One of the most staple preparations at home, when I was a little, was the Molagootal. It`s the kerala preparation of the “kootu”….only its not a side.It`s our substitute for sambar or kuzhambu. The molagootal is a slightly bland broth and so we have spicy tangy options to go with it. One such side is the Inji Pulikachal. Simply translated it means “ginger simmered in tamarind”. One of the highlights of Pulikachal is the rush of tastes when you lick even a drop of it…There`s the heat from the chillies, the spice from the ginger, the slight sweet lingering in your mouth from the jaggery and the tanginess from the tamarind. What can one say of the result ??? Heavenly!!!
There is really not a specific measurement – It depends on one`s own requirement of spice, heat and tanginess. These are my indicative measurements. Again, there are differences in the tamarind, chillies etc, so you would need to adjust the proportions accordingly.
1 1/2 cups of Tamarind Juice.
3 Tbsp of Chopped Ginger.
3 Tbsp finely chopped green chillis.
2 spoons of jaggery.
1 spoon of rice flour dissolved in 4 spoons of water.
Salt to taste.
Bengal Gram Dhal, Mustard & Curry Leaves.
- In a kadai, add 4 spoons of gingely oil and when hot, add bengal gram, chopped ginger and chopped green chillis.
- Allow it to fry in the oil well and then add the mustard and curry leaves.
- Now add the tamarind juice, hing, salt and the required turmeric.
- Mix well, add the jaggery and allow the gravy to simmer on medium flame for about 30 minutes or so.
- At the end, add the rice flour dissolved in water to thicken the pulikachal in a “pachadi” consistency.
- As an option, you could allow it to simmer for more time, until all the water evaporates and it gets in to a paste form. This will keep for many days in the refreigerator.
- Serve with Molagootal, Khichdi, Venn Pongal or with tasty curd rice.