Poondu Kuzhambu

Poondu Kuzhambu is a yummy preparation of garlic simmered in a spicy tamarind sauce. It is best served over hot rice. The benefits of garlic have just now reached the New World, so much so that garlic is now available as pills, in the Vitamins section of every pharmacy in America. Why eat a pill, when it tastes so yummy when cooked, and can be used in so many different culinary applications? Almost all the ancient cuisines of the world, acknowledge the benefits of using garlic and use them profoundly. Indian cuisine and Tamil cuisine is no exception.

Garlic can be used as a medicine for almost all ailments you can think of: it is antiseptic, antiviral, antibacterial, reduces cholesterol, treats common cold and cough, regulates blood pressure, helps regulate insulin levels and even is believed to have effects on AIDS patients. My mom always asks me to chew on a small clove of garlic(raw) with 1/2 tsp of cumin and a pinch of salt, whenever I have tummy trouble or bloating. Gulp it down with a glass of warm water and its like magic. To learn more about the benefits of garlic and home remedy for cold, click here.

This Poondu Kuzhambu recipe comes from my best friends: Kiri and Karthi. Food always tastes better when shared with good friends, and I am thankful that I have a lot of passionate foodies to be my friends.


Garlic – 15 pods, peeled whole

Shallots -10, peeled whole

Tomato – 1, chopped

Coriander powder – 5 teaspoon

Sambar powder (kuzhambu milagai thool)- 2 1/2 teaspoon

Turmeric powder -1/2 teaspoon

Tamarind Paste – 1 table spoon

Water – 5-6 cups

Gingelly oil- 3 table spoon

Salt to taste


Mustard seeds-1 teaspoon

Fenugreek seeds-1/2 teaspoon

Curry leaves – one sprig


Mix tamarind paste in water in a bowl and add coriander powder, sambar powder,turmeric powder and salt and set aside for15-20 minutes. Meanwhile, heat oil in a kadai over medium heat and add mustard seeds. When it splutters add fenugreek and curry leaves. Make sure you don’t let the fenugreek burn or else the whole kuzhambu will taste bitter. Now, add shallots and fryfor 2 mins. Add garlic and fry until it turns little crispy. Then add tomatoes and fry until soft and pulpy.  Add the tamarindwater mix and allow it to boil until it reduces to half its volume, thickens and oil floats to the top.

Serve hot with rice and pappad!

I am sure it tasted awesome, will let Karthi n Kiri comment on the verdict.I am sure to try this recipe very soon, and will post pictures when I do. Thanks you guys!

Pin ItFollow Me on Pinterest

  1. Krithi Karthi

    We went out on the Saturday evening and came home hungry for something quick to cook at the same time spicy. Immediately thought of this one since it was easy to prepare.
    It tasted divine.

Leave a Reply