ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe | brinjal kulambu recipe | kathirikai kulambu

Ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe with step by step pics. Ennai kathirikai kulambu is a gravy based dish from the Tamil Nadu cuisine. Ennai kathirikai kulambu has a sour taste along with a complex flavor. So best served with steamed rice.

Ennai Means oil and Kathirikai means brinjal (aubergines, eggplants). Here the brinjals are fried or sautéed in oil first. Hence the name ennai kathirikai in tamil language which means ‘brinjals in oil’ or ‘oily brinjals’. Kulambu are gravy based dishes from the Tamil Nadu cuisine. Even if the term ‘ennai kathirikai’ means oily brinjals, it does not imply that a lot of oil is used in the recipe.

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kathirikai kulambu recipe

There are many variations and versions of making ennai kathirikai kulambu. I am sharing an easy recipe and method which I make on occasions.

Roasted spices and coconut is ground first to make the masala paste. A variation is to stuff the ground masala paste in the brinjals. I keep things easy, so instead of stuffing, I cook the masala paste and brinjals together. If you want you can stuff the masala paste in the brinjals.

Two more gravy recipes you can make with brinjal are Brinjal sambar and this Gutti vankaya kura from the Andhra cuisine.

For ennai kathirikai kulambu, its best to use small and tender brinjals. this ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe is made without onion and garlic. You can add onion and garlic if you want. For some flavor, I also add poppy seeds, but they can be skipped, if you don’t have them.

I do make kulambu recipes on occasions and I have already shared some kulambu varieties :

Serve ennai kathirikai kulambu with steamed rice.

STEP BY STEP PHOTOS ABOVEMany of my recipes have detailed step by step photos and useful tips to help you make it easily and perfectly.

Ennai Kathirikai Kulambu

4.63 from 8 votes
Ennai kathirikai kulambu is a gravy based dish from the Tamil Nadu cuisine. Ennai kathirikai kulambu has a sour taste with a complex flavor. So best served with steamed rice.
ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe, brinjal kulambu recipe
Author:Dassana Amit
Prep Time:15 mins
Cook Time:25 mins
Total Time:40 mins
Course:main course
Cuisine:south indian,tamil nadu
Servings (change the number to scale):3
(1 CUP = 250 ML)

Ingredients

for spice paste

  • 2 teaspoons gingelly oil (oil made raw sesame seeds)
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds (sabut dhania)
  • 2 teaspoons chana dal (husked and split bengal gram)
  • 1 teaspoon urad dal (husked and split black gram)
  • ¼ teaspoon fenugreek seeds (methi dana)
  • 2 dry red chilies (sookhi lal mirch)
  • 5 tablespoons grated fresh coconut (taza nariyal)
  • 2 teaspoons poppy seeds (khus khus)
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds (jeera)
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper (kali mirch)
  • cup water or add as required

for tamarind pulp

  • 1 tablespoon tightly packed tamarind (imli)
  • ½ cup hot water

other ingredients for ennai kathirikai kulambu

  • 250 grams small brinjals or 10 to 12 small brinjals (kathirikai or baingan or eggplant)
  • 3 tablespoons sesame oil (oil made raw sesame seeds)
  • ½ teaspoon mustard seeds (rai)
  • 9 to 10 curry leaves - chopped or broken (kadi patta)
  • 2 pinch asafoetida (hing)
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder (haldi)
  • 1 cup water or add as required
  • salt as required
  • 1 teaspoon jaggery powder or add as per taste (gud) - optional

Instructions

frying spices and lentils for brinjal kulambu

  • In a small pan or kadai, heat 2 teaspoons gingelly oil (sesame oil made from raw sesame seeds). Keep flame to a low. Add 2 teaspoons chana dal.
  • Stirring often, fry chana dal till they become light golden.
  • Then add 1 teaspoon urad dal.
  • Mix and fry till urad dal turns light golden.
  • Then add 1 tablespoon coriander seeds, ½ teaspoon cumin seeds, ¼ teaspoon black pepper and 2 dry red chilies (broken and seeds removed). Keep all the spices ready before you begin to fry them. Use kashmiri red chilies or byadagi red chilies for good color and less spiciness in the gravy.
  • Fry for some seconds till the spices are aromatic and both the chana dal and urad dal become golden. If the pan is too hot then switch off the flame.
  • Add ¼ teaspoon fenugreek seeds and 2 teaspoons poppy seeds. Poppy seeds can be skipped if you do not have them. mix well.
  • Then add 5 tablespoons grated coconut.
  • Mix again. Switch off the flame and keep the pan down. Let the mixture cool down.

making masala paste

  • When the mixture has cooled, then add in a chutney grinder or mixer jar. Add ⅓ or ½ cup water.
  • Grind to a smooth paste. Keep the paste aside.

preparing tamarind pulp & brinjals

  • Soak 1 tablespoon tightly packed tamarind in ½ cup hot water for 20 to 30 minutes.
  • Later squeeze the soaked tamarind in the water itself to get tamarind pulp. Keep tamarind pulp aside.
  • Rinse 250 grams small brinjals or 10 to 12 small brinjals a couple of times in water. Drain all the water. Then take each brinjal and cut it from the base till upwards but without cutting the entire brinjal.
  • Basically make an incision like that of a cross on the brinjal. Open each brinjal and check for worms and insects. Discard the brinjals if they have worms or insects.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu

  • Heat 3 tablespoons gingelly oil in a pan. Add ½ teaspoon mustard seeds.
  • Let the mustard seeds crackle.
  • Then add 9 to 10 curry leaves (chopped) and 2 pinch asafoetida. Mix well.
  • Add the brinjals. on a low to medium-low flame, stirring often sauté the brinjals.
  • Sauté till their color changes and you see some blisters on the brinjals.
  • Add ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder.
  • Mix well. At this step you can also add some ¼ to ½ teaspoon red chili powder if you want.
  • Add the ground masala paste. stir and mix very well.
  • Add the prepared tamarind pulp. then add 1 cup water. mix very well.
  • Season with salt as per taste. mix again.
  • Cover the pan and simmer the brinjal kulambu gravy on a low to medium-low flame.
  • In between do check. Add more water if gravy looks very thick or the water dries up.
  • Simmer till the brinjals are cooked and tender. Pass a knife or fork through brinjal and it should slid easily. Some oil specks will also be seen on top and brinjal kulambu gravy will thicken.
  • Add 1 teaspoon jaggery powder or add as per taste. Jaggery is optional and can be skipped. mix again.
  • Lastly switch off flame and add 2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves. Mix again. You can even garnish with coriander leaves while serving brinjal kulambu.
  • Serve ennai kathirikai kulambu with steamed rice.

Nutrition Info (approximate values)

Nutrition Facts
Ennai Kathirikai Kulambu
Amount Per Serving
Calories 269 Calories from Fat 189
% Daily Value*
Fat 21g32%
Saturated Fat 5g31%
Sodium 405mg18%
Potassium 415mg12%
Carbohydrates 19g6%
Fiber 7g29%
Sugar 10g11%
Protein 4g8%
Vitamin A 418IU8%
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) 1mg67%
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 1mg59%
Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 36mg180%
Vitamin B6 1mg50%
Vitamin C 105mg127%
Vitamin E 1mg7%
Vitamin K 9µg9%
Calcium 73mg7%
Vitamin B9 (Folate) 397µg99%
Iron 2mg11%
Magnesium 44mg11%
Phosphorus 91mg9%
Zinc 1mg7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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How to make ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

A) frying spices and lentils:

1. In a small pan or kadai, heat 2 teaspoons gingelly oil (sesame oil made from raw sesame seeds). Keep flame to a low. Add 2 teaspoons chana dal. You can use sunflower oil if you do not have sesame oil.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

2. Stirring often, fry chana dal till they become light golden.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

3. Then add 1 teaspoon urad dal.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

4. Begin to fry urad dal on a low flame.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

5. Mix and fry till urad dal turns light golden.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

6. Then add 1 tablespoon coriander seeds, ½ teaspoon cumin seeds, ¼ teaspoon black pepper and 2 dry red chilies (broken and seeds removed). Keep all the spices ready before you begin to fry them. Use Kashmiri red chilies or byadagi red chilies for good color and less spiciness in the gravy.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

7. Fry for some seconds till the spices are aromatic and both the chana dal and urad dal become golden. If the pan is too hot then switch off the flame.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

8. Add ¼ teaspoon fenugreek seeds and 2 teaspoons poppy seeds. Poppy seeds can be skipped if you do not have them.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

9. Mix well.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

10. Then add 5 tablespoons grated coconut.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

11. Mix again. Switch off the flame and keep the pan down. Let the mixture cool down.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

B) making masala paste:

12. When the mixture has cooled, then add in a chutney grinder or mixer jar. Add ⅓ or ½ cup water.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

13. Grind to a smooth paste. Keep the paste aside.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

C) preparing tamarind pulp & brinjals:

14. Soak 1 tablespoon tightly packed tamarind in ½ cup hot water for 20 to 30 minutes.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

15. Later squeeze the soaked tamarind in the water itself to get tamarind pulp. Keep tamarind pulp aside.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

16. Rinse 250 grams small brinjals or 10 to 12 small brinjals a couple of times in water. Drain all the water. Then take each brinjal and cut it from the base till upwards but without cutting the entire brinjal. Basically make an incision like that of a cross on the brinjal. Open each brinjal and check for worms and insects. Discard the brinjals if they have worms or insects. You can discard the stalks if you want.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

Making brinjal kulambu

17. Heat 3 tablespoons gingelly oil in a pan. Add ½ teaspoon mustard seeds. You can use sunflower oil instead of sesame oil.

making ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe

18. Let the mustard seeds crackle.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

19. Then add 9 to 10 curry leaves (chopped) and 2 pinch asafoetida. Mix well.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

20. Add the brinjals.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

21. On a low to medium-low flame, stirring often sauté the brinjals.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

22. Sauté till their color changes and you see some blisters on the brinjals.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

23. Add ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

24. Mix well. At this step you can also add some ¼ to ½ teaspoon red chili powder if you want.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

25. Add the ground masala paste.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

26. Stir and mix very well.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

27. Add the prepared tamarind pulp.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

28. Then add 1 cup water.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

29. Mix very well.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

30. Season with salt as per taste.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

31. Mix again.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

32. Cover the pan and simmer the brinjal kulambu gravy on a low to medium-low flame.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

33. In between do check. Add more water if gravy looks very thick or the water dries up.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

34. Simmer till the brinjals are cooked and tender. Pass a knife or fork through brinjal and it should slid easily. Some oil specks will also be seen on top and brinjal kulambu gravy will thicken.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

35. Add 1 teaspoon jaggery powder or add as per taste. Jaggery is optional and can be skipped.

making brinjal kulambu recipe

36. Mix again.

ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe, brinjal kulambu recipe

37. Lastly switch off flame and add 2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves. Mix again. You can even garnish with coriander leaves while serving brinjal kulambu.

ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe, brinjal kulambu recipe

38. Serve ennai kathirikai kulambu with steamed rice.

ennai kathirikai kulambu

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Dassana Amit

Dassana Amitnamaste and welcome to vegrecipesofindia.com which i started in feb 2009 and is a pure vegetarian blog. i have been passionate about cooking from childhood and began to cook from the age of 10. later having enrolled in a home science degree greatly enhanced my cooking & baking skills and took it to a different level which i now share as foolproof recipes. i was formally trained both in mainstream indian as well as international cuisines.

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2 comments/reviews

  1. Loved it! This was one of my favorite dishes growing up and it never fails to please. I made a few changes however – I added the curry leaves and mustard seeds towards the end when the curry was almost close to done. And I added 3 pods of crushed garlic as well to give it that extra kick.5 stars

    • thanks vidya. glad. tadka of mustard seeds and curry leaves can also be added at the end and yes garlic can be added. thanks for sharing the variations you made.