splutter mustard seeds, cumin seeds, add Bengal gram and urad dal, put chopped green chilies, throw in curry leaves and sauté onion in it, and then add ginger garlic paste and turmeric powder

Step 2:  Mix grated carrot, sprinkle salt and garam masala, and cover the lid to cook for 2 minutes by simmering the heat

Step 3: Open the lid, sprinkle chopped coriander and steamed rice and mix thoroughly with light hand to avoid breaking the rice. Adjust salt if required

Step 4: This can be served warm without any side dish or chilled plain curd to complement it

Fenugreek Rice

Fenugreek is cherished as one of the power houses in Ayurvedha and is very cooling to the body. I always  struggle to find recipes to add some fenugreek and I would say fenugreek-rice is came as a wonderful recipe. So this is nice for people who do not like fenugreek and of course, for others it is a treat. My aunt is so fond of this that she already publicized the recipe in her entire circle all by word of mouth.

Serves: 2
Preparation Time: 10 Minutes
Cooking Time: 30 Minutes
1.       Steamed rice – 2 cups

2.       Fenugreek – 2 tbsp

3.       Coconut – 2” piece

4.       Green chilies – 2

5.       Salt to taste

6.       Oil – 2 tbsp

7.       Mustard seeds – 1 tsp

8.       Turmeric powder – 1 pinch

9.       Urad dal – 1 tbsp

10.   Curry leaves – 1 sprig

11.   Asafoetida -1 pinch

                  12.   Dry chili – 1


Step 1: There are 3 ways you can prepare the fenugreek; 1. Soak them overnight, 2. Sprout them after soaking, 3. Directly use cooked fenugreek. The prepared fenugreek would be about ¼ cup.

Step 2: Char the coconut piece and green chilies and grinder them together in a mixer jar.

Step 3:  Heat oil in a non-stick pan, splutter mustard seeds, sprinkle asafoetida & turmeric, add urad dal, thrown in curry leaves and chili and add the fenugreek. Add some salt and sauté until it is done.

Step 4: Add the ground coconut mix and saute for a minute.

Step 5: Add the steamed rice along with required salt and mix gently to smear the entire rice with with masala.

Step 6: Adjust salt and serve with curds or papad. 

Pepper Rice

Pepper is hot in taste and is a coolant to the body; there is nothing that helps cough and cold pepper in any form. I’ve heard that in some temple they give pepper rice as prasadam; but even if you have it prepared at home it is so tasty.


1. Black pepper – 2 tsp
2. Mustard seeds – ½ tsp
3. Cumin seeds – ½ tsp
4. Sesame seeds – 1 tsp
5. Curry leaves – 2 sprigs
6. Ghee – 2 tbsp
7. Cooked rice – 2 cups
8. Salt to taste


Step 1: Dry roast the curry leaves, pepper corns and sesame seeds until aroma emanates and grind them into coarse powder once cooled.
Step 2: Season mustard and cumin in a tawa with ghee and add cooked rice to that.

Step 3: Sprinkle enough salt and the ground powder and mix thoroughly to coat the rice evenly.

Step 4: Serve with appalam/ curds or plain rasam.