Vendaikkai Puli Kootu

Puli Kootu….the first time I had this dish was when one of my friends’ mom who was visiting from India made this. It tastes the same as a puli kuzhambu, only thicker, and the advantage is, it is chock full of veggies. It is thicker than a kuzhambu and is meant to be eaten as a side dish. Okra is a veggie that works best in this pulikootu, coss the natural slime from the okra thickens this stew beautifully.

20 okra pods, cut into 1 inch slices
1 red onion, chopped fine
4 garlic cloves, sliced
1 tomato chopped fine
1/4 cup thick tamarind extract or 2 tbsp tamarind paste
1 tbsp gingelly oil
1/2 tsp mustard
1/2 tsp fenugreek
3 whole red chillies, broken
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp chilli powder
a sprig curry leaves
salt to taste

Heat the gingelly oil in a wide pan over medium high heat. Add the mustard and fenugreek seeds. Let it splutter and fry. Add the broken red chillies and curry leaves. Add the chopped onion, garlic and turmeric powder. Saute until soft. Add the tomatoes and salt, saute until pulpy. Add the sliced okra and saute for a couple of minutes. Add the chilly powder and tamarind paste/pulp. Cover the pan and let cook until the kootu thickens and the okra is cooked. Serve hot with rice.

Verdict: Spicy and tangy, this kootu is traditionally served with rice and tadka dal. The creamy dal with rice goes really well with this kootu.

Sending this to ‘Side Dishes from India‘ Event. Also to ‘Veggie/Fruit of the Month – Okra’ Event.

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