Puliyodarai Powder (Spice powder for tamarind rice)

Srilatha Basics, South Indian Leave a Comment

This powder is the secret ‘sauce’ for the famous Iyengar puliyodarai. Puliyodarai, or pulihora is a rice that is made with a tamarind gravy and is a popular travel and picnic food. It’s tangy, spicy and just good! This powder (podi as we call in Tamil) is made with a few spices that are so flavorful, and lift the ordinary tamarind rice made with just the tamarind gravy to the next level. It’s the signature dish sold in the famous Parthasarathy temple in Chennai, which is where Raj took me on most of our dates pre-marriage! Look for two more posts on making the whole puliyodarai.

Print Recipe
Puliyodarai Powder (Spice powder for tamarind rice)
Cook Time 10-15 minutes
Passive Time 10 mins - to cool
Servings
cups of rice
Ingredients
  • 1 tsp Cooking oil Any oil other than extra virgin olive oil is good. I typically use avocado oil or sesame oil
  • 1/2 cup Chana dhal Bengal gram
  • 1/4 cup White split/whole urad dhal Skinned split/whole black gram
  • 1/2 cup White sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp Fenugreek seeds
  • 1/4 cup curry leaves, washed and dried
  • 15 numbers Dry red chilies Use the hot variety, not the Byadage which is used for color only
  • 1/3 cup Coriander seeds
  • 1 big sprig Curry leaves optional; i typically fry and add curry leaves to most podis to add flavor
Cook Time 10-15 minutes
Passive Time 10 mins - to cool
Servings
cups of rice
Ingredients
  • 1 tsp Cooking oil Any oil other than extra virgin olive oil is good. I typically use avocado oil or sesame oil
  • 1/2 cup Chana dhal Bengal gram
  • 1/4 cup White split/whole urad dhal Skinned split/whole black gram
  • 1/2 cup White sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp Fenugreek seeds
  • 1/4 cup curry leaves, washed and dried
  • 15 numbers Dry red chilies Use the hot variety, not the Byadage which is used for color only
  • 1/3 cup Coriander seeds
  • 1 big sprig Curry leaves optional; i typically fry and add curry leaves to most podis to add flavor
Instructions
  1. Heat a medium sized curved pan/kadai/karahi/vanali
  2. When fairly hot, add the fenugreek seeds and fry until slightly reddish; Take care not to burn it or it'll taste bitter; remove to a plate
  3. Add sesame seeds to the hot pan, and let them pop; fry for a couple of minutes, without burning; remove to the same plate
  4. Now add the oil, and add the dals, coriander seeds and fry them until the dhals turn a golden color; remove to the plate
  5. Turn the heat off, add the red chilies and fry them so they get a sheen, and a polished look; take care not to burn
  6. Add the curry leaves and fry them with the red chilies in the same pan, with the remaining heat until they crackle and become dry
  7. Let all the ingredients completely cool
  8. Add the chilies to a blender first and powder them
  9. Add all the other ingredients one by one, and blend it all together, to a dry slightly coarse powder
  10. Transfer to a clean glass container.
Recipe Notes

This powder will remain fresh for up to a month in the refrigerator, and for a couple of weeks at room temperature;
Used as a final seasoning for dry curries, but most importantly as a finishing touch for authentic Iyengar puliyodarai.

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