With this post I’m going back to the kitchen-basics of Karnataka cuisine. When I got married into a Kannadiga family, I had no idea about their style of cooking. I was just aware of the names of a few classic preparations from Karnataka and knew nothing beyond that. Whatever I know today of this cuisine, it’s through my MIL and her teachings. She has been my mentor from the day one of my marriage, teaching me recipes right from the basics to the more trickier ones.
Whatever she cooked, I would note down in my diary and then try them later. I realised that three basic spice mixes are always kept ready to be used in various preparations, Saaru/ rasam pudi, Palyada/curry Pudi and Huli/Sambar Pudi. For me to understand and obviously note down the recipes, my MIL demonstrated all the three and I religiously noted down all of them. Ever since then I have never asked her to make the spice mixes for me. I make them regularly at home in small quantities, as I believe that the spice mixes lose their aroma and flavour on storing them for a long time.
This curry mix or palyada pudi is used for making curries. This can also be used for making bhaath, like the Vaangi bhaath or Cabbage bhaath. In the absence of Gojju Podi, this spice mix can also be used.
The spice mix needs very few ingredients to make and is extremely aromatic. The quantity of chillies can be varied if one likes it less spicy, keeping all the other ingredients in the same ratio. It is quite easy to make and is ready within an hour. One has to take precaution that the ingredients are roasted lightly and not burnt during the process, else it will spoil the flavour.
Since the spice mix is gluten free, I’m sending it to my event ‘ONLY’ Gluten Free cooking, hosted here through this month.
Preparation Time:15mins | Roasting Time:15mins | Makes : about 2cups | Difficulty Level: Easy
Ingredients (in the order of use)
4big cinnamon sticks/dalchini
1/2cup Bengalgram/ Chana daal
1/2cup skinned black lentil/ Urad daal
1/2cup coriander seeds
1cup grated dry coconut
about 2cups red chillies (add less for a less spicy mix)
Heat oil in a pan and add cloves and cinnamon. Keep the flame low and let the aromatic oils from the spices diffuse into the oil.
Add both the lentils and on a medium flame roast till a golden hue is seen on them.
Add the coriander seeds and roast for a few minutes (I added them later as I forgot to add them).
Add the coconut and red chillies and roast on a low flame for 2-3mins. I added coriander seeds at this stage and roasted for the entire mix for 3-4mins but it’s should be added earlier.
Cool the spice mix and separate the chillies and cinnamon sticks.
Grind first the sticks and chillies to a fine powder and then add the remaining content and grind.
Store in an air tight container. This mix stays good for 4-5months and even more depending on the climate.