ennai kathirikai kulambu recipe, brinjal kulambu recipe
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4.29 from 7 votes

ennai kathirikai kulambu

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.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: main course
Cuisine: south indian, tamil nadu
Servings: 3
Author: Dassana Amit


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


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.