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5 from 1 vote


A recipe for the best Puliyodharai made in Amma's kitchen.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Main
Cuisine: South Indian, Tamil
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword: Puliyodharai
Servings: 8
Calories: 116kcal


For the tamarind sauce (pulikkachal)

  • A lemon size ball of tamarind pods , soaked in about 4 cups of water. When the tamarind softens, crush it with your fingers to extract all the juice, and discard the solids.
  • 2 red chili peppers
  • 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  • 1 tablespoon chana dal (bengal gram)
  • 1 tablespoon udad dal (black gram)
  • 2 tablespoon peanuts
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • A generous pinch of asafetida (hing)
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric

For assembling the puliyodharai

  • 2 cups cooked white rice (or brown rice)
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 3 tbsp prepared tamarind sauce (pulikkachal)
  • 2 tablespoon peanuts
  • 1 sprig curry leaves


Make the tamarind sauce

  • Dry-roast the fenugreek seeds until they darken slightly to a reddish hue.
  • In a tiny bit of oil, fry the red chilies. Remove, and use a paper towel to absorb the excess oil.
  • In a spice grinder, powder the fenugreek and chili peppers along with about ½ teaspoon of salt. Set aside.
  • Heat remaining oil and add the mustard, asafetida, chilies, chana dal and urad dal. Fry for a minute, then add the peanuts.
  • Once the peanuts start browning, add the tamarind sauce, the chili-fenugreek powder, and check seasoning. Add more salt if needed.
  • Let the tamarind sauce reduce on a low flame until it has thickened to a consistency almost like that of molasses (it'll even look a little like molasses with the dals and peanuts suspended in it, but won't be as sticky)
  • This sauce will store for weeks if kept in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

Assemble the puliyodharai

  • Heat the oil and add the mustard seeds. When the crackle, add the curry leaves and peanuts and fry until the peanuts turn pale brown.
  • Add the peanuts, mustard and curry leaves to the rice along with the tamarind sauce. Mix thoroughly. Add more tamarind sauce if you need.


Calories: 116kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 2mg | Potassium: 63mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 43IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 17mg | Iron: 1mg