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Kadhi in an earthen pot

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Kadhi is a sour-n-sweet dish made from buttermilk or yogurt. The basic recipe is to add a thickening agent like besan to buttermilk and give this a tempering of mustard seeds, green chillies , turmeric and curry leaves. The recipe gets customized in different places and cultures. Gujarati kadhi tastes mildly sweet and has pakodis or vegetable dumplings in it. In North Karnataka (where I come from) we skip the pakodis. I love the way my Mom makes it – sweet, sour Palade (that’s what we call it), which can be had with rice or sipped as is. When I first tasted the Kadhi that my mother-in-law made, I was in for a surprise. While my Mom’s variety is mild in taste, my mother-in-law’s version was an explosion of all possible tastes in the mouth. She uses raw spices and this gives the Kadhi a totally different taste. This, in my opinion, is better as a standalone drink, it doesn’t taste that great with rice.

The recipe that my mother-in-law follows is supposedly very common in Jalgaon or Khandesh. Kadhi appears regularly in their diet and is even made in weddings. Since most weddings in Jalgaon happen in summer, Kadhi is offered to guests as a cooling drink – follow the recipe and just keep the Kadhi in a refrigerator and there it is as a thirst quencher. Buttermilk is of course good in beating the summer heat – add a few spices to it and the Kadhi goes down really well.

I usually make Kadhi in a normal steel vessel, but after the recommendation from my mother-in-law, I tried making it in an earthen pot. She is right, Kadhi tastes totally different and has that mild muddy taste to it. You can make it in any vessel you want – you will enjoy it all the same. If you choose to use an earthen pot, make the tempering in a steel vessel, pour in the buttermilk and then pour the contents to the earthen pot. Bring the Kadhi to a boil in the earthen pot. You can make the tempering in an earthen pot, I am sure, but I have not tried it.

Kadhi Simmering

Kadhi – Jalgaon Style
Serves 2

For Buttermilk:

1 cup Curd or Yogurt or 2 cups of Buttermilk
1 tsp Jowar flour (You can skip this if you don’t have it. Substitute with besan)
1 tsp Besan or Chickpea flour (2 tsp if you don’t have Jowar flour)
1/2 tsp Jeera powder
A pinch of Garam Masala
Salt to taste
3-4 Citric acid crystals, optional

For Tempering:

1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
1/2 Jeera
4 Peppercorns
4 Methi seeds
4 Clover
1 tsp Dagad phool
5-6 Garlic cloves, finely cut
3-4 Green chillies, finely cut
4-5 Curry leaves, cut


1. Add water to yogurt/curd and whisk to make buttermilk.
2. Add jowar flour, besan, garam masala, jeera powder and salt. Whisk again.

3. Heat oil in a vessel. Wait till the oil is piping hot, I mean real hot.
4. Gather all these ingredients in a big enough table spoon – mustard seeds, jeera, peppercorns, garlic,  clover, methi seeds, dagad phool, green chillies and curry leaves. When the oil is hot enough, then toss all these at once into the vessel and cover the vessel.
5. Keep the vessel covered and let the flame be high. After 1-2 minutes, the aroma of spices will begin to spread. Don’t worry if you smell something burnt. The key to this Kadhi is the burnt tempering.
6. Pour in the buttermilk to the vessel. Keep the vessel covered. You may want to switch on your chimney now.
7. Bring the Kadhi to a boil – on low flame and with frequent stirrings. The latter part is very important – if you don’t stir often enough, the buttermilk will lose its homogeneity.
8. Add salt. Add citric acid crystals if the buttermilk is not sour enough.
9. Garnish with coriander and enjoy it hot. Alternatively, bring Kadhi to room temperature, refrigerate it and enjoy it cold.

Kadhi All Ready

I am sending this post to Thanda Mela hosted by Srivalli.


Written by A

April 27, 2010 at 6:25 am

Posted in cooking, Drink, food

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