Thursday, May 26, 2011

Vendakka(Ladies finger) pachadi

Kerala Iyers(KI), often called Palakkad Iyers(PI) even though many of us live in parts of Kerala other than Palakkad, are a community that migrated to Kerala from different parts of Tamilnadu centuries ago. They have made Kerala their home and have come up with a cuisine that incorporates the best of two worlds - Tamil cooking and Kerala cooking and have also come up with some dishes that are unique to KI cooking. You will be hard put to find some of the KI dishes in either Tamil/Kerala cooking. This vendakka pachadi is one such dish that is a unique legacy of the Kerala Iyers.
Unlike the connotation that the term pachadi has, of being an accompaniment, this pachadi is a full fledged side dish/gravy which you pour onto rice, mix and eat. It is a combination of three different tastes - sour, sweet and mildly spicy.
This, with some mangakari and papadam on the side makes a wonderfully satisfying meal.

What you need:
Vendakka/ladies finger/okra - 10- 12 medium sized ones, washed and dried on a towel
Tamarind extract - from a lemon sized ball soaked in 2 cups of water
Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
Jaggery - 1/2 tsp grated
Grind together to a smooth paste:
Grated coconut - 3/4 cup
Green chillies - 3 or 4
Mustard seeds - 3/4 tsp
Water - enough for grinding to a thick paste
Make a smooth paste with:
Rice flour - 1 tsp
Water - 1/4 cup
For tempering:
Coconut oil - 1 tsp
Red chilli - 1 or 2, broken into pieces
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Broken urad dal - 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves - a few

Slice the ladies finger into one inch pieces. In a large pan, take the ladies finger, tamarind extract, turmeric powder and salt. Bring to a boil and then let it simmer until the ladies finger is well cooked. Add the ground paste and jaggery. Let it boil for about 5-8 minutes until the raw smell is gone.
Add the rice flour paste and heat for a minute. This paste helps to bring all the ingredients together and to slightly thicken the curry.
Heat all the ingredients for tempering and once the mustard seeds pop, pour it over the curry.
Note : Instead of using rice flour paste, you can add a teaspoon of rice and grind it along with the other ingredients for the ground paste.

Check out the Blogging Marathoners doing BM#5 along with me  Curry in a hurry under 30 min: Aarthi, Divya, Me, Kaveri, Pavani,Seven Days of Indian Sweets:Gayathri, Priya Suresh,Seven Days of Microwave Meals: Monika,Seven Days of Regional Specials:Harini, Vaishali, Suma, PJ Seven Days of Colorful Dishes Kid's Special: KalyaniSummer Coolers: Jayasree, Kamalika, Srivalli


Priti said...

Looks yum ..never made bindi this way

lata raja said...

I was looking for this dish, the very PI style unlike what we make with deep frying vendakka and dropping in the yoghurt with ground spices. I am making this, this very morning. Thank you for the recipe!

vaishali sabnani said...

I am really fond of Okra..a good recipe adds to my collection!

Priya said...

Never tried pachadi this way, full of flavours,thanks for sharing..

Divya.M said...

i heard of it and my mom used to prepare it.... but not tasted....ur recipe is looking so good.... will try once...

notyet100 said...

curry looks delicious,

Ms.Chitchat said...

Perfect vendakka pachadi, I make this very often as an accompaniment to molagootal, thanks for sharing.

jayasree said...

Typical PI dish. I usually add raw rice or flour along with the grinding ingredients.(Read lazy to make the paste).

Aarthi said...


Harini said...

sounds very flavorful!

Vimitha Anand said...

Yummy looking curry...

Suma Gandlur said...

Looks delicious. I was expecting to see a chutney recipe. :)

Krithi's Kitchen said...

Lovely and creamy dish.. gotta try soon..
Event: Serve It-Chilled

Pavani said...

Such a traditional dish. Looks yummy.

kaveri said...

Love puli pachadis anyday. best combos with molagootal..vendakka pachadi looks delicious