Tamarind Rice (Puliyodharai)



I don't have to tell anything about tamarind rice (Pu-li -yo-dha-rai in tamil) especially temple version :D.

I still remember hogging over homemade puliyodharai mix when I was away from home .My mom used to make and give me a box full of pulikachal and it will be completed in no time. 

If you love spicy and tangy food then this is the perfect dish for you. Very simple to make and tastes delicious !!

There are various versions of making this dish in each state as it varies according to their preference. This recipe is more like Temple prasadam or iyengar style with little variations of my choice. !! Hope you will Like this :)                                                   


Preparation time: 10 mins

cooking time: 2 hours mins

Servers : 2 cups mix


Preparation time: 10 mins

cooking time: 20 mins

Servers : 2


  • Boiled Rice - 3 cups
  • Tamarind - small lime size ball
  • Dried Red chilli - 3
  • Turmeric - generous pinch
  • Hing - a Pinch
  • Jaggery - 2 tbsp
  • Salt - to taste
  • Kotha malli vara podi - 2 tbsp

For Seasoning

  • Oil - 2 tbsp (Gingelly Oil Preferable)
  • Peanut & Cashew nuts - 2 tbsp
  • Channa dal - 1 tsp
  • Mustard Seeds - 1/2 tsp
  • Ghee - 1 tbsp (Optional, it enriches the taste)


To Make Tamarind Pulp

In a small bowl soak tamarind in 1 cup of hot water and after 10 mins take the pulp out of it. Do not add excess water, make sure the tamarind Pulp/ juice is really thick.

To Make Pulikachal / Tamarind Paste:


In a frying pan / Wok heat oil and then add Mustard seeds, once its splutters add in channa dal, Red chilli and Peanuts and roast them be careful not to burn it.

Then add in Tamarind pulp, salt, jaggery, fresh kothamalli (coriander)  powder, hing and turmeric powder and let it reduce and become a paste. Every now and them keep mixing so that it doesn't burn. When its 70% done, add in Ghee and keep reducing, once almost all water in the tamarind pulp is evaporated switch of the stove.

To Make Puliyodharai:

This recipe serves 2 cups of tamarind rice. If you want you can add as much as tamarind paste to the boiled plain white rice and enjoy with aviyal and vadam.

Store the rest of the paste in a container.

To Make in Instant pot:

Start in Saute mode - Season with mustard seeds, channa dal, urad dal and nuts. Then add hing and curry leaves.

Turn IP to slow cook mode. For 2 hours. Depending on how thick or thin and the quantity adjust the time. For a thick and 2 cups pulp I cooked for 2 hours. 


The serving size can be easily increased , also the tamarind paste can be made in large quantity and can be easily stored in a airtight container. 
Since its made with lots of oil and no moisture content is there it stays for weeks at room temperature. You can also store in refrigerator if you make a bigger batch
Make sure to make a thick tamarind

Enjoy and Happy cooking!