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Onions Vetha Kuzhambu

Vetha Kuzhambu is a hidden South Indian culinary gem, which resembles its more popular cousin, Sambhar. It tastes divine with a dollop of ghee, some piping hot rice and papad!
Course Main Course
Cuisine south indian, tamil


  • 300 gms onions peeled baby about
  • cloves Garlic about
  • Tamarind a medium sized ball
  • 1 tsp Mustard seeds
  • Curry leaves about
  • 1/2 tsp ghee
  • 1 tsp rice flour
  • to taste salt

For the spice powder

  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds (jeera)
  • 1/2 tsp Methi seeds
  • 1 tbsp Coriander seeds
  • 3 you cans Chillies Dry Red I used reduce to want it less spicy one or two


  • Dry roast all the ingredients for the spice powder till they are just about brown and leave a lovely aroma, cool them a little and grind to get coarse powder.
  • Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan and add mustard seeds to it, when they start spluttering add curry leaves and garlic to it. Fry for about a minute or so till the garlic starts turning brown.
  • Add the peeled onions (the recipe source has a tip for peeling onions but me I bought the ready peeled ones ;-) ) Mix well and add salt to it. Fry for one minute and than add the sambhar powder to the same.
  • Add one more 1 tbsp of oil to it and let it fry for sometime. According to Mriganayani 'Vetha Kuzhambu was derived from the word Varutha Kuzhambu - which means the veggies used in the kuzhambu was fried in the sambar powder first".Interesting.
  • Add the ghee at this stage, she mentioned in her post that one would smell heaven here and I think she was wrong... heaven is an understatement here. I just can't begin to describe how nice it smelled... yummmm.
  • When you get over the smell (though take care not to burn it by smelling for too long) add the tamarind pulp and some more water to it. Let it boil for about 10 minutes till the raw smell disappears.
  • And after this be prepared for your house to be taken over by a waft or aroma that just can't described, it can only be felt. Please add the spice powder to the curry, relish the smell for about 2 minutes till you start on the next step :)
  • At this stage make a paste of 1 tsp of rice flour and some water and add to the curry to thicken it up. Boil for about 5 minutes so that rice flour gets cooked.
  • Serve hot with hot steaming rice, my mil tells me that roasted papad is a great combination for this.. next time I will make that too.


and yes, the in-house critique approved of what I made and gobbled up a whole plate of rice and Kuzhambu without uttering a word and while he was going for a second helping I had to stop him and take feedback ;) he said it was yummiest he has had :D :D
Vetha Kuzhambu
And I am sending this to Celebrating Regional Cuisine being held by Sujana
If you make this, share a picture with me on twitterinstagram or Facebook? I would love to hear what you have to say about it !
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!