DH loves hotel style kara kuzhambu and would take extra serving whenever prepared at home. In the early years of marriage, I have never prepared this kuzhambu as mom does not make this type at my home. When I first tasted in a restaurant in Chennai, DH asked me as to why am not trying different variations like that. Then, I gathered the recipe with the chef available there who was courteous enough to share the recipe. Later, when we visited DH village next time, I got kara kuzhambu recipe from my co-sister. As always, I alter the recipes slightly to suite our family taste. The recipe is a combined version of the recipes shared by chef and co-sister.
Cowpeas - 1 cup
Small onions (shallots) - 1 cup
Tomato - 2
Drumstick - cut in 2 inch length - few
Tamarind extract - 2 cups
Sambar Powder - 3 tsp
Salt - to taste
Sautéed small onion and tomato - 2 tsp
Coconut - 3 tsp
Saunf/fennel seeds - 1/4 tsp
Mustard seeds - few
Fenugreek - 1 tsp
Red chillies -2-3
Curry leaves - few
1. Pressure cook cow peas with little water and salt. Make sure it is cooked rightly and not mushy.
2. Extract tamarind water from the soaked tamarind pulp and keep aside.
3. In a kadai, add little oil, add the tempering items one by one, add small onion and tomato. Saute until the tomatoes turned mushy. Take smaller portion from the mixture and keep aside for grinding.
4. Add drumstick pieces, sambar powder, and salt and mix well.
5. Add the extract tamarind water to the mixture. Mix well and transfer to a vessel and let this boil for sometime.
6. Meanwhile, grind the sauted onion-tomato mixture along with coconut and fennel seeds.
7. Once the drumstick pieces have cooked, add the ground mixture, and blend well. Let this boil for 3 minutes.
8. Finally, add the cooked cow peas and let this boil for 5 minutes. Switch off the stove.
9. This kuzhambu thickens with time and tastes awesome with more settling time.
10. We had with drumstick leaves poriyal and potato fry which made the meal enjoyable and fulfilled.