Tamarind Rice in Easy Steps

Tamarind Rice in Easy Steps
Tamarind Rice is one of the most popular of all the variety rice famous in Tamilnadu and indeed South India. Historically, and all the way to the present times, this dish has been a preferred dish for a long journey as this is one preparation that won’t get spoiled over a few days, even if not refrigerated. Clearly, this makes this dish- ideal travel food on long haul journeys. This delicious, tangy and mildly spicy rice, eaten with papadam or normal papad is a flavor to be relished. The recipe for this dish is all about getting the Tamarind Paste – called Pulikachal in Tamil- right. Once the Tamarind Paste is made, all you need to do is mix it with steaming, hot rice and Tamarind Rice is ready!

Health Benefits of Tamarind

Before I jump into the recipe, let me introduce you to the health benefits of Tamarind. Evidently, having the Tamarind Rice is not only a great tasting meal but also great for your health. Health website, www.healthline.com lists the benefits of Tamarind. According to the website, tamarind is rich in many nutrients including magnesium, potassium, iron, calcium, phosphorous, Vitamin B1 (Thiamin), Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) and Vitamin B3 (Niacin) It also has traces of Vitamin C, Vitamin K, vitamin B6, vitamin B5, copper, and selenium. Tamarind is also a source of fiber, protein, and fat. Health Website, www.healthline.com has more on the benefits of Tamarind. Read here

Tips for a great Tamarind Rice

How good the tamarind rice you make turns out depends on the Tamarind Paste or the Pulikachal. And, the quality of the Tamarind Paste will depend on the quality of the tamarind you use. Always use fresh tamarind so that you get the freshest extract.

  • Whenever you want to make the Tamarind Rice, make fresh rice- preferably long-grain rice like Basmati.
  • After you mix the paste and the rice together, add a generous spoon of oil on top. This will give a fresh, moist texture to the Tamarind Rice and a great taste and flavor.
Usually, this dish is a meal in itself or could be a part of a large meal, if you so wish. But if you need an accompaniment for this, go for the South Indian Pappadams. Papad will do just as well, but papadams make the meal more authentic! Get started with the First step, prepare the Pulikachal Paste.


Tamarind Rice is a tangy, spicy flavoured rice from South India. The dish is also known as Puliyodharai or Puliyogare.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine south Indian
Servings 4


  • Mixing Bowl
  • Deep Pan or Kadhai


  • 200 gms Raw Tamarind
  • 7-10 tbsp Cooking Oil
  • 2 tbsp Groundnuts
  • 18-20 Curry Leaves
  • 2 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 2 tsp Chana Dal or Bengal Gram
  • 10-12 Whole Red Chilies
  • 1 tsp Asafoetida
  • Salt To Taste


Step 1: Making the Tamarind Pulp

  • Take the raw tamarind, add enough water to soak the tamarind and let it stay covered for about 30 minutes.
  • After 30 minutes, take out the tamarind pulp by repeatedly squeezing out the tamarind essence and transferring it to a separate bowl. Keep it aside

Step 2: Making the Tamarind Masala Paste – Pulikachal

  • In a deep kadhai, heat the cooking oil. Now add the mustard seeds and let them crackle.
  • Add the Chana Dal, curry leaves and let the leaves sputter.
  • Add the groundnuts and roast it for a minute on low flame
  • Now break the red chillies and add it to the mix
  • After a minute or so, add the tamarind pulp slowly on low flame
  • Remember you are adding water to boiling oil. So be very careful to stay a bit away from the kadhai.
  • Once you have added the entire pulp, turn the flame to medium and let the whole mixture cook.
  • Keep stirring off and on.
  • After a few minutes, you will see the mixture thickening, and the oil separating on top. This will give you a sense of the quantity of the Tamarind Paste you have made. Now you can add salt accordingly
  • Once you have added the salt, turn the flame to lowest and cook for two minutes more.
  • Turn off the flame now, and let the mixture cool.
  • The Tamarind Paste or Pulikachal is ready

Step 3: Making the Tamarind Rice

  • Now take steaming hot rice in a pan, and add the tamarind paste, as much as required. Do not add salt again. You may add a bit of oil to moisten it further after the rice is made. Enjoy Tamarind Rice with a papad or a papadam
Keyword puliyogare mix, puliyogare mix recipe, tamarind rice, tamarind rice recipe

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