After all the celebrations coming to an end it is time to enjoy some traditional food. When I think of Traditional South Indian Food it reminds me of the grand lunches that are served in big plantain leaves during weddings and festivals. The variety of food served makes us forget all our diet plans. We just simply jump in and enjoy the food. The food offered has all types of flavors well blended together and it is served in the right order. First we start with the dal and ghee, then spicy kuzhambu, then rasam and then more kuzhambu. Finally we finish the meal with a sweet. The spicy gravies in the meal would be mostly Mizhagu Kuzhambu, Vendhya Kuzhambu etc., Today I will be sharing my Mom's Style Vendhaya Kuzhambu with you all.
When we were small my mom used to make all kind of thogaiyals and medicinal kuzhambu varieties once in a week to boost digestion. Vendhaya Kuzhambu/Fenugreek gravy is one such recipe. Fenugreek as such has many medicinal values so she made it a point to use it often. I simply love her version. The slight bitter taste from the fenugreek seeds, tanginess from the tamarind make the gravy a keeper. It is usually made as thick gravy and served with hot steaming rice. I normally serve this gravy along with Seppankizhangu Fry. The combination is super good. Due to the spice level, I also make some More Kuzhambu/Buttermilk Gravy which helps counter balance.
Preparation Time - 10 minutes
Cooking Time - 15 minutes
Serves : 4 people
Pearl Onion - 8 - 10 no
Garlic flakes - 8 - 10 no
Dry Red Chilly - 2 -3 no
Tamarind - Lemon size
Coriander Powder - 1 1/2 tsp
Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp
Fenugreek - 1 1/4 tsp
Whole peppercorns - 1 tsp
Cumin Seeds - 1
Mustard - 1 1/4 tsp
Asafoetida/Hing - 1 pinch
Curry Leaves - 2 Sprigs
Sesame Oil - 2 tsp
Salt to taste
- Peel and cut the onion and garlic into fine pieces.
- Soak the tamarind for 15 minutes or microwave for 1 min and extract thick tamarind juice.
- Dry roast the whole peppercorns, cumin seeds, 1/4 tsp fenugreek, 1/4 tsp mustard in medium flame until aroma rises. Allow it cool down and grind to a fine powder.
- Soak remaining 1 tsp fenugreek seeds for about 30 minutes.
- Heat sesame oil in a kadai and add the mustard, asafoetida, when the mustard starts to crackle drain the soaked fenugreek seeds and add it.
- Next add the chopped garlic, 1 sprig curry leaves, followed by the onions.
- When the onion turns translucent add the red chillies.
- Reduce the flame to low, add the ground powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder and saute. Do not burn the powders
- Next add the tamarind juice, salt and mix everything well.
- Close the kadai with a lid and cook in medium flame for about 10 minutes checking in between.
- Once the oil separates, garnish with curry leaves and serve with hot rice.
- If you do not have pearl onions you can replace it with 1 red onion.
- Do not burn or allow the contents to be browned it spoils the taste of the gravy.
- Soaking the fenugreek seeds before, releases the flavor to the gravy.