Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Kara Kuzhambu for Tried and Tasted

I have lived in Karnataka all my life before coming to U.S. Only place that I stayed apart from Mysore, Bangalore area is Secunderabad. I was there for about 4 months before moving here. So, I have never tasted Tamil Nadu cuisine except in some restaurants. As some of you might know that I am hosting the 'Tried and Tasted' event this month and the blog chosen was Divya's Dilse.

When I went through her up to date recipe index, what caught my attention was this 'Kara Kuzhambu' which I have never tried or tasted in my life. This she says is 'Chettinad Style' and she gives the option of using vegetables in it, which I did. I changed the recipe a little bit in using the vegetables and reducing the garlic since we like the garlic flavor very mild.

Here goes my version..


Red Onion - 1 large or 2 small diced
Tomato - 1 cut into chunks
Garlic - 3 pods
Tamarind - a lemon size soaked in water and juice extracted
Turmeric - 1/2 teaspoon
Chilli powder - 1 teaspoon
Jaggery - 1 TBSP (Don't skip this. This brings out the other flavors together)
Salt -  to taste
Oil - 1 TBSP

Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
fenugreek seeds –1 tsp

Dry red chilies - 2 broken
Curry leaves – 1 spring

Oil - 2 TBSP

Masala to grind:
Coconut - 2 TBSP
Peppercorns - 1 tsp
Cumin seeds - 1 tsp
Coriander seeds - 1 tsp

Vegetables that I added:
Eggplant - 1 medium size cut into medium chunks
Potato - 1 small peeled and cut into medium chunks

In a pan, heat 1 TBSP oil. When hot, add garlic pods, chopped onions. Stir and add turmeric and a little bit of salt. Let it cook. When onions are cooked, add chopped tomatoes, red chilli powder. When tomatoes are cooked, turn off the heat and let it cool down a bit.

Meanwhile, in another pan, heat 2 TBSP of oil. When hot, add mustard seeds. When they splutter, add broken red chillies, fenugreek, cumin, curry leaves. When they are done, add chopped eggplant, potato. Add some salt and saute for a minute or two. Cover with enough water and close the lid till the vegetables are almost cooked.
Take the onion tomato masala in a blender. To this, add cumin seeds, coconut, coriander seeds, pepper corns mentioned in 'Masala to Grind' part. Make a paste of this. When the vegetables are almost done, add this paste and tamarind juice, jaggery and mix. Let it come to a boil. Adjust the thickness by adding more water if necessary. Adjust the salt and chilli powder if needed and simmer for couple of minutes and turn off the heat. Serve with rice.

I really liked the taste of this and it is a nice change from the traditional sambar I make which has roasted dals with the other masala. Thank you Divya for a wonderful recipe.

Enjoy!! Pin It


  1. KharaKhuzambu looks very delicious.

  2. very unique recipe to me..looks delicious...liked the way its presented..so inviting......

  3. looks rich and delicious dear

  4. Lovely kara kuzhambhu! that combined with hot rice and some papadam or egg fry is a heavenly combo for me.

  5. Just love this gravy with papads, very tempting and inviting..

  6. Looks great and lovely presentation too :)

  7. Glad you liked the recipe :) Beautifully presented. Thanks for trying!

  8. Yummy kuzhambu..presented so well..

  9. Looks delicious ! Haven't tried much of Chettinad style food..

  10. never had this curry.. should def give it a try!! nice one dear


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