Monday, 26 April 2010

Vendakkai pulikuzhambu/ ladies finger or okra in tamarind based gravy

This is one of the best way to cook ladies finger. Tastes very yummy and this kind of preparation totally removes the gooiness from this vegetable. In united states and here in Germany they call this veggie as okra. In India we call it as ladies finger (ofcourse a very beautiful name !!!). Its scientific name is Abelmoschus esculentus. I am very surprised to know that in some part of the world even the leaves of ladies finger are routinely used for making certain dishes or eaten in the form of salad. Do we use it? Any information is appreciated. This veggie is a very good source of dietary fiber. It is also a good source of protein, riboflavin, niacin, phosphorous, pottasium, zinc and copper. It is very low in saturated fat and cholesterol. A popular conception (mis!!!?) in my native place is, if you eat ladies finger you can get the ability to perform mathematics very well :). Unfortunately, for a 'mandu' like me nothing worked out in front of mathematics. For me mathematics is always a book of unnecessary 'problems' :). So, how did I make this dish?

Ingredients :

Ladies finger (Vendakkai, okra)- 250 gms
Onion- 1 no (preferably red one)
Tomato- 1 small
Green chillies- 4 nos
Curry leaves- 20 leaflets
Coriander powder- 3 tbspns
Chilli powder- 2 tspns
Tamarind- size of a small lemon (soaked and juice extracted)
Fenugreek, jeera and mustard seeds- 1 tspn each
Asafoetoda- few pinches
Turmeric- a pinch
Oil- 4 tbspns
Salt to taste

Method :

Cut vendakkai as shown in picture. Cut onions and tomatoes into small pieces. Slit green chillies and cut them into half. Heat oil in a pan. When it gets heated add fenugreek seeds. When they turn brown add mustard and jeera seeds. When they splutter add onions, curry leaves and green chillies. Add also a pinch of turmeric, few pinches of asafoetida and salt to taste. Saute well until the onions turn translucent. Now add the tomatoes and saute them until they turn soft. Now add the cut vendakkai pieces. Saute well until they obtain brown spots on its skin. Now add coriander and chilli powder. Saute for a minute and then add the extracted tamarind juice. Allow the mixture to boil well. Check once again for salt and adjust accordingly. Simmer the puli kuzhambu until oil seperates on the top. Flavourful and tasty vendakkai puli kuzhambu will be ready to serve.

Taste enhancing tips for this recipe : Saute vendakkai well in oil so that their slimy nature is removed. Tamrind removes the remaining sliminess. Adjust the salt and spiciness according to the sourness. Hope you too will enjoy it.....Happy cooking!!!


  1. Gravy looks delicous, never tried this type of gravy with okra, recipe is really very nice...

  2. I just love this kulambu with hot rice ! Mmmmmm yummy!!

  3. Manju,

    Vendkkayi pulikuzhambu looks really good.

  4. my favourite too ... hahaha ..loved the maths part hahaha

  5. manju what a nice recipe ayrr.very nice recipe.okra and puli nice combination..yummy.nice pics too.i haven't used the leaves for cooking.(wiki says,Okra leaves may be cooked in a similar way to the greens of beets or dandelions. The leaves are also eaten raw in salads.).. my hus doesn't like this veg because of its slimy texture.i think this pulikulambu doen't give such a slimy texture. so sure i will try this one.thanks for sharing this recipe yarr.

  6. Love the tangines in this recipe..

  7. Same here too, never get this calculation between the vendakkai and maths...I love pulikuzhambu with vendakkai much, love sooo much even after a day..

  8. Thank you friends and thanks a lot Prani for the info :)

  9. Wooow Okra pulikuzhambhu looks sooo sooo perfect n delicious n yummyyy...its been long days tried pulikulambhu in okra..