Saturday, 29 August 2015

Puliodharai / Tamarind Rice !

Tamarind Rice / Puliodharai (Tamil) / Chinthapandu Pulihora (Telugu) is a classic rice dish that is best known for 2 things.. One is for travel and other served in temples :)
I often make this for lunch box and after trying out this recipe many times adjusting the amount of spice, tamarind etc, finaly i am making this a keeper. 
This recipe can also be made from left over rice or freshly cooked rice. It involves preparing two things the Tamarind Paste (Pulikaichal) and the Puliogare Powder. The best thing is both of these can be made and stored in more quantities and just rice can be mixed and Puliogare and can be enjoyed anytime.


  • 1 1/4 cup uncooked rice (basmati or long grain or any rice) (1 cup = 240 ml std cup size)
  • 1 tbsp ghee

For Pulikaichal (Tamarind Paste)

  • Tamarind (Big Lemon size)
  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • 1 tsp Mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tbsp Urad Dal
  • 1/2 tbsp Channa Dal
  • few curry leaves
  • 2 Dry Red Chillis
  • 2 tbsp Groundnuts
  • salt as needed
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1/2 tbsp crushed jaggery

For the Powder

  • 1 tbsp Urad Dal
  • 1 tbsp Channa Dal
  • 7 to 8 Dry Red Chillis
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Coriander Seeds
  • 1/2 tbsp Pepper corns
  • 1/2 tbsp Sesame seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Fenugreek Seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Asafoedita

  • Heat a pan and roast the dals till slight golden brown.
  • Then add red chillis, coriander seeds, pepper , fenugreek seeds and roast well.
  • Finally add sesame seeds and hing , roast for a minute and turn off stove.
  • Cool the roasted mixture and grind to a coarse powder.
  • Soak  tamarind in half cup of  water for 5 - 10 minutes and then microwave it for 30 seconds to extract tamarind juice easily.
  • Do not add so much water when extractting else you will have to cook for a long time to get the paste.
  •  Now heat oil in a pan, add mustard seeds, urad dal and channa dal. Once the dals turn golden brown, add currry leaves, peanuts,. broken red chillis and fry for few secconds.
  • Then add the tamarind extract, stir and let it cook.
  •  Add salt, turmeric powder , jaggery and allow the mixture (pulikaichal) to cook and reduce in quantity and forms a nice paste. Add a spoon of ghee to it.
  • Cook rice perfectly that each and every grain is separate. Cool the rice before you start mixing it with the tamarind paste.

  • Add the tamarind paste (Pulikaichal) to the rice and mix gently that every rice grain is coated well.
  • Now add the ground powder and mix well again. 

  • You can make this with leftover rice too.
  • Adjust the spice levels (red chillis, coriander and pepper) as per your taste.
  • You can make the pulikaichal in more quantity and store it in fridge for upto 2 weeks or more.
  • The powder too can be made and stored in an airtight container and when you have both of these, just cook rice and mix and puliogare is ready.
  • Dont skip the jaggery as it balances the flavors and gives a nice taste.

With Love,

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