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Thalagam/Thalatham/Thalatha Kuzhambu/Ericha Kuzhambu - A special side dish for Ven Pongal on Pongal Day

posted 12 Jan 2015, 04:08 by R A   [ updated 12 Jan 2015, 04:13 ]
This is a special side dish made on Pongal. For this only the following vegetables are used and these vegetables are a must.

White pumpin - 100 gms
Sweet Potato - 100 gms
Yellow pumpkin - 100 gms
Raw plantain - 1 no.
Drumstick - 1 no.
Avarai - 100 gms.
Green Chilly - 2 nos
Tamarind paste - 2 spoons
Grated coconut - 1/2 cup
Bengal gram - 2 tbs
Coriander seeds - 4 tbsp
Urad dal - 1 tbsp
Red chillies - 8 to 12 nos
Pea nut - 2 tbsp
sesame seeds - 1 tbsp
Curry Leaves - a few
Fenu greek seeds - 1/2 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Gingely Oil - 2 tbsp
Turmeric powder - 1 pinch
Asafodeita - 1 pinch
Salt to taste

Dry roast the sesame seeds separately till they splutter. When cool grind it separately and keep aside.

Heat 1 tbsp of oil and fry the grated coconut separately. Heat another tbsp of oil and fry coriander seeds, bengal gram, peanut and 6 red chillies adding one by one. When they turn golden brown in colour remove and let it cool. Grind it along with the fried coconut.

Cut all the vegetables into small cubes. Heat 2 cups of water in a shallow vessel. Add salt, turmeric powder, tamarind paste. Let it come to a boil and when the raw smell of the tamarind goes add the cut vegetables cover and reduce the flame. Let the vegetables get cooked soft. Add the ground paste and a cup of water. Mix thoroughly and bring it to a boil. Ensure that it doesnot settle at the bottom. Remove from flame.

Temper mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, green chillies, remaining red chillies. Cut curry leaves and spread it on the thalatam. Pour the tempering on top of the curry leaves. Mix well and serve it with Ven Pongal on Pongal day.

If this thalatham is left, the next day heat 2 to 3 tbsp of gingely oil and fry it well. Add the left over rasam, or kuzhambu or vathakuzhambu or koottu that is made on the next day. In olden days and also in villages, the kuzhambu is kept in a kalchatti and the flame keeps burning. It is had for 3 to 4 days. This is called as Ericha Kuzhambu and it tastes heavenly. 

This can be made as a sambar too by adding cooked thuvar dal. But if Thuvar Dal is added this need to be finished on the same day.