Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Curry Leaves Thokku - Kariveppilai Thokku

In India we don't have to buy curry leaves. We used to get them as compliment when we buy vegetables from the vegetable shops. They are one of the essential ingredients in South Indian cooking, especially for tempering. They are high in Vitamin A, good for the digestive system, controls hair loss etc. etc. But most of the times we just corner them rather than consuming. Few days back when I had a whole bunch of curry leaves in hand I thought of making thokku out of it, just to replace pickles for VJ's lunch box. And it tasted just awesome with curd rice. And here is the recipe.


Curry leaves - 1 cup, tightly packed
Red chilli powder - 1 tsp, adjust as per taste
Tamarind - small gooseberry sized ball, soaked and extracted
Fenugreek powder - 1 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Salt and hing - as needed


Dry roast the fenugreek/methi seeds, allow to cool and powder it. You can also do it in large quantity and store for using in pickles and thokku.

Wash the curry leaves well and grind it to a smooth paste adding little water if necessary.

Heat oil in a pan, add the mustard seeds. When the mustards splutter add a dash of hing and then add the ground curry leaves paste. Cook for few minutes, stirring occasionally.

Then add the tamarind extract, salt and chilli powder.  Cook until the raw smell goes off and the oil starts leaving the sides. Finally add a tsp of fenugreek powder, mix it well and switch off the flame.

Allow to cool down and transfer to an airtight container or bottle. Can be refrigerated and used. Also it stays fresh upto a week in room temperature if handled carefully. I would say curd rice is the best combination. But, can also be consumed along with idly, dosa or chapati. You can also mix this with plain rice along with a tsp of sesame oil. Tastes too good.

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