There cannot be a single Tambrahm who doesn’t like Mendhi / Vendhaya Kuzhambu.There are various variations to Mendhi Kuzhambu/Vendhya kuzhambu and Manathakkalli(Dried Sun berries) is one such variation , its actually a herb that is used to cure mouth ulcers and problems related to digestive system. It is bitter in taste and looks like a cherry , it belongs to the berry family . For cooking purpose it is sun-dried and stashed in a dry air tight container or Zippouch.
|Cooked rice||3 cups|
|Manathakkalli(dried sun berries)||3 tbsps|
|Sesame oil||4 tbsps|
|Mustard seeds and asafoetida pellet||1 tsp , 1 pellet|
|Dry red chillies||5-6|
|Fenugreek / methi||2 tsps|
|Urad dal and channa dal||2 tsps|
|Tamarind extract||250 ml|
|Crystal salt||As required to your taste|
|Kuzhambu podi||4 tbsps|
|Rice flour||1 tbsps|
To make the kuzhambu
- Soak the tamarind(about a small gooseberry sized) in water. or you can slightly warm the water and soak it , so that it becomes quicker and easier to take the extract. If you want you can use ready made tamarind paste and dilute it in 250ml of water. But for authenticity I suggest you soak the tamarind and take out the extract.
- Take a heavy bottomed kadaai / utensil in medium high heat and add 3 tbsp of sesame seed oil. Now , you can use any cooking oil of your choice , but the traditional recipe uses sesame seed oil.
- After the oil heats temper with a pellet of solidified asafoetida/hing also known as “Katti perungaayam” this type of hing gives better flavor and dissolves easily or you can use powdered hing too , mustard seeds, manathakkalli , dry red chillies (make sure you break them into two and splutter the seeds , it gives extra flavor and spice) curry leaves ,fenugreek seeds , channa dal and urad dal.
- Once the browning of dals start add in the first extract of the tamarind. make sure you pour only the liquid and not the rinds. add another 100 ml of water to the tamarind and again extract it and pour it in , the quantity of tamarind used in this recipe can only give 2 extracts. After this add about 150-200 ml of plain water to the liquid in the kadaai. Add salt at this stage.
- Once the liquid starts boiling and the raw smell goes add a pinch of turmeric and red chilli powder for colour(optional) , 4 tbsp of Kuzhambu podi.
- Let it boil in medium high heat for about 15 minutes. Check its consistency.If it has a runny consistency , in 2 tbsp of water add 1 tbsp of rice flour ( if you touch the rice flour it should feel rough and not smooth , do not confuse it with All purpose flour/Maida). and pour this mixture into the Kuzhambu and allow it to boil for another 5 minutes.
To make the kalandha saadham
- Take 1 cup of raw rice and blitz it in a mixer to almost like rava.
- cook this rice in the regular method (1:3 ratio , i.e , 1 cup rice 3 cups water) in a cooker or pressure cooker.
- The cooked rice should be mushy and not separated.
- From the 6th step from above , once the kuzhmabu reaches the required consistency (i.e not too runny and not too thick it should be syrupy in consistency). Add the cooked rice to this and mix it thorughly without forming any lumps.
- Drizzle little bit of sesame oil(about 1 tbsp) over this.
- Take it off the heat and transfer it to serving dish.
- Two excellent accompaniments with this dish is South Indian Potato Roast and Daangal Pachadi.
If you want you can add a small piece or a tbsp of jaggery while the kuzhambu is boiling. I personally don’t like it , hence I haven’t added it in the recipe.
First get the rice ready . while it is cooking half way , you can start off with making the kuzhambu.