This  is the most versatile spice powder, popular in Karnataka, South India and offers itself as a tempting companion to Idlis, Dosas, Chapathis and Hot rice, a spicy spread for toasts and sandwiches.

 Dish type: Spice powder

Preparation time: 5 min

Roasting time: 10 min

Quantity: 100 gms


Bengal gram                       50 gms

Black gram                          50 gms

Red chillies                          8 nos.

Tamarind                             A small piece (curry leaf size)

Curry leaves                       2 sprigs

Dry coconut grated         100 gms

Asafoetida                          2 granules (pepper size)


Roast all the above ingredients separately over low flame in a pan. After each ingredient is roasted keep transferring to a plate. Let them cool thoroughly at room temparature.

Dhals have to be roasted till they turn light brown.

Dry coconut can be roasted last. When you are done with roasting all other ingredients, turn off the flame. Heat of the pan that still remains in the pan after switching off the flame is enough to roast dry coconut.

Curry leaves have to be washed and dried thoroughly (keeping it indoors) before roasting them.

Powder them coarsely. Store in an air tight container.


While preparing any masala powder, It is always advisable to dry fry ingredients separately  due to variance in size, thickness and texture of ingredients.


No tomatoes, no coconut….wow thank these onions. This spicy red faced chutney loves to give company to idlis, dosas, chapathis and is an equally good friend of hot rice too!

Dish Type:  Side Dish

Preparation Time:  10 min

Cooking time:  10 min

Serves:  4 persons


For dry frying:

Roasted gram             1 tbsp

Red chillies                  10 nos.

For sauting:

Oil                               1 tsp

Onions                         5 nos. (medium size)

Turmeric                     A pinch

Tamarind paste           ¼ tsp

Salt to taste                 1 tsp (approx.)

For grinding:

All of the above

Jaggery                        1 tbsp

Raw grated coconut    1 tbsp (optional)

For seasoning:

Oil                               1 tsp

Mustard seeds            ½ tsp

Red chillies                 1 no.

Curry leaves               1 sprig


Peel the skin of onions, cut them into cubes and keep aside.

Heat a medium sized kadai. Dry fry roasted gram and red chillies for 2 to 3 min.

Transfer it to a plate. When it cools, grind it coarsely.

In the same kadai, heat a tsp of oil. Saute onions. While sauting, add turmeric, salt and tamarind paste. Continue to saute till the onions turn transparent and light brown in colour.

Switch off the burner. Let the onions cool. Add these shallow fried onions, raw coconut and jaggery to the roasted gram powder in the mixie and continue grinding till they blend well to a smooth mix.

For seasoning, heat oil in the same kadai. Add mustard seeds. When they crackle, add broken red chilly and curry leaves. Now add the ground chutney and saute for a while till the raw smell of onions disappear. Transfer them to a bowl.

Onion chutney is now ready.

Also view “Beetroot Chutney”, “Chayote Chutney”, “Palak (Spinach) Chutney”, “Ridge Gourd Chutney”, “Raw Banana Chutney”, “Carrot (Gajar) Chutney


South Indians relish these chutneys traditionally mixing with steaming rice and ghee/coconut/til oil, but they can also be paired with dosas, idlis and starters too.

Dish Type: South Indian Side Dish 

Preparation Time: 10 min

Cooking time: 15 min

Serves: 5 persons


Ridge gourd                1 no. (about 10” long)

Black gram dhal          2 tsps

Green chillies              3 nos.

Tamarind paste           1 tsp

Raw coconut grated    ¼ of a coconut

Coriander leaves         1 cup

Salt to taste                 1 tsp (approx.)

For seasoning

Mustard seeds                        1/2 tsp

Asafoetida                   A pinch

Curry leaves                Few


Wash ridge gourd. Peel the skin and chop the gourd into small pieces.

Transfer this to a vessel. Add tamarind, slit geen chillies, salt and little water to this. Let it boil for 5 to 7 min. till the gourd pieces turn soft.

Drain the water and let the contents cool. Keep the water for later use.

Now grind the above contents in a mixie together with raw grated coconut and coriander leaves to a not so smooth consistency.

Transfer it to a bowl. The drained water can now be used to remove the remaining contents in the mixie jar.

For seasoning, heat a tsp of oil in a kadai on low flame. When heated add mustard seeds. When it crackles, add curry leaves. Switch off the burner.

Now add asafoetida immediately and pour this seasoning over the ground mixture in the bowl.

Ridge gourd chutney is now ready.


Chutney can also be prepared using the skin of ridge gourd. So, preserve the peels and try doing it following the same procedure as mentioned above.


This is a very simple recipe, colourful, yummy side dish and an ideal accompaniment with hot rice, dosas and rotis.

Dish Type:  Side Dish

Preparation Time:  10 min

Cooking time:  10 min

Serves:  4 persons


Beetroot                      1 no. (small size)

Green chillies              2 nos.

Black gram                  2 tsps

Red chillies                  2 nos.

Tamarind paste           ¼ tsp

Raw coconut grated    ½ cup

Salt to taste                 ½ tsp (approx..)


Wash beetroot, peel the skin and grate it.  Boil the grated beetroot along with tamarind paste and salt for about 10 min. Drain out the water and let the vegetable cool. Store the drained water in a container and resuse it the same day for making soup, sambar, rasam etc.

Roast black gram and green chillies in a kadai till black gram turns golden brown. Grind these coarsely with raw grated coconut and then again with boiled beetroot to a coarse consistency.

For seasoning, heat oil in a small skillet. When oil is heated, add mustard seeds. When they crackle, add broken red chillies. Switch off the burner. Immediately add asafetida and pour it over the chutney.

Beetroot chutney is now ready.

Also view in this blog “Beetroot Sambar


Ellu in kannada means Til, hence the name Ellina Chitra Anna or Til Rice (also known as Sesame Rice). This rice recipe is a gentle, very mildly spiced dish generally prepared during festivals as “prasadam”

Dish Type: South Indian Variety RiceEllina Chitra Anna

Preparation Time: 10 min

Cooking time: 15 min

Serves: 4 persons


Rice                 250 gms

For grinding

Raw coconut   1/4 of a coconut, grated

Green chillies  8 nos.

Tamarind        Small ½ lime size ball

For making til seeds powder

Til seeds                      2 tsp (white colored)

For seasoning

Oil                               2 tbsps

Peanuts                       1 tsp

Bengal gram dal         1 tsp

Urad dal                      1 tsp

Mustard seeds            1 tsp

Red chillies                  2 nos.

Curry leaves                1 sprig

Turmeric                     A pinch

Asafoetida                   A pinch

Salt to taste                 (approx 1 tsp)

Coriander leaves         1 tbsp


Cook rice in a pressure cooker using 500 ml water.

(Note: Water quantity should be just enough so that rice is cooked soft but not overcooked. If overcooked it becomes mashy and therefore difficult to blend well with the ground mixture and seasoning)

While rice is getting cooked….

Wash curry leaves, fresh coriander leaves, grate raw coconut.

Prepare till seeds powder and the grinding mixture. For this, switch on another burner of the gas stove. Keep a kadai on it and when it is heated, dry fry til seeds to golden brown colour. Transfer the fried till seeds on to a plate. When cooled, powder it coarsely and keep aside. Use the same grinder and grind raw grated coconut, green chillies and tamarind.

Keep the same kadai on the burner to prepare seasoning. When it is hot, put oil. When oil gets heated, add peanuts, Bengal gram dhal, urad dhal, mustard seeds in that order at intervals of few seconds. When mustard seeds crackle which happens immediately, add red chillies and curry leaves.

By now the rice would have been cooked. Spread the cooked rice on to a plate. Let it cool. Now add salt, turmeric and asafoetida to the cooked and cooled rice. Mix them well gently and slowly. Now add the ground coconut-chillies-tamarind mixture. Mix again. Top it with the prepared seasoning, coarsely ground till powder and garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves.

Ellina Chitra Anna is now ready


Rice has to be mixed very gently and slowly at all times.

Cashewnuts can be used in place of peanuts.