Tamarind rice

Tamarind rice/Puli Saadam/Pulihara recipe

Puli Saadam (Pulihara/Tamarind rice ) is a favorite dish in our house as it is easy to make and tastes yummy too. My mom used to pack tasty pulihara with potato chips for picnic lunches and for travel by train. I enjoyed it a lot and this dish always reminds me of our lovely childhood.

Recently, a friend of mine said that she loves this rice but does not know the recipe. So, here it is for you, Kanni 🙂

Below is a simple recipe to make this variety rice. This cannot fail even beginners, so dig  in and have fun.

puli kozhambu

Cook 1 cup of rice in a pressure cooker and set it aside.

Pour a little less water for cooking than usual. This will keep the rice grainy and look good for this dish. I cooked 1 cup of rice with 2 cups of water instead of 2 and half.

Ingredients (for gravy):

  1. Tamarind – fist sized ball
  2. Fenugreek seeds (methi/vendhayam/menthulu) – 1 tbsp
  3. Cumin seeds (Jeera) – 1 tbsp
  4. Red Chillies – 3 (You can even use green chillies)
  5. Groundnuts – a handful (optional)
  6. Chana Dal – 1 tbsp
  7. Mustard seeds – 1 tbsp
  8. Salt – as needed
  9. Cooking Oil – 4 tbsp
Jeera and Methi fried
Cumin and fenugreek seeds – dry roasted


  • Soak tamarind for half an hour in lukewarm water. Then extract the tamarind essence by squeezing and filtering out the pulp.
  • In a small pan fry the cumin seeds and fenugreek seeds for about a minute. Do not use oil for this.
  • After the seeds cool, grind them to a fine powder and set aside.
  • Heat a kadai (deep-bottomed pan) and add the oil to it. Once the oil heats up, add mustard seeds, chana dal and red chillies to the pan and fry them for a minute. Fry the ground nuts too.
  • Add the tamarind essence and salt to the pan and let it boil on medium flame till you see oil at the sides of the pan. (About 7 to 10 minutes).
  • At the end, add the cumin, fenugreek powder and stir for a few seconds. A nice aroma would come at this point.
  • Let the gravy boil for a few more minutes and switch off the stove.
  • Now the gravy is ready. The tamarind gravy stays well for even 3 days at room temperature.
  • Mix it with the already cooked rice to prepare tamarind rice.
Tamarind rice
  • Have papad (fryums) or potato chips with the rice and enjoy.

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About Priyadarshini Rajendran 97 Articles
Priyadarshini Rajendran is a travel enthusiast, avid reader and a passionate writer. She has a few of her books published with more in the pipeline. Before becoming a full-time writer, she worked as a software consultant taking breaks for her travels.

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