April 26, 2012

Vellarikai Khara Pachadi | Fiery Cucumber chutney

Vellarikai Khara Pachadi (Spicy Cucumber chutney) is another dish from my Paati's (maternal grandmom) stable. Spicy to the core, and relished with hot rice and ghee / nallennai (sesame oil) , this is one of the favourite accompaniments. 

And for some reason, I had totally forgotten this for quite some time, till a basketful of cucumbers landed in the refrigerator last week. Well I did make Kosumalli (Salads) and also Cucumber pickle (recipe here!), but then was lost for ideas, till mom reminded me on the phone. And boy, was I both ecstatic and impatient to make this. 

Amma gave me the recipe,and it came out well. For the scorching summers, this is one yummy side dish that never fails whichever part of the year.

Also, do check out the 20+ Chutney varieties on the blog to go with Idli / Dosa/ Pongal

And paired with yummy Curd rice, we had this for dinner. Even kiddo who is sceptical about new dishes (especially non baked ones) had this for a yummy filling meal. Traditionally, this dish is really spicy, so adjust the spice for your kitchen. 

Prep time - 10 mins 
Cook time - 10 mins (To roast the ingredients)
Serves - 3
Difficulty level - Easy
Serving suggestions - Steamed rice / Curd Rice
  • Tender Cucumbers - 2 medium sized (See Notes below)
  • Salt - to taste
  • Tempering : oil (1/2 tsp), Mustard seeds, Curry leaves
For the masala paste:
  • Grated coconut - 1/4 cup
  • Channa Dal - 2 TBSP
  • Red chillies - 3 nos
  • Oil - 1 TBSP
  • Asafoetida - a generous pinch (skip for GF)
  • Tamarind - small gooseberry sized
  • Jaggery - 1/2 tsp 
  • Jeera / Cumin - 1/2 tsp
  • Dry Coriander seeds - 1 heaped TBSP

1) In a large pan, heat 1 TBSP oil. On medium heat, roast the channa dal, red chillies. Set aside. In the remaining oil, fry the dry coriander seeds, cumin, tamarind. Turn off the heat and add to the roasted dals-chillies. Add the grated coconut to the warm pan and saute for 1 min. Cool thoroughly. 
2) Grind this mixture (without salt) but with coconut and asafoetida to a very thick paste. 
3) Meanwhile, wash and peel cucumber. Dice into small tiny bits like you would do for Kosambari / Kosumalli (Indian cucumber salad). Mix the paste into the cucumbers till the masala paste coats the vegetable well. Do not add salt at this stage too.
4) Prepare the tempering. Once mustard splutters and curry leaves get slightly crisp, add to the chutney and mix well. Just before serving, add salt, mix well and serve immediately.

1) This dish tastes very well with very tender cucumbers.
2) If the cucumbers are not very tender, ensure to deseed the core, and then use the flesh only. 
3) This dish does not keep well for more than a day, even with refreigeration. Use the pachadi immediately.


  1. Very new recipe kalyani!!! never made spicy chutney with cucumber!!! Looks yum!!!!

  2. we too make this..we replace chana dal wid chutney dal for easy version

  3. we too make this..we replace chana dal wid chutney dal for easy version

  4. sounds delicious.The flavors are interesting.

  5. Very new to me. Pachadi looks very nice...

  6. wow khara pachadi...will go well with curd rice or khichdi.looks sizzling

  7. This is something very new and nice.

  8. Very tempting and yummy chutney,very new for me..

  9. Sounds new to me,looks tempting dear...

  10. Very new to me and I love the pachadi color...awesome. I guess it can accompany many dishes because its spicy. Bookmarked it.

  11. very new n interesting recipe Kalyani...looks hot! will try it sometime...

  12. never say no to chutney!

  13. I have not done much cooking with cucumber. This is an interesting recipe.

  14. A very new recipe but looks absolutely divine..! :)

  15. unique chutney...looks yummy!

  16. Tangy & yummy chutney..

  17. Different chutney ..


  18. This is a different one than our regular version. Bookmarked. :)

  19. New to me. Must try it out. Sounds very yummmy.

  20. New to me and sound interesting. Will try it soon..Thanks for linking.

    Kitchen Chronicles ~ Heirloom Recipes

  21. A new recipe for me.Looks nice :)


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