The tamarind rice popularly called puliodharai saadam, pulikaaichal or puli chaadham in tamil and Huli anna or puliogare in kannada is a traditional recipe of South India. I do not know what it's called in malayalam or telugu, but, I am sure there will be one recipe for tamarind rice. This is a typical travel food and is my entry to The travel food festival hosted by Simple Indian food. There are many many versions of this tamarind rice, but the recipe that I am sharing here is my mom's and she calls the prepared tamarind paste as chitra anna gojju. To prepare the tamarind rice, this paste is simply mixed with white rice.
Cooked rice - 2 cups (grains separated)
Tamarind - 2 lemon sized balls
Gingili oil (sesame oil) / Nalla ennai - 1/2 cup
Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
Turmeric powder - half teaspoon
Salt - as required
Jaggery - 2 teaspoons
Curry leaves - from 3 to 4 strads
Asafoetida powder - 1/4 teaspoon
Peanuts - half cup
Roast and grind together the following:
Channa dal - 2 teaspoons
Urud dal - 4 teaspoon
Dhania - 2 teaspoons
Fenugreek seeds (vendhayam/mentha) - 1/4 teaspoon
Pepper corns - 1 teaspoon
Dry red chillis - 10 to 12 number
(depending upon how hot you want the rice)
Soak tamarind in 4 cups warm water for altest fifteen minutes and squeeze using hands. Pour the mixture through a strainer and extract the thick tamarind juice. You can just use your hands to take away the seeds and all the tamarind that is not dissolved. Keep it aside.
Heat oil in a wide heavy bottomed kadai. Tamper the mustard seeds. Add the peanuts and curry leaves.
Pour the tamarind water. when it starts boiling add the salt, turmeric powder, asafoetida powder and jaggery. Allow it to boil for alteast 10 minutes in high or until the raw tamarind smell goes away.
Reduce the heat and mix in the ground masala and you will notice the content thickening gradually. Allow it to boil partially closed stirring occasionally. This will take atleast 15 minutes. If you think the water is not enought pour half a cup of water and allow it to boil. You can see the masala blending well with the tamarind water. At this stage you can add a tablespoon of sesame oil for flavor.
Turn off the heat and let it sit for 5 minutes. Mix a tablespoon of this gojju to the prepared rice. Add a dash of ghee which is optional and enjoy the tamarind rice with pappads, chips or just curds.