Kootu, Sides

Kathrikkai Karamani Kootu

Kathrikkai Karamani Kootu

Kathrikkai is Aubergine / Brinjal in Tamil. And Kootu refers to a medley of lentils and veggies in a thick curry kind or a stew consistency. Often Kootu is one of the main stays of Tamilnadu Cuisine, and is served with Rasam. In our family, we love this with Curd Rice too or even Chapati. Karamani refers to the brown eyed lentils commonly known as Cow pea. 

Kootu features regularly in our regular menu as well as some varieties made on occasions and we enjoy making different kinds almost on a weekly basis. Deriving from the tamil word, Kootu literally means ‘ to add’. So, we add lentils and veggies together in a semi thickish gravy which goes well with hot rice and ghee (clarified butter). Ergo, Katrikkai Karamani Kootu is a delicious South Indian dish made with Aubergines and Cow peas with a spiced masala paste. Served with Rice or flatbreads.

Memories of Kathrikkai Karamani Kootu

This dish has traversed from the Mysore (a city in Karnataka) to my hearth (Tamil speaking household) and is a common dish made by Tamilians hailing from the Karnataka region, that too from the Mysore section of Karnataka. With this being mom’s signature dish , I had to update the post here and share it.

Enjoyed with hot rice, this is a great dish that tastes better the next day too with chilled curd rice. Make sure you make this with long and green brinjals (aka Mysore Badanekaayi) for best results. Another tip from Amma (mom) is that the black eyed pea (or Alasandhe) needs to be cooked to neither mushy or undercooked.

What are the different types of Kootu served?

Be it part of the traditional sit down meal (served on plantain leaves) or a festive occasion or even regular home menus, Kootus can be classified as Puli Kootu (based in Tamarind Gravy), Aruchivitta Kootu (made with home made ground masala) or Poricha Kootu (made with freshly roasted and ground masala powder).

Katrikkai Karamani Kootu is a delicious South Indian dish made with Aubergines and Cow peas with a spiced masala paste. Served with Rice or flatbreads.Pin

What are the variations to this Kathrikkai Karamani Kootu if I don’t eat brinjals / am allergic to them?

Basically, any lentil (Cow pea, Black eyed pea, Toor Dal or Moong Dal) is blended with veggies (mostly snake gourd, chow chow (chayote), cabbage, ash gourd, or even string beans).  But the masala paste stays the same. 

Traditionally , Kootu is made without any onion or garlic, although that is changing with tastebuds evolving. Today’s dish does not need both onion or garlic and is best savoured that way.

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What are the major ingredients that go into Kathrikkai Karamani Kootu:

  • Aubergine – the long slender Purple / Green Varieties work best here. *If you are not able to get the green ones, select
    brinjals which are not the Bharta (big huge ones) or the ones which have many seeds. Basically the tender the brinjals, the taster the curry.
  • Coriander & Cumin seeds – add volumes to the flavour
  • Coconut – to add thickness to the gravy and balance the flavours, while adding good fats
  • Tamarind – to balance the astringent taste of the aubergines.  

Other Kootu varieties you may like:

Vazhai Thandu Mor kootu | Banana Stem in Spiced Yoghurt Gravy
Vazhai Thandu Mor Kootu is a spiced curry made with yoghurt and tender banana stem. This is usually served with Sambhar and steamed rice.
Check out this recipe
Vazhai Thandu Mor Kootu is a spiced curry made with yoghurt and tender banana stem. This is usually served with Sambhar and steamed rice.
Podalangai Poricha Kootu
Podlangai Poricha Kootu is a GF, Vegan stew made with snakegourd, lentils and a freshly ground spice paste. Served with Steamed rice or chapati
Check out this recipe
Podalangai Poricha Kootu
Katrikkai Karamani Kootu is a delicious South Indian dish made with Aubergines and Cow peas with a spiced masala paste. Served with Rice or flatbreads.Pin

Let’s get to making this Katrikkai Karamani Kootu:

Prep time : 45 mins soaking + 15 mins | Cook time : 15 mins | Serves : 4~5 

Difficulty level : Medium Spice factor : Medium ; Cuisine : South Indian, Course – Side Dish

Serving accompaniments : Hot rice, ghee & Papad

Ingredients to make Katrikkai Karamani Kootu:

  • 300 grams Long, slender and fresh green brinjals (or about 3 – 4 medium ones) *
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric 
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup Cow pea / Black eyed pea / Alasandhe / Karamani (or 3 handfuls)
  • 3 tsp Oil

Tempering:

  • 1 tsp Mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp Cumin (jeera)
  • 1 sprig curry leaves

For the Masala paste:

  • 1/4 cup Fresh coconut (if using Frozen, thaw for 5 mins on countertop) 
  • 1 TBSP Coriander seeds (Dhaniya)
  • 1 TBSP Tamarind Paste (or 1 medium lemon sized tamarind, with thick extract taken)
  • 3 Dry Red Chillies 
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 TBSP Bengal Gram (Channa Dal)
  • 1/4 tsp Asafoetida ( a generous pinch, skip for Gluten Free)

Pin Kathrikkai Karamani Kootu for later!

Katrikkai Karamani Kootu is a delicious South Indian dish made with Aubergines and Cow peas with a spiced masala paste. Served with Rice or flatbreads.Pin

Method to make Katrikkai Karamani Kootu:

  1. Wash and soak black eyed pea in warm water for 30 min – 1 hour. Once done, drain and pressure cook with a pinch of salt to 2-3 whistles till just done, but not mushy. Drain the water and reserve it.
  2. Wash  and pat dry the brinjals. Cut into 1 inch long batons and reserve in warm salted water. 
  3. Heat 1 tsp of oil. Roast all the ingredients except coconut and asafoetida one by one till they are slightly roasted. 
  4. Cool and grind with 1/4 cup water to a thickish paste.
  5. In the same pan, heat the remaining oil. Prepare the tempering with the mustard and curry leaves. 
  6. Once the spluttering comes down, add the cut brinjals, turmeric and saute for 5 – 6 mins till the oil coats the brinjal.
  7. Now add requisite salt and sprinkle little water. Cover and cook till brinjals are cooked, but firm, about 8- 10 mins on medium heat.
  8. Once they are done, add the masala paste, and saute till the raw smell disappears and the oil begins to leave the
    sides. Check for salt and spices.
  9. Once masala paste is cooked, add the cooked lentils, and 1/4 – 1/2 cup salt and mix well. Cover and cook for further
    6 – 8 mins till done and a wonderful nutty aroma emerges and you get a thickish gravy.
  10. Serve hot with rice and a dollop of ghee.
Katrikkai Karamani Kootu is a delicious South Indian dish made with Aubergines and Cow peas with a spiced masala paste. Served with Rice or flatbreads.Pin

Kathrikkai Karamani Kootu

Kalyani
Katrikkai Karamani Kootu is a delicious South Indian dish made with Aubergines and Cow peas with a spiced masala paste. Served with Rice or flatbreads.
5 from 10 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Soak time 1 hr 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr 55 mins
Course Kootu, Side Dish
Cuisine Indian, South Indian
Servings 4 people

Equipment

  • Wet Blender
  • Thick Bottomed Pan

Ingredients
  

  • 300 grams Aubergine slender and fresh green brinjals (or about 3 – 4 medium ones)
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup Cow pea Black eyed pea / Alasandhe / Karamani – about 3-4 handfuls

Tempering

  • 3 tsp Oil
  • 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds jeera
  • 1 sprig Curry Leaves

Masala Paste

  • 1/4 cup Fresh Coconut if using Frozen, thaw for 5 mins on countertop
  • 1 TBSP Coriander seeds Dhaniya
  • 1 TBSP thick tamarind paste or 1 medium lemon sized tamarind, with thick extract taken
  • 3 Dry Red Chillies
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin seeds
  • 1 TBSP Bengal Gram Channa Dal
  • 1/4 tsp Asafoetida a generous pinch, skip for Gluten Free

Instructions
 

  • Wash and soak black eyed pea in warm water for 30 min – 1 hour. Once done, drain and pressure cook with a pinch of salt to 2-3 whistles till just done, but not mushy. Drain the water and reserve it.
  • Wash  and pat dry the brinjals. Cut into 1 inch long batons and reserve in warm salted water.
  • Heat 1 tsp of oil. Roast all the ingredients except coconut and asafoetida one by one till they are slightly roasted.
  • Cool and grind with 1/4 cup water to a thickish paste.
  • In the same pan, heat the remaining oil. Prepare the tempering with the mustard and curry leaves.
  • Once the spluttering comes down, add the cut brinjals, turmeric and saute for 5 – 6 mins till the oil coats the brinjal.
  • Now add requisite salt and sprinkle little water. Cover and cook till brinjals are cooked, but firm, about 8- 10 mins on medium heat.
  • Once they are done, add the masala paste, and saute till the raw smell disappears and the oil begins to leave the
sides. Check for salt and spices.
  • Once masala paste is cooked, add the cooked lentils, and 1/4 – 1/2 cup salt and mix well. Cover and cook for further
6 – 8 mins till done and a wonderful nutty aroma emerges and you get a thickish gravy.
  • Serve hot with rice and a dollop of ghee.
Keyword Gluten Free, Karamani Kootu, Katrikkai Kootu, Kootu, Side Dish, Side dish for Chapati, South Indian, Vegan
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37 Comments

  1. Interesting to read about kootu kalyani. Never knew the gravies made this way is also called as kootus..the dish has a lovely look.

  2. turmericnspice

    This is a great recipe for a weeknight meal. Am going to bookmark it. thxs !

  3. deepaksaagar

    I love brinjal, but am sadly allergic to it. This Kootu looks amazing. I will try it out and take a dose of Allegra for mental-peace 😀

  4. eshoboshoaahare.blogspot.in

    Looks yummy and healthy too.. nice recipe.

  5. preeti garg

    Looks yummy and Tasty

  6. vaishali sabnani

    Kalyani, my son I law makes excellent koots, so I don't get. Chance to cook these, but the dish looks really good and I wishI could eat …from that bowl.

  7. Suma Gandlur

    I know how delicious this dish is.
    My MIL was neither a Kannadiga nor a Tamilian but used to prepare this dish and we just call it alasanda pulusu. I didn't know it is also called kootu. 🙂

  8. Harini R

    Love this a lot except that I don't eat brinjal.

  9. Looks delicious kalyani 🙂

  10. Chef Mireille

    the masala must make this so flavorful although I would be exchanging the eggplant for another veggie

  11. Priya Srinivasan - I Camp in My Kitchen

    Puli/Tamarind Kootu's are my Mom's Speciality!!! She too makes them with any veggies n my fav is the Vazhaipoo/Banana stem tamarind kootu!! 🙂
    This looks very hearty and real Mouth-watering!!!

  12. Lovely post.. Thanks for the info on kootus, didn't know that different types of kootus existed. This eggplant kootu looks delicious. This will be the next dish I'm going to make with eggplants 🙂

  13. My mom keeps telling me about this combo and how she used to love it in her childhood days. I am yet to make this. Looks very appetizing Kalyani…

  14. Anonymous

    Loved the color.. It looks flavorful and delicious

  15. Love your writeup!! Quick and easy recipe..

  16. What a lovely collection of eggplant dishes! I'm drooling here! Thanks for linking to the event.

  17. 5 stars
    Amma and paati (paternal) used to love this kootu and amma would make it when pati used to come over . I have very vague remembrance of how it tasted but now I am tempted to try it 🙂

  18. Mayuri Patel

    5 stars
    With the limited variety of veggies I get, this aubergine and cow pea curry is God sent. Am always looking for different ways to prepare eggplant. With coconut in it, it is even more tempting to make it and enjoy with some rice.

  19. Shobha Keshwani

    5 stars
    Yummy kootu. I love it with plain rice and fried papads. Best and satisfying meal.

  20. 5 stars
    This katrikkai karamani kootu is a nice recipe. I would love to try this flavor packed recipe. Nice post!

  21. Mina Joshi

    5 stars
    This curry looks amazing. I love black eyed peas so making this curry with aubergines is a really clever idea. This must taste great with rice.

  22. Seema Sriram

    5 stars
    Rasam and kootu combo never fails. The kathrikka kootu was amma’s favorite too and we grew a lot of them it was always the sunday menu.

  23. 5 stars
    I never tried kootu with eggplant and cow peas combination. Love it and thanks for sharing the recipe.

  24. 5 stars
    Love eggplant and I love black eyed peas, need to try this recipe right now. Your photography is beautiful!

  25. Jayashree T.Rao

    5 stars
    Kathrikai Karamani Kootu makes a good accompaniment with hot steamed. I have never made in this combination, need to give a try.

  26. Sujata Roy

    5 stars
    Kootu sounds awesome Kalyani. Ground spices and coconut surely made this dish flavorful and delicious. Loved the colour of the gravy.

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