Thamizh Festivals XXV(tiruvAdirai)

This is a festival for Lord Siva. It is celebrated on the day when the ruling star is tiruvAdirai and in all the Shiva temples there will be abhishEkam at 2.30 AM and thereafter the darishanam is called ArdrA darishanam.

On this day, we make KaLi, a preparation out of Rice ravA and gur/jaggery and PuLikkUTTu. We will discuss these here.

 No. of Persons: 3 Preparation time: 30 minutes Shelf life: 1 day




Raw rice

Green gram dAl (Mung)

Jaggery (Gur) (Shredded)

Grated coconut


Cardamom powder




1 cup

¼ cup

1 ½ cup

2 tbs

2 tbs

¼ tsp

6 to 8 pieces



Clean the rice and the green gram dAl. Roast them to golden colour till they give out the nice fried aroma. Stir them so that they do not char while roasting. Grind them into coarse powder in the mixie akin to semolina particles. On a thick bottomed vessel (normally a vengalappAnai, a vessel with narrow neck and broad thicker bottom is used) place the jaggery and add 3 cups of water to it. This is to avoid charring. Heat till the jaggery dissolves completely. Keep stirring to hasten the process. After it dissolves, strain the syrup to remove impurities and sand particles. Heat it again and add grated coconut. When it boils, add the roasted rice cum green gram dAl coarse mixture. Keep stirring till the raw rice and green gram mixture is cooked well. Remove from fire.  Fry the cashewnut pieces in the ghI, and add to the cooked mixture along with cardamom powder. Mix well. KaLi is ready.

The above is the normal procedure. What I do is a slightly different one. After the rice cum green gram dAl mixture is partially cooked in the jaggery syrup as above, I remove them from fire in semi liquid form and transfer to another vessel, which need not be thick bottomed. I place this in a pressure cooker and cook the KaLi as we cook rice. This way the KaLi will not be sticky but loose.



PuLikkUTTu (7 tAn)

No. of Persons: 3 Preparation time: 30 minutes Shelf life: 1 day

This we had already discussed in this blog. The procedure is exactly the same. The kUTTu normally has 7 vegetables (7 tAn) on this day viz., French Beans (PaTTai AvaraikkAi), Potato, Carrot, Beans, Yam (sEnaikkizhangu), Ash Gourd (PUshaNikkAi) and Pumpkin (Red PaRangikkAi). You can always have your own options and use available vegetables. Use only a little of each vegetable so that the 7 vegetables do not exceed ¼ kilo (250 gms) after cut into small dices.



Cut Vegetables

Grated Coconut

Coriander seeds

Bengal gram dAl (Chana)   

Black gram dAl dhaal (Urud)

Split gram dAl (tUr)


Red chillies


Turmeric powder             

Refined Oil

Curry leaves




250 gms

2 tbs

2 tbs           

1 tbs

1 tbs

½ cup

¼ tsp  

8 (small) (6 if long)

lemon size

½ tsp

required qty

a little

to taste



Heat oil and roast coriander seeds, Bengal gram dAl, black gram dAl and red chillies, stirring till the dAls become golden brown. Just before removing from fire add asafoetida and coconut. Grind these in a mixie into coarse powder without water and keep aside.  Cook the vegetables with turmeric powder. Now add tamarind extract, salt and allow boiling for 10 minutes. Pressure cook split gram dAl. Add this with ground coarse masala powder to the boiling vegetables till all become a sort of loose gravy. Remove from fire.  For seasoning, fry mustard and black gram dAl in oil with curry leaves. When mustard splutters, remove and add to the prepared kUTTu.  


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