Paruppu Urundai Kulambu | How to Prepare Paruppu Urundai Kulambu Recipe

Paruppu urundai kozhambhu

This is a very traditional dish from Tamil Nadu. This dish is rich in proteins. My mom used to make this quite often but now with the time constraint, we hardly cook this. I come from a large family with lots of cousins. This was always made in a huge quantity when the whole lot of us were around.

Lentil dumplings have to be steam cooked before adding it to the tamarind-coconut sauce. The simple spicy steamed lentil balls have a heavenly taste. We love it so much so that every time one of us will run to the kitchen and nick a few balls to the terrace and gobble them before anyone can find it. We really enjoy irritating our grandmom during its cooking and she would chase us away till the entrance of the house. The people in the neighbourhood would tease that her voice is heard even at the other end of the village. This dish always reminds me of my good old childhood days and is very close to my heart.

Recommended: Diwali suzhiyan – Deep fried dumplings with coconut, lentils and jaggery

Paruppu urundai kozhambhu

Paruppu urundai kuzhambhu Recipe

It is called as “Paruppu Urundai Kuzhambhu” where the steam cooked lentil balls are added into the hot tamarind-coconut gravy and are allowed to cook in it. The lentil balls cook perfectly in the hot bubbling gravy within few minutes. The gravy taste great cos the juices gives it a deep aroma and flavour. Paruppu (in Tamil language) means lentil; Urundai (in Tamil language) means ball and Kuzhambhu (yet another tamil word) means gravy. This is a very special dish in my house and we crave for it often. This dish was passed on from my great grandmum to my grandmum then to my mom n now to ME.
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: South Indian
Keyword: Lentil balls in aromatic tamarind sauce, Paruppu urundai kozhambhu
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4
Author: Advika Menon


For the lentil balls:

  • 1/2 cup toor dhal
  • 1/2 cup channa dhal
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup grated coconut
  • 3 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 coriander powder
  • 1 inch chopped ginger
  • 10-12 curry leaves
  • 2 tsp chopped corainder leaves
  • salt

For the Sauce:

  • 1 lemon size tamarind extract
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup grated coconut
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 2 tsp vadagam
  • 5-6 curry leaves


Method For the lentil balls:

  • Soak the dhals in water for 3 hrs. Drain the water completely and grind them into a thick paste.
  • Add the onions, garlic, coconut, chilli powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, ginger, curry leaves, coriander leaves, salt.
  • Mix them thoroughly and roll them into small balls. Steam cook them and keep aside.

For the sauce:

  • Grind the grated coconut and fennel seeds into a fine paste and keep aside.
  • Heat oil in a kadai. Add the vadagam and cook for a min.
  • Now add the onions and saute them for 2-3min.
  • Add the tamarind extract and coconut paste. Add the turmeric powder, chilli powder and coriander powder. Simmer the flame. Cook till the raw smell disappears.
  • Add the curry leaves and bring the gravy to a boil.
  • Gently add the steam cooked lentil balls in a single layer . Cook on a low flame with the lid on for about 5-10 min. Give it a gentle stir every 2 min and serve warm with hot rice.


It tastes great with dosa/idly/appam too!

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