Tamarind Rice / Puliyogare Gojju / Pulikachal

When we talk about south Indian food, there are some dishes which we quickly recall, like Idli, dosa for breakfast and bisibelebath or other rice varieties for lunch.
This recipe, is famous in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu states in India. The names change as per region. Although the recipe may alter slightly in both states the basic ingredients and procedure remains unchanged. I recall the days when my grandparents use to prepare them for long train journey or short picnics with family. My grandfather ran his own restaurant in Chennai /Madras during his younger days, hence these recipes were prepared quiet often and relished by all of us in the family and I learnt this recipe from my mother.
It is a really tasty and absolutely delicious food for lunch time. Fried Potato curry with a crispy papad is a perfect accompaniment for this dish. Do give it a shot.


Powder for the paste:

• Sesame seeds 2 tbsp
• Corriander seeds 2 tbsp
• Cumin seeds 1tbsp
• Urad dal 1 tbsp
• Channa dal 1 tbsp
• Pepper corn ½tsp
• Methi seeds /Fenugreek seeds ¼tsp
• Dry coconut (either shredded or cut into pieces)¼cup
• Dry red chilli 8  (I used normal red chilli 5 and Kashmiri red chilli 3 for colour)


• Take a pan, first dry roast the sesame seeds until it turns golden brown and keep it aside.
• To the same pan add sesame oil and keeping the stove in low flame, fry the Corriander seeds, Cumin seeds, channa dal, urad dal, methi seeds & pepper corn. Fry them until they turn golden brown.
• Now include the dry red chilli, dry coconut and fry for about 2 to 5 min in low flame.
• Allow this to cool to room temperature and grind them to a fine powder.
• You may double the above quantity to prepare this powder and keep it in advance and use it as and when you need to prepare the Puliyogare paste.
• The above quantity will be perfect for one time preparation for the Puliyogare paste.
• In case you do not have or would like to avoid Dry coconut you may do so.

Ingredients for Puliyogare Paste.

• Thick Tamarind water ½ cup
• Sesame oil ¼ cup
• Mustard 1tsp
• Channa dal 1 tsp
• Ground nut 1 tsp
• Curry leaves 1 sprig
• Puliyogare powder (recipe above)
• Dry red chilli 2 broken in halves
• Turmeric powder ½tsp
• Asafoetida ¼tsp
• Jaggery powder 3.5 tbsp
• Water 1 cup
• Salt as per taste. 


• Heat sesame oil in a wok, and add mustard seeds, once they splutter, reduce the flame to low and  add channa dal, ground nut, dry red chilli, curry leaves and asafoetida and fry until the dal and ground nut turn golden brown.
• Now include the thick Tamarind water along with salt and Turmeric powder. Add an extra cup of water. Cover and allow this to boil well. (You have to see them bubbling) 
• Now add jaggery powder and prepared Puliyogare powder.
• Keep stirring until the oil separates from the pan and into forms a thick paste. Do not leave it unattended at this time.
• Once you see it come together into a thick consistency turn off the stove. Transfer into a container. Tamarind Rice paste can stay for about 10 to 15 days refrigerated.

• To prepare Tamarind Rice, heat sesame oil in a wok and add mustard seeds, curry leaves, ground nuts, keep the flame low and add 2 tablespoon of Puliyogare paste and 2 cups of cooked rice and mix it without breaking the rice.
• Alternatively, you may avoid the above tempering procedure and mix it with hot rice and sesame oil as well.

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