Food can be a medicine and taste delicious too. Pepper is a great spice that was used a lot in Indian cooking before chillies entered the picture. It has a lot of medicinal value and takes care of your health. Molagu kozhambu is a very traditional Tamil kozhambu or sauce that is prepared when one is getting over a fever, cold, or trying to create warmth to the body. After heavy meals during weddings or celebrations, having this kozhambu helps in cleansing the body. I love this served with pruppu thogayal (lentil chutney). In the traditional recipe, it does not have any vegetables in the kozhambu. However, in Chettinadu cuisine they add onions and garlic to the recipe. Today, I am posting a recipe that is traditional but has a special addition with drumstick that my sister-in-law Renu used to add. I find that its makes molagu kozhambu very flavorful and delicious. An absolute favorite of mine.
Heavy Bottom Wok/ Pan
Measuring Cups and Spoons
Peppercorns - 11/2 tbsp
Thoor Dal - 2 tbsp
Curry Leaves - 1 fist full
Drumstick - 8
Cumin Seeds - 2 tsp
Sesame Oil - 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp for seasoning
Asafoetida - a few shakes
Mustard Seeds - 1 tsp
Coriander Powder - 1/2 tsp
Coconut - 2 tsp
Red Dry Chillies - 1
Tamarind - 25 cents or 50 paise Indian
Water - 2 cups
1. In a saucepan add tamarind, drumstick, salt and water. Cook for 8-10 minutes. Filter the tamarind residue from the liquid and discard.
2. In the meantime, heat the wok and add oil, asafetida, peppercorns, cumin seeds, coriander powder, red chillies, thoor dal and roast them until thoor dal gets golden. Remove from heat and transfer to a blender along with some coconut(optional). Cool and grind into a paste.
3. Once the tamarind is cooked add the paste to it and bring it to a boil. Boil for a few minutes.
4. Heat the wok with 1 tsp oil, add mustard and methi seeds. Let the mustard seed pop, add it to the kozhmbu and serve hot with paruppu thogayal, pan sautéed veggies and tasted pappad.