Puliyodharai, Puliyogare or Tamrind rice is the Southern States signature dish .
Each of these states have some small differences in the ingredients used but by and large they all have the unique, appetizing tongue tickling spicy taste which makes you want to eat more of this amazing tangy spicy rice. The recipes from Karnataka vary slightly includes some cinnamon. Tamilnadu spice mix varies in a small way. I like to try the different variations every time I grind a fresh batch.
Puliyodharai is also a Vishnu Temple Prasad served almost everyday and that rice has somethng unique about it so much so that there are several recipes called Temple puliyodharai , or Kovil Puliyodharai .I have also posted similar recipes. It is almost impossible to replicate that divine temple taste.
While the authentic version is the method of extracting tamrind juice and making a spicy reduced sauce with a choice of condiments, the process is a bit laborious and time consuming as we need to stand by the gas stove and keep an eye on the thickened sauce getting ready without scorching the pan. Another disadvantage is we need to use more oil to preserve this tangy sauce in bottles. Whereas in powder form , ready to make, we ned not use oil except of roasting and tempering. Oil is significantly reduced.
The convenience of enjoying a almost near perfect Puliyodharai the same way without the long process by using home made ready to make mix is so useful to many households and the ease with which the powder can be made within 15 minutes makes it even more tempting. This recipe also helps us to avoid buying highly priced ready to make mix available in stores.
Such ready to make mixes are very handy to send with our near and dear ones when they have to leave home for various purposes, studies abroad, business trips etc. All they need to do is add the required amount of powder to hot rice , add a tsp of gingelly oil/sesame oil preferably , mix well and have with papad.
Send these ready to make mix in ziploc bags with simple instructions and your family will be eternally grateful to you !!
This instant tamrind rice powder can be stored for months and I usually replenish after three months .
It is always better to make small batches of these ready to make mixes as we tend to forget , they exist sometimes !! or we may not use them so much.So every time once in three months we can replenish the stock using fresh spices.
1/2 cup coriander seeds ( dhaniya)
10 red dry chillies, ( long thin variety or the small round ones or a mix of both .Reduce the no of chillies if you feel it may be spicy, instead you can add some Kashmiri chili powder after the mix is ground and ready, after tasting you can add the powder to the mix.Your choice.)
1/2 tsp pepper corns.
1/2 tsp methi ( fenugreek seeds )
4 tsp white sesame seeds or even black will do.
1 tbsp chana dal ,
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 medium lime size tamrind + 1 tbsp ( to mean slightly more than 1 medium lime)
salt to taste
A handful of curry leaves.
3 tbsp desiccated coconut ( optional ) I skipped this .
1 tsp asafoetida powder or in crystal form .
2-3 tsp sesame oil ( preferred) for roasting ingredients.
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp split udada dal
1 tsp chana dal
2 tbsp roasted peanuts
some broken cashewnuts ( optional )
1 tsp sesame oil for tempering.
Take a wide pan, add the oil and first roast the sesame seeds , as it gets darkened easily, let it pop and then remove , keep aside, .
If adding desiccated coconut ( kopra) , roast that separately till golden, remove and set aside to cool, ,also separately roast the tamrind till it becomes brittle or keep in microwave to make it crisp. remove and keep aside.
Then roast rest of ingredients except the tempering ingredients, turmeric powder, .on a very low flame, constantly stirring the ingredients in the pan to avoid blackening.
Towards the end add the curry leaves, let it become crisp , remove from pan.
Let all ingredients cool well.
Make sure you have added the turmeric powder, salt in the end.
When the mix ingredients have all cooled well, grind to a slightly coarse powder , including tamrind, desiccated coconut, sesame seeds , curry leaves.
Remove the powder , keep aside.
In a small pan ,add some oil around 1 tsp , , heat it, add the mustard seeds, let it crackle, add the split udad dal,chana dal and when they turn golden remove.
Roast the peanuts, cashewnuts if adding them.
Let all these tempering ingredients also cool well.
Now mix all the tamrind mix and tempering ingredients well.
Store in a cool dry bottle.
Your Instant tamrind rice powder is ready.
To prepare the tamrind rice.
Heat a pan, add a tsp of sesame oil , add the required quantity of the mix, add some cooked rice, mix well.
Remove and enjoy with papad.
NOTE...Adding desiccated cococnut/ kopra is purely optional. Some store brands also include this in their reciepe.
A pinch of sugar is also added in some recipes, I do not add it. It is optional.