Andhra style tamarind rice or Pulihora is a delicacy which reminds me of comfort food. It also reminds me of the temple cuisine across India. Each famous town has its own temple cuisine. You will come across delicious Rajma chawal at Vaishno Devi dhabas, Jammu, and divine Kada Parsad at Golden temple, Amritsar. Similarly you come across great recipes in & near South Indian temples too. Godumi halwa/wheat halwa in Udupi, Laddus at Tirupati.
Usually, a simple bhog of temple style Puliyogre, daddojanam(curd rice), chakkara pongal (sweet pongal made with sugar or jaggery) and laddu is served post pooja, after naivedyam in most Andhra temples. Anyone visiting the temple at bhog timings, refreshes both the belly and soul. South Indian style simple food yet one of the most tastiest of Indian recipes I have ever tasted.
It also reminds me of Ganesh chaturthi celebrations. The atmosphere so divine and energy so electric. I have been fortunate to stay at steel plant township, Visakhapatnam. Every festival was celebrated with equal enthusiasm and fervour.
Variety of food in south Indian cuisine
There is more to South Indian cuisine than idli dosa and upma.It is not just spicy biryani as most people think. There are many more recipes that you can make. Vermicelli upma to idiyappam, payasam to Mysore pak, vegetable kurma to beetroot radish poriyal.
What is Pulihora?
Puliyodare or Puliyogare is a very popular delicacy in Andhra, Telangana, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. This is a simple recipe but full of tangy tamarind flavor. It is also vegan. You can make it even gluten free, avoiding heeng. It makes a great meal when you are in a rush or heading out for a picnic. Easy to make and comes to rescue when you got no veggies at home!
The crunch of lentils makes it very tasty. Whether you add tamarind, lemon or tomatoes. Each has its own fan following. Helps you a lot when you have less time on hands to cook. Nowadays paste or mix is available everywhere. However, it tastes better when we make it from scratch.
How many variations are there for the South Indian recipe Pulihora?
It is of many types: nimmakaya (lemon rice) and chintapandu puliyogre (tamarind) and aava pettina (where we add fresh mustard paste). I love the way simple ingredients are used in South India. The bland rice comes out so beautifully without the addition of too much spices. Also, good to eat without anything. Basic ingredients can help you create wonderful meals. Specially now with quarantine and less market trips to find veggies.
Tip: You can also use the left over rice with this tamarind mix. This helps avoid wastage. However, fresh is best. Better to use the rice cooked for lunch max by dinner.
- Frying pan
- Saucepan(if making fresh) or pressure cooker
1.5 cup cooked rice
- Sesame oil / gingelly oil
- Soaked lentil(urad dal/split black gram & chana dal/split Bengal gram)
- Peanuts/Cashews (optional)
- Heeng/asafoetida (avoid if making gluten free)
- Mustard seeds
- Turmeric powder
- Curry leaves
- Tamarind extract
- Dry red chilli slit length wise (Optional if you like it extra spicy)
- Sugar or jaggery (optional)
- Salt as per taste
How to make pulihora? (step by step)
- Sauté peanuts. Keep it aside.
- Now, temper a teaspoon mustard seeds, chillies, curry leaves in some oil. If you are using heeng/asafoetida add now.(Heeng is not gluten free so please avoid as per your choice)
- Add lentils and spices. Let it splutter.
4. Now, add tamarind pulp ,jaggery or sugar if you are adding it and stir.
5. Add rice and mix well .Garnish with peanuts. Serve hot.
Read the recipe here
- frying pan
- 1.5 cup cooked rice
- 2 tablespoon oil
- 1 tablespoon urad dal or split black gram soaked in hot water for 15 mins and drained
- 1 tablespoon channa dal or split bengal gram soaked in hot water for 15 mins and drained
- ¼ cup mungphali or peanuts
- ¼ cup kaju or cashews optional
- Generous pinch of heeng or asafoetida (avoid if making glutenfree)
- 1 teaspoon rai or mustard seeds
- ½ teaspoon haldi or turmeric powder
- ½ teaspoon adrak or ginger
- 3 sprigs of kari patta or curry leaves
- 4 tablespoon imli or tamarind paste
- 2 dried red chilli
- 1 teaspoon sugar or jaggery optional
- salt as per taste
- Cook rice and keep it aside. Ensure they are not mushy.
- In a pan,heat oil and and saute peanuts, keep it aside.
- Add mustard seeds,let it splutter.
- Add curry leaves followed by chillies and lentils.Let it roast.Add asafoetida ,turmeric,ginger
- Now add tamarind paste and mix well
- Add peanuts,rice and mix well
- Serve hot.
You may add some roasted sesame seeds in tempering if you like.
Below is the list of famous temples which you can visit in Andhra Pradesh/Telangana.
- Sri Venkateswara Temple - Tirumala,Tirupati.
- Chilkur Balaji - Best known as Visa temple, Hyderabad.
- Sri Satyanarayana Swamy vari Devastanam - Annavaram.
- Sri Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha temple, Simhachalam, Visakhapatnam.
- Kanaka Mahalaxmi temple, Vijayawada
- Sri Mallikarjuna Swamy temple, Srisailam
List of easy Indian rice recipes
South Indian rice recipes are as vibrant as the North Indian bread recipes. It is much more than a mere Andhra style spicy biryani.
Khichdi (We have used brown rice for this as a variation but you can always use white rice.)
Click here for additional rice recipes.
Also, click here to watch additional recipe videos.