Authentic Recipes from the Kitchens of Shriya, Nithu & Arthi!

Ennai Kathirikkai Kuzhambu – Spicy Brinjal Curry

Ennai Kathirikkai Kuzhambu or Kulambu is one of the delicious South Indian dishes served with steamed rice. This can also be served with idly/dosa. Brinjal or eggplant is shallow fried and cooked in a tangy and spicy gravy. Also check out out other Kuzhambu recipes.


  • Small or medium size brinjal or eggplants – 7 or 8
  • Small onions or shallots – 8
  • Tomato – 1
  • Garlic pods – 4
  • A few curry leaves
  • Mustard seeds – 1tsp
  • Urad dal – 1 tsp
  • Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp
  • Fennel seeds – 1/2 tsp
  • Methi seeds (Fenugreek) – 1/4 tsp
  • Sesame seeds – 1 tsp
  • Dried red chilies – 4
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Sambar powder – 2 tbsp
  • Tamarind juice – 1 and 1/2 cups (extracted from a small lime size of tamarind)
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil – 2 tbsp (preferably┬ásesame oil)

Masala to grind:

  • Coriander seeds – 1 tsp
  • Frozen or fresh shredded coconut – 2 tbsp

 Method of Preparation:

  • Cut the stem off and slit brinjal into 4 keeping the bottom portion in tact.
  • Heat oil in a pan or kadai and add mustard seeds.
  • When it splutters add cumin seeds, fennel seeds, methi seeds, curry leaves, sesame seeds, urad dal, garlic and red chilies. Saute for a couple of minutes.
  • Coat brinjal with oil and transfer it to a microwave safe bowl. Sprinkle some water and microwave it on high for 3 to 4 minutes or until brinjal becomes soft.
  • Add onions to the pan and saute with a little salt until it becomes translucent and soft followed by chopped tomatoes.
  • Once tomatoes are cooked, add brinjal and turmeric powder and saute for about 10 minutes until it gets slightly browned and cooked.
  • Add sambar powder, mix well and then add tamarind juice.
  • Let it boil over medium heat until the raw smell of tamarind and sambar powder is gone (about 6 to 8 minutes).

  • Heat a tsp of oil in a separate pan and add coriander seeds.
  • When it splutters add coconut and turn off the heat. Grind it to a fine powder.
  • Add this to the boiling mixture with some more water and salt. Make sure to check for salt before adding.
  • Let it cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until it becomes a thick gravy.
  • Ennai Kathirikkai Kuzhambu is ready. Serve hot with rice.

Note: Microwaving brinjal reduces the cooking time. But if you prefer not to do it, you can add it to the pan and saute it until it becomes cooked and brown.

One Comment

  1. thanks much! great recipe and so easy!

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