Puli (Tamarind) Pongal

Puli Pongal, also known as Tamarind Pongal, is a flavorful and tangy dish originating from South India. Traditionally served for breakfast, it is also commonly prepared for dinner or as an evening snack. The dish is primarily made from rice and tamarind juice, lending it a unique, tangy taste. Its flavor profile is enhanced with a medley of spices, including mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, red chillies, and asafoetida.

The preparation begins with frying these spices, along with peanuts and dhals, prior to adding the tamarind juice, turmeric powder, and salt. Once boiling, rice rava is incorporated, and the mixture is cooked until it thickens. The final touch is a specially prepared ground spice powder and a drizzle of oil. Puli Pongal can be enjoyed as a standalone dish or paired with any curd pachadi or Thuvaiyal for a more complete meal.

Puli (Tamarind) Pongal

Recipe by S Kamala
5.0 from 1 vote
Course: BreakfastCuisine: Indian, TamilDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time



This dish is made with broken rice (Rice Rava) and tamarind. Can be served for dinner or as an evening snack accompanied with any Curd Raita or Thuvaiyal.


  • Broken rice (Rice Rava) – 1 cup

  • Tamarind – a small lemon size

  • Turmeric Powder – 1/4 teaspoon

  • To roast and powder:
  • Red chilly – 1

  • Coriander seeds – 1 teaspoon

  • Bengal gram dhal – 1 teaspoon

  • Fenugreek seeds – ¼ teaspoon

  • For Seasoning:
  • Gingelly Oil – 3 or 4 tablespoon

  • Mustard – Half teaspoon

  • Red chillies – 2

  • Bengal Gram Dhal – 1 teaspoon

  • Urad Dhal – 1 teaspoon

  • Roasted Peanut – 1 tablespoon

  • Asafoetida powder – ¼ teaspoon

  • Curry leaves – few

  • Salt – 1 teaspoon or as per taste


  • Start by soaking the tamarind in water. Squeeze to extract the juice, then add more water and repeat the process until you have a total of four cups of tamarind water.
  • In a small kadai, add a teaspoon of oil and fry the Bengal gram dhal, Urad Dhal, coriander seeds, fenugreek seeds, and one red chilli. Allow this mixture to cool, then grind it into a powder. Set this aside for later use.
  • In a separate kadai, heat some oil and add mustard seeds. Once the mustard seeds begin to pop, add Bengal gram dhal, peanuts, and Urad dhal. Fry this mixture until it turns a light brown color.
  • Next, add ground red chillies, asafoetida powder, and curry leaves, frying for a brief period. Following this, incorporate the tamarind juice along with turmeric powder and salt. Allow the mixture to boil over medium heat.
  • Once it begins to boil, add the rice rava, stirring well. Cover the kadai with a lid and continue cooking over medium heat.
  • When the mixture is well-cooked and thick, stir in the ground spice powder that you set aside earlier. Mix well to ensure it’s evenly distributed.
  • For the final step, add a teaspoon of oil, stirring once more before removing the kadai from heat.

Recipe Video


  • Rice Rava is available at stores and you can use it.
  • If you do not have rice rava, then grind a cup of rice in a mixie grinder to a rava consistency and use it.

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