Puliyodharai recipe
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Puliyodharai is a spicy tamarind-based rice recipe from Southern India, often made during festivals and offered as prasad in temples.
Recipe type: Rice
Cuisine: Indian
Serves: 4-5
  • Long-grained rice - 1.5 cups (I used basmati rice)
  • Turmeric powder - ¼ tsp
  • Grated jaggery - 1 tbsp
  • Salt - ½ tsp or to taste
For the Tamarind Paste
  • Tamarind - a large lime-sized ball
  • Fenugreek seeds / methi / menthayam / uluva - ¾ tsp
  • Coriander seeds - 1 tbsp
  • Dry red chillies - 6 or to taste
  • Salt - ½ tsp or to taste
For the Pulioyadharai Masala
  • Grated coconut - 2 tbsp
  • White sesame seeds - 1 tbsp (optional)
For Tempering
  • Sesame seed oil / nallennai / gingelly oil - 3-4 tbsp
  • Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
  • Asafoetida powder / hing / kaayam - ½ tsp
  • Dry red chillies - 2, halved
  • Urad dal / ulutham paruppu / uzhunnu parippu - 1 tsp
  • Chana dal / bengal gram / kadala parippu - 1 tsp
  • Curry leaves - a few
For Garnishing
  • Sesame seed oil - 2 tbsp (optional, add if you find the rice too dry)
  • Roasted peanuts - ¼ cup
  1. Wash and soak the rice in 4 cups water for half an hour. Rinse. Cook in an open, thick-bottomed vessel with 4 cups water (add more if it's not enough while cooking) until the rice is cooked yet not too soft.
  2. Transfer to a colander and let it drip off the excess water. I have found this to be the best way to cook basmati rice since pressure cooking it either makes it under cooked or too mushy.
  3. Soak tamarind and salt for tamarind paste in ½ cup water for 15 mins.
  4. Soak fenugreek seeds, coriander seeds and red chillies in ½ cup water for 15 mins. Drain well. Do all the soaking simultaneously to save time.
  5. Heat a frying pan and roast the coconut (don't add any oil) till it turns a light brown colour. 6. Remove and roast the sesame seeds (if using) until they start spluttering and turn golden brown. 6. Mix together with the coconut and grind to a fine powder. Keep aside.
  6. In the same grinder, combine all ingredients for tamarind paste and grind to a fine paste.
  7. Heat 3-4 tbsp gingelly oil in the same pan and fry the peanuts until crisp. Drain and set aside.
  8. Add the ingredients for tempering to the same oil. When the mustard seeds start spluttering, add tamarind paste, jaggery, salt, turmeric and ½ - 1 cup water.
  9. Mix well and simmer till all water has evaporated and the mixture has a jam-like consistency. Remove.
  10. Place rice in a large bowl and gradually blend in the tamarind paste. Sprinkle in spice powder and mix well. Check and adjust salt.
  11. Add more oil if needed and mix in the roasted peanuts.
Recipe by Edible Garden at https://www.cookingandme.com/2009/01/12/puliyodharai-recipe-make-puliyodharai/