Tag Archives: coconut

Thengai Sadam (Coconut Rice) with coconut milk


When I open my lunch box and I see coconut rice, its a happy face.. Easy and delicious variety rice. Though i love the usual version without coconut milk, after trying this version started doing this often.  I had 1/4 cup coconut milk in fridge (Leftover after preparing Vegetable Stew) and was thinking what to do with it. Suddenly remembered Thai rice prepared with coconut milk, so added coconut milk while cooking rice and resulting coconut rice was much flavorful and tastier

Cooking rice with coconutmilk


Rice : 1/2 cup

Thin Coconut milk : 1/4 cup

Water : 3/4 cup

Ghee/ Coconut oil – one drop

Add drop of ghee/ oil and Cook rice in pressure cooker for 2 whistle or rice cooker and spread them in a wide pan


Coconut Rice:


Cooked Rice – 1 cup

Coconut – 1/3 cup

Salt – as needed

To temper:

Coconut Oil – 1 tsp

Peanuts – 5 tbsp

Cashews – 7 roughly broken

Mustard seeds – 1/4 tsp

Urad dal – 1 tsp

Channa dal – 1 tsp

Asofetida/ Hing(Perungayam) –  pinch

Green chillies – 1 slitted (Adjust according to your taste)

Curry leaves – few


  • Add 1 tsp of oil and when the oil is hot add the mustard seeds, urad dal, channa dal, cashew nuts, curry leaves asofetida and peanuts and cook till they become golden brown. Add coconut and sauté for a minute
  • Add the tempered ingredients to the pan containing rice, salt and mix gently. Check for the seasoning and add salt if required. Serve the rice with chips/ gravy


My Notes:

  • Coconut milk is optional you can cook rice without that in that case add 1:2 water


Thengai Podi


Thengai Podi is a great rice accompaniment during lazy days. Just like Tomato Thokku and Pulikaichal, this powder can be stored for more than a month, if stored in an airtight container and kept refrigerated. This quick podi stays good even in room temperature for 2 – 3 weeks. Whether its a side dish for  Bagala bath (Curd rice) or rice accompaniment with ghee/ coconut oil or side dish for south Indian Breakfast, Thengai Podi is a table winner.

Preparation time: 5 minutes | Cooking Time: 5 minutes


Coconut – 1 cup

Urad Dal – 1/4 cup

Channa Dal – 1/3 cup

Red Chilli – 7 (Adjust according to your taste)

Salt – as needed

Asafoetida – 1/8 tsp


• In a pan dry roast urad dal, channa dal and red chilli  till they turn golden brown. Transfer it to a plate. Dry roast the coconut till it turns golden brown color. Switch off the flame and Keep it aside. Add required salt and pinch of asofedtida

• After everything comes to room temperature grind them into coarse powder. Cool it and store in dry airtight container, and always use a dry spoon

IMG_2060My Notes:

  • Instead of fresh/Frozen coconut, dry coconut can also be used
  • If you are using katti perungayam add it while sauting dal
  • Roast dal and coconut well for the podi to stay fresh
  • Instead of using both urad and Channa dal, this can also be done with either urad dal or channa dal alone

Arisi Thengai Payasam


This is a traditional Payasam prepared during festive seasons. When it comes to traditional jaggery Payasam,  I prefer Arisi Thengai Payasam over Moong Dal and Channa Dal Payasam. This quick Payasam with coconut flavour makes it delicious. Today being Navaratri day 1, I prepared this Payasam for neivedhyam.  Back in India we used to keep golu in steps. Inviting people to see our golu, visiting friends and relative houses and getting Sundal, along with gifts – omg so many amazing memories. Navaratri is something I miss here. This time with my kutti krishar, I couldn’t keep bhommai outside, but happy with few bhoomai inside our Pooja room:-)

Checkout my other Payasam Recipes

Arisi Thengai Payasam:

Preparation Time : 5 min | Soaking time – 15 mins | Cooking Time : 15 – 20 mins | Serves : 3

Recipe Category: Dessert


Fresh Grated Coconut – 1/2 cup

Raw rice – 2 tbsp

Grated jaggery – 1/3 cup ( Adjust according to your taste)

Cardamom powder – 1/4 tsp

Milk –  1/3 cup

Cashew nuts and raisin – to taste

Ghee –  1/2 tsp



  • Wash and soak rice in warm water for 10 – 15 minutes
  • Grind soaked rice and grated coconut to a fine paste with 2/3 tbsp of water


  • Add 1 cup water to the ground paste and mix well 


  • In medium flame cook the mixture. Add cardamom powder and continue cooking.  Stir in between till its cooked (it turns from white to dull white to indicate the mixture is cooked)IMG_0386
  • Add grated jaggery and cook till it completely dissolves, and continue cooking for 2-3 minutes


  • Heat another pan with ghee and cook cashew and raisins till cashews are golden Brown


  • In low flame Add milk and cook for a minute and switch off. Add the cashews and raisin to the Payasam and serve Hot/Cold


My Notes:

  • Cardamom pods can be added instead of cardamom powder. Add cardamon while grinding coconut and rice if desire
  • Rice make the Payasam thick so adjust water/milk according to the desired consistency
  • If you think jaggery may have impurities, add jaggery and water in a separate pan cook till the jaggery melts. When it comes to room temperature strain them and add it to the Payasam
  • Traditionally jaggery (Palm sugar) is used but white/brown sugar can also be used
  • Make sure the coconut rice mixture is thin
  • Milk can be added after switching off
  • Instead of rice, rice flour can also be used

Vegetable Stew

Vegetable Stew

Ever since childhood days, whenever I think about Appam and idiyappam, coconut milk is the side dish that comes to mind, as that’s the one my Amma makes. Once we spent summer vacation at my Uncle’s place. My aunt cooked idiyappam and vegetable stew for breakfast and I loved it. From that day onwards I started cooking stew as an alternate side dish option to coconut milk for Aappam  and idiyappam.

Vegetable Stew

Preparation Time : 10 min | Cooking Time : 30 mins | Serves : 3

Recipe Category: Side dish


Carrot – 3 peeled and cut into slightly big chunks

Potato – 2 peeled and cut into big chunks

Beans – 10, abut 1  inch

Cauliflower – 1/2, cut into florets

Green Peas  – 1/4 cup

Onion – 1, sliced finely

Green chilly – 2 (Adjust According to your spice level)

Ginger- 1 tbsp, julian

Whole black pepper – 1/4 tsp (optional)

Cinnamon – 1/2 stick

Cloves – 2

Cardamom – 2

Thin coconut milk – 1 cup

Thick coconut milk –  3/4 cup

Curry leaves – few

Salt – as needed

Coconut oil – 2 tsp




For coconut Milk:

I used shredded frozen coconut, so used 2 cups of coconut. Add water to the coconut and grind it. Filter the grinded coconut, and the resultant milk is the thick coconut milk. Add water once again to the coconut residue and grind once more. Filter it again, and the resultant milk is the thin coconut milk.


  • Add 1 tsp of oil to another pan. Add Whole spices, ginger, and onions and saute for 2-3 minutes. Add green chilli and cook till onions become translucent


  • Add the cubed vegetables & combine well. Add thin coconut milk & salt, bring to boil, simmer and cook till vegetables are cooked. Add thick coconut milk and cook for 5 more minutes and switch off.

© TraditionallyModernFood





My Notes:

  • As I didnt add any thickening agent, vegetable stew is not thick like other gravy. However if you want it to be thick, you can add flour paste (All purpose flour/rice flour with water) or cashew paste. Add them after adding thick coconut milk
  • Can add garlic along with ginger
  • I used homemade coconut milk, but coconut milk bought from stores can also be used. If you are using the coconut milk from store, add little water to make the milk thinner

Pakarkaai Pitlai

Pavakkai Pitlai

Pakarkaai Pitlai (Bitter gourd pitlai) is yet another recipe from my Amma’s cook book. As a child, I always hated Bitter gourd, though its a healthy vegetable. If I see Bitter gourd in fridge, I go crazy, even without tasting it. I will say a big no. I always want some other dish when bitter gourd is cooked at home. One day I was with Amma in the kitchen when she was preparing pitlai. I saw her adding a tsp of jaggery to the dish. I was so happy seeing jaggery, and tasted it that day. After tasting the dish, I liked it, and surprisingly didn’t feel the bitterness. From that day onwards I started eating Pitali. Later when I started cooking, I realized even without Jaggery Pitalai tastes good. But i started liking the dish because of jaggery, so I add it even now 🙂

Pakarkaai Pitlai

Preparation Time : 10 mins | Soaking time : 4 hours |Cooking Time : 30 mins

Category:Rice Accompaniments

Ingredients :

Bitter gourd – 1

Turmeric powder – 1/8 tsp

Toor Dal – 1/2 cup

Chickpea/Channa – 1/3 cup (Soak Channa overnight/ in hot water for 4 hours)

Sambar Powder – 1 tsp

Curry Leaves – Few

Tamarind –  small Lemon size

Jaggery – 1 tsp

Asofedtida – generous pinch

Salt – as needed

For Grinding:

Grated Coconut – 1/4 cup

Red Chillies – 2 ( Adjust according to your spice level)

Coriander Seeds – 1 tbsp

Channa dal – 1/2 tbsp

For Seasoning:

Oil – 1 tsp

Mustard Seeds – 1/4 tsp

Fenugreek – 1/8 tsp



  • Soak the tamarind in warm water for 10  -15 minutes  and extract the pulp. Pressure cook the toor dal and channa, and keep it aside. (To save time I generally cook both together)
  • Dry roast red chillies, coriander seeds and channa dal till they turn golden brown color, and switch off. After it comes to room temperature add coconut and grind everything to a fine paste by adding water and keep it aside


  • Add turmeric powder and small pieces of tamrind (Adding both removes the bitterness) to bitter gourd and cook it (I microwaved for 5 minutes). Strain them


  • Add oil to the pan, when the Oil is hot add mustard seed and fenugreek. let it splutter. Add the cooked bitter gourd and saute for 3-4 mins. Add tamarind extract, Sambar powder, hing, turmeric powder and salt and allow it to boil for 5 minutes till the raw smell goes off tamarind


  • Add the cooked toor dal and channa, cook for 5-10 mins till you get the aroma. Add grounded paste and jaggery. When Bitter gourd  Pitlai starts boiling, switch off the flame


© TraditionallyModernFood