For You Recipes

Tasting Tradition: Soulful South Indian Recipes

The rest of India ought to know that, South of India is not a single mass of land, but in fact include states like Karnataka, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Tamil Nadu. These states have their own individual language and many dialects that are as different as chalk and cheese.

Most importantly, South Indian cuisine is far beyond just Sambhar, Idly, Dosa or filter coffee! Each state has its own distinct cuisine, that varies according to the local produce available in that land.

To explore the cuisines of each state in depth, a visit to the land would be needed. But until then, here are some unique South Indian recipes from the respective states that you can try!

Karnataka

Ragi Mudde and Bassaru

This combination of Ragi mudde or steamed ragi balls along with a Dill leaves coconut-based rasam are a match made in heaven. They are healthy, nutritious, and perfect for those following a vegetarian or vegan diet. Here is how to make it.

Ragi Mudde

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 15 minutes
  • Serves: 4 people

Ingredients:

  • Ragi flour: ½ cup + 1 tablespoon
  • Oil: 1/2 teaspoon
  • Salt: to taste
  • Water: 1 cup + 3 tablespoon

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Procedure:

  1. To start, pour 1 cup of water into a deep vessel. Add salt and 1/2 tsp oil then stir and bring the water to a boil.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine 1 tbsp of ragi flour with 3 tbsps of water. Mix well to create a smooth ragi water mixture.
  3. Once the water in the pot is boiling, add the ragi water and stir continuously for 2 minutes to prevent any lumps from forming. Bring the mixture to a boil again.
  4. Next, spread 1 cup of ragi flour into the boiling water. Be sure to distribute the flour evenly and avoid creating lumps. Boil for 1 minute without disturbing the mixture, allowing the ragi flour to absorb as much water as possible.
  5. Using a wooden stick or spatula, gently push the flour into the water to break up any lumps.
  6. Keep the flame on low and mix continuously in one direction until the entire flour is well mixed with the water, and a smooth and soft dough is formed.
  7. Cover and boil for another minute, ensuring that the ragi is cooked thoroughly. Mix again and check if the ragi is completely cooked.
  8. Divide the dough and transfer a ball onto a greased plate. Finally, serve the ragi mudde with bassaru.

Bassaru

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 45 minutes
  • Serves: 4 people

Ingredients:

  • Toor Dal: 1 cup
  • Dill Leaves: ½ cup

For Paste:

  • Roasted Poppy Seeds: 2 tablespoons
  • Black Peppercorns: 1 tablespoon
  • Onion: 1 (chopped)
  • Red Chillies: 4 pc
  • Fresh Coconut: 4 tablespoons (grated)

For Tempering:

  • Garlic: 4-5 cloves
  • Mustard Seeds: ½ spoon
  • Dill Leaves: Chopped (for garnishing)

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Process:

  1. Boil the toor dal in a pressure cooker till fully cooked. Once cooled, add the chopped dill leaves, salt and water and cook for another whistle.
  2. Once the mixture is fully cooked, empty the contents into a pan for further cooking.
  3. Use a mixer jar and make a fine paste adding, roasted poppy seeds, black peppercorns, onions, red chillies and fresh coconut.
  4. Add this fine paste to the dal mixture, stir well and let it cook together on low flame for about 20 minutes or so.
  5. Now for the tempering, take a tempering pan, add some oil and heat on low flame. Add the garlic cloves till they get a golden hue. Now add the mustard seeds and wait until they splutter.
  6. Now add the tempering to the cooked mixture. Garnish with dill leaves and serve with ragi mudde or steamed rice.

Tamil Nadu

Mambazha Sambar

This sambar recipe made out of ripe mangoes is a treat for your taste buds. A sweet and tangy sambar originated from Tamil Nadu. It is best served with rawa upma or even steamed rice.

  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 25 minutes
  • Serves: 5 people

Ingredients:

  • Toor Dal: ½ cup
  • Tamarind: 1 spoon size
  • Sambar Powder: 1 teaspoon
  • Turmeric powder: ¼ spoon
  • Ripe Mangoes: 5-6 small size
  • Salt: to taste

For Tempering:

  • Oil: 2 teaspoons
  • Mustard seeds: ½ spoon
  • Fenugreek seeds: ½ spoon
  • Asafoetida: a pinch
  • Sambar onions: 4-5 pieces
  • Curry leaves: 4-5 leaves

Procedure:

  1. Pressure cook the toor dal with turmeric and a pinch of salt until it is soft and fully cooked.
  2. In a bowl mix the tamarind with water and squeeze it well to get the thick juice out. Dilute the juice to make about 3 cups of tamarind water.
  3. Take a heavy bottom pan and boil the tamarind water along with the sambar powder, salt and turmeric powder. To this add washed and cut halves of ripe mangoes. Cover with a lid and cook until the mangoes turn soft and mushy.
  4. Now add the cooked toor dal to this mixture and stir gently, taking care not to spoil the integrity of the mangoes.
  5. To temper the sambar, take a tempering pan, add fenugreek seeds, and mustard seeds, when they start to pop, add the sambar onions cut into halves or smaller pieces. Add the asafoetida and curry leaves. Once everything as sizzled, add it to the sambar.
  6. Cook for a few minutes and serve hot.

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Andhra Pradesh

Shikampuri Kebab

This delectable chicken kebab is a speciality of Hyderabad. It is a unique blend of dal and chicken with a filling of yogurt. Fried to crispy perfection, this kebab is one of a kind!

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 40 Minutes
  • Serves: 4 people

Ingredients:

For Filling:

  • Yoghurt: ½ cup (plain)
  • Onions: 2 (finely chopped)
  • Green Chillies: 4 (finely chopped)
  • Coriander: 2 spoonfuls (Finely chopped)
  • Mint Leaves: 4-5
  • Salt: to taste

For Kebab:

  • Chicken: 500gm (boneless)
  • Chana Dal: ½ cup (soaked)
  • Red chilli powder: 1 teaspoon
  • Turmeric powder: ½ teaspoon
  • Ginger garlic paste: 2 spoons
  • Cardamom: 2
  • Cinnamon: 1-inch stick
  • Cloves: 4
  • Black peppercorns: 4
  • Ajwain: 1 spoon
  • Egg:  whole (beaten)
  • Oil: to fry
  • Salt: to taste

Get ingredients here

Procedure:

  1. Take a pot with 2-3 cups of water, to it add the chicken, chana dal, and all the whole spices along with ginger garlic paste, red chillies and turmeric. Cook this mixture till the chicken is well cooked and the chana dal has softened.
  2. Once cooked, drain the mixture and cool it and grind it to form a fine paste. To this, add the beaten egg and mint and coriander and mix well.
  3. For the filling, add all the ingredients for the filling like yoghurt, onions, mint leaves, coriander and salt in a bowl and mix well.
  4. Take a small scoop of the chicken mixture and flatten it on your greased palm to make a flat disc. To this add a small portion of the yoghurt mix and cover the chicken layer from all sides. Slightly flatten the ball to get a kebab-like shape. Take care not to spill the yoghurt mixture out of the kebab.
  5. Heat a shallow frying pan with a sufficient quantity of oil. Fry the kebabs on medium flame until they are crispy and golden brown in colour. Remove on a dry napkin to soak the excess oil.
  6. Serve hot with mint chutney.

Kerala

Chatti Pathiri (Sweet Version)

This is a sweet delicacy which is well known in the Malabar region of Kerala. It consists of sweet crepes with stuffing that is cooked in a casserole.

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 65 minutes
  • Serves: 6 people

Ingredients:

For Crepes:

  • Maida: 2 cups
  • Egg: 1
  • Salt: 1 pinch
  • Water: 2.5 cups

For Stuffing:

  • Cashews: /3 cup
  • Raisins: 1/3 cup
  • Poppy seeds: 3 teaspoons
  • Sugar: 3 spoons

For Binding:

  • Eggs: 6
  • Cardamom powder: 2 spoons
  • Ghee: 1/3 cup
  • Sugar: 2/3 cups

Get ingredients here

Procedure:

  1. For the crepes, add all the dry ingredients and slowly add water and keep stirring to avoid any lump formation. Make a dosa batter-like consistency for the crepes.
  2. On a hot non-stick or dosa pan, spread the crepe batter like a dosa and cook on both sides. The crepes are ready when the batter is just cooked and not until it turns brown.
  3. Make the pathiris or crepes with the remaining batter. Take care to ensure the size of the pathiris is small enough to fit inside the casserole.
  4. Take a mixing bowl add the eggs, sugar and cardamom powder, and whisk gently to form a smooth consistency.
  5. Take a heavy-bottom casserole and heat the ghee in it. Reduce the flame and insert one pathiri inside the casserole. On this layer add the egg mixture and top it with raisins and cashews. Repeat the same procedure till all the pathiris are used up.
  6. Tightly close the casserole lid and cook on a slow flame for 40 minutes. Once cooked, flip the casserole on a serving dish to expose the innermost brownish pathiri.
  7. Cut them into slices with a thickness of your choice and serve.

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