Poricha Kuzhambu

Poricha Kuzhambu is a typical Palakkad dish. I wonder why I don’t make it more frequently? But it’s not only me – seems it is not top-of-mind for a lot of people. And yet, when you remind them of this dish, they all exclaim that it is an excellent dish and super tasty. I suppose there are some dishes that are not top-of-mind.
Personally, I always make a mental note to remember this dish and make it at least once a month. But, in reality, it pops into my head about one in six months!
The dish is really simple, traditional and super tasty. It pairs wonderfully with rice.
I just made another resolution – I must make Poricha Kuzhambu at least once a month.

Poricha Kuzhambu

1 cup pigeon peas (tur dal, thuvaram parupu)
A small ball of tamarind, soaked and juice extracted
1 tsp turmeric powder (haldi, manjal podi)
3 cups of cubed vegetables (the vegetables normally used in this preparation, in equal proportion, are raw banana, elephant yam and eggplant. I did not use the yam)
Salt to taste
For The Masala
1 tsp Bengal gram (chana dal, kadalai parupu)
1 tsp split black lentils (urad dal, ulutham parupu)
1 tsp black pepper corns (sabut kali mirch, kuru milagu)
A pinch of asafoetida (hing, perunkayam)
4-5 dried red chilis
1/4 coconut, grated
For The Seasoning
2 tsp grated coconut
1 tsp mustard seeds (sarson, kadugu)
1 sprig curry leaves
Wash and cook the pigeon peas (mushy consistency)
Set aside
Add the tamarind juice to a heavy bottomed vessel and add more water, if necessary (the tamarind juice must be watery, not a thick consistency)
Add turmeric and salt to the tamarind juice
Add the cubed vegetables
Place on stove and cook the vegetables
Meanwhile, roast the ingredients mentioned under ‘For The Masala’, except grated coconut
Cool and transfer to a blender
Add the grated coconut
Grind to a paste
Set aside
Once the vegetables in the tamarind juice are cooked, add the masala to the tamarind juice
Mix well and add curry leaves
Bring to a boil and remove from flame
Set aside
Heat a small wok and add the mustard seeds
When they begin to splutter, add the grated coconut
Roast till the coconut is golden brown
Add this to the cooked kuzhambu
Serve hot with red/brown rice or millets

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