Gravy side-dishes / Kootu/South-Indian dal with veggies

Celebrating 1,000 hits with unusual Papaya kadhi/mor-kuzhambu

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I’m feeling quite indulgent today. Well, I have been indulgent these past few days, but it has gone up a notch or two since late yesterday night (rather early this morning technically, since it was past midnight) after I realised the bog’s crossed 1,000 hits (cumulatively, not daily, lets not get too greedy yet!). It has taken me 25 posts to get there, so it has been a slow journey but I’d rather be the tortoise that steadily completes the race!

So, that was one reason for being indulgent. Incidentally, I celebrated crossing this little hillock by flavouring my usual oats and honey kanji (porridge) with cocoa powder. How indulgent is that! As to why the last few days have been indulgent, we’ve wedding-hopping the entire weekend and have had wonderful and wonderfully-heavy meals at all places.

The icing on the cake, however, was dinner yesterday at an Italian restaurant. Too tired to think of cooking, we decided (happily for me) to eat out with a few friends at a restaurant close to the beach (Bella Ciao at Thiruvanmiyur, Chennai). It was an open air restaurant with lovely food, my first visit to the place.

I’ve been on an Italian overdrive in the last fortnight, having eaten and prepared bruschettas a few times and pasta just a couple of days ago. But that did not deter me from ordering the same yesterday! So we (there were 7 of us) had focaccia bread (looks and tastes somewhat like tandoori roti) with Verdure Grigliate (grilled zucchini, peppers and onions, topped with garlic, parsley and olive oil) for starters.

Main course was farfalle alla checca (bow-tie pasta with fresh tomatoes, kalamata olives (I love them!), basil, capers, mozzarella cheese and olive oil) and two pizzas, one with sundried tomatoes (I love them even more!), onions and black olives, and the other with capsicum, onions and olives.

Then came desserts — chocolate mousse, lemon tart (tarta al limone) and tiramisu (an Italian cream and cheese dessert that is flavoured with coffee and topped with cocoa powder).

The laziness of staying away from the kitchen continued today too since my friend Viji packed up a nice big container of raw Papaya mor-kuzhambu (yes papaya!). Mor-kuzhambu is a south-Indian style of ‘kadhi’. It is basically a curd-based mild curry that can be made with or without vegetables. In the vegetable version, pumpkin or squash/gourd varieties are usually used.

Raw papaya kadhi/mor-kuzhambu


Raw papaya (grated) – 1.5 cups

Thick sour buttermilk – 2 cups

Toor dal (thuvaram paruppu/split pigeon peas) – 2 tsp

Red chilli – 1 (soaked in a tsp of water along with toor dal for 20-30 mins)

Green chillies – 4

Fenugreek seeds (vendhayam/meethi dana) – ½ tsp

Ginger – ¼ inch piece

Jeera – ½ tsp

Coconut – 3 tbsp

Oil – 1 tbsp + 1 tsp

Mustard seeds – 1 tsp

Chopped coriander – 1 tsp



Heat 1 tbsp oil. Add fenugreek seeds

When they turn light golden, add green chillies and sauté for 30 seconds.

Remove chillies and seeds and keep aside

Sauté grated raw papaya and salt in the same oil till well cooked

Grind together to a fine paste: soaked red chilli and dal, green chillies, ginger, jeera, coconut and popped fenugreek seeds and green chillies

Mix this paste with the sour buttermilk and beat well

Place on medium heat and boil till a cap is formed (the way it does for milk)

Note: The heat should neither be too high nor too low otherwise the buttermilk may break

Add cooked papaya. Mix well

Heat 1 tsp of oil and pop mustard seeds. Pour over mor-kuzhambu/kadhi

Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve


6 thoughts on “Celebrating 1,000 hits with unusual Papaya kadhi/mor-kuzhambu

  1. nandz d other day u i spoke to garema n we discussed abt ur wonderful blogs, mast life post marriage and ur makeover from nandini to nanzO !! not to miss italian food n regular outings !! good to see u happy !! n kudos to room to keep my friend in good spirits always…btw u need to tell me y u r not taking up a job..over phone..not here…m waiting to resume work full day from next month…give me ideas for akshat’s bday celebration (low-key affair with just 4-5 families) !!

    • Haha! transformation indeed!!! And who told u am not working? I’m just not working full time. I have enough assignments right now that keep me engaged for the major part of the day and decent time for me to cook and update the blog regularly! what more can i ask for 🙂

      • hey i dint mean to offend u..just wonderin y my dear frend is not workin full time..i know of all d adventures dat occupy u daily….u have a happening life unlike mine !! sighj 😦

  2. Pingback: Poornam Sevai (Rice Noodles with Lentil Crumble) « foodiliciousnan

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