Pulikuzhambu is a south Indian gravy made from tamarind. Again, there are many variations to it based on geographical locations. It is specific to Tamilnadu. Pulikuzhambu is very easy to make and involves very limited ingredients. It is one of the main dishes served in a marriage feast along with Sambar. There are many variations of Pulikuzhambu but I would say almost every one of them is easy to make.
Pulikuzhambu is one of my favorite vegetarian dishes. I love the tanginess (because of tamarind) in it. And I love the one prepared by my mom. There is this tradition in most of the homes in Tamilnadu where quite often families have dinner under moon light, sharing food with their dear ones. It is called as Nilachoru (Nila- Moon, Choru – rice) in Tamil. Pulikuzhambu is often the dish that we used to have in our nilachoru back home. So whenever I prepare Pulikuzhambu here, I feel nostalgic and start missing my home.
The drumstick Pulikuzhambu recipe that I have given here is my Mom’s so it guaranteed to come out well when you prepare it :). I love having Pulikuzhambu with rice and poriyal (for which I given the recipe here (link)) and also with curd (yoghurt). So do try this wonderful and simple recipe at your home and let me know your comments.
- Gingelly oil – 1 tbs
- Mustard seeds & urad dal - 1 tsp each
- Fennel seeds- ½ tsp
- Curry leaves- a sprig
- Shallots – 7 nos (cut lenghtwise)
- Garlic cloves – 5 (cut lenghtwise)
- Drumstick – 1 (cut into equal pieces)
- Sambar powder – 1 to 2 tbs
- Grated coconut – 1 tbs
- Tamarind – big gooseberry size
- Salt as required
- Soak tamarind in a cup of water and extract the juice.
- Blend together a shallot, grated coconut and a tbs of sambar powder with little water to make a paste.
- Heat a pan with gingelly oil followed by mustard, urad dal, fennel seeds and curry leaves. When they start to sizzle, add in chopped garlic and sauté for few seconds until the aroma spreads. Add shallots and sauté for a while.
- When the shallots turn translucent, add sambar powder followed by drumstick. Give a quick stir and add the ground paste and the tamarind extract. Stir and bring it to boil. Close the lid and cook until the drumstick is done (drumsticks easily disintegrates when you poke it with your cooking spatula).
- Serve hot with any poriyal or kootu. Enjoy!