Karuveppilai in Tamil or Kadi Patta in Hindi or Karhinimb in Marathi is a common seasoning ingredient that is added to almost every dish to enhance its flavor and taste. Karuveppilai Podi or Curry Leaves Powder is a chutney powder made with curry leaves and had mixed with rice and ghee or as an accompaniment to South Indian breakfast items like Idlis and Dosas.
Curry leaves has got numerous health benefits. They are rich source of iron and is said to increase hemoglobin in the blood. Also, regular intake of curry leaves helps prevent premature graying of hair. But, sadly, curry leaves is one item that is always cornered in a meal most of the time. There are very few people who can eat curry leaves as such when added to dishes. My family members are no different and all the time curry leaves are added to a dish, they do a clean job in helping the curry leaves find its way to the dust bin. But surprisingly, my family loves to have curry leaves in the podi form, especially my son. Karuveppilai Podi mixed rice and ghee is his favorite. He can have this podi rice for every meal. Thanks to my mom who taught me this recipe. This powder is so aromatic that the fresh aroma of curry leaves just wafts and fills the house when you prepare. As this podi is made sans oil and dal, you get to enjoy the flavor of curry leaves to the fullest.
For making this podi, curry leaves needs to be washed and dried first. Once you’ve planned to make the podi, wash the curry leaves well, pat it dry using a kitchen towel. Spread them on a cloth and dry it for 2-3 hrs. Once the curry leaves are dry and free from moisture, you can make this podi in a jiffy.
Curry leaves – ¼ cup tightly packed (washed and dried)
Red chillies – 2
Pepper corns – ¾ tsp to 1 tsp
Hing or asafoetida – ½ tsp
Salt to taste
Prep time – 5 mins
Cook time – 5 mins
Total time – 10 mins
Yields ¼ cup
- Heat a pan and dry roast the curry leaves till crisp without burning. You should be able to crush the leaves using your hands.
- To the same pan, add red chillies and pepper corns. Roast till the chillies puff and slightly change in color.
- Cool the roasted curry leaves, red chillies and pepper. Gather everything in a mixer jar and powder coarsely. Add asafoetida and salt to taste. Mix well and store in an airtight container to retain freshness.
Karuveppilai Podi tastes delicious when mixed with hot rice and ghee or gingelly oil. Podi mixed with gingelly oil/ ghee also makes a tasty side dish for Idlis and Dosas.
- You can dry the curry leaves under sun or in shade or even use a microwave for drying.
- I have not used any oil for roasting.
- Quantity of red chillies and pepper corns used above yields mildly spiced podi. Adjust the quantity of red chillies and pepper corns to suit your preference.
- You can prepare tasty Curry Leaves Rice too using this podi, which makes an ideal lunch box. You just need to prepare the seasoning. For seasoning, heat oil, add mustard seeds and let them splutter. Add urad dal and cashews and roast till golden brown. Finally, add cooked rice and podi and mix well.
- To make Karuveppilai Kuzhambu, add a tbspn or two of this podi to plain kara kuzhambu and your instant Karuveppilai Kuzhambu is ready.