Pidikarnai, the best medicine for Constipation
Pidikarnai is a root vegetable often confused with seppan kizhangu (Sticky potato), Senai Kizhangu (Elephant foot /Yam). This is a different vegetable and is known as a good medicine for people prone to constipation due to its fibrous nature and constituents. I am providing a recipe for making a Kuzhambu (gravy) out of it and this particular one is native of Tanjore cuisine passed on for generations. I did search if there were any of this on the net and did not find it so thought it to be a suitable opportunity to present it to people interested in preparing gravy with this vegetable. Let me tell you, it tastes yummy with rice.
Here is my recipe passed on by my grand mother –
1. Pidikarnai – 250 gms
2. Tamarind – a small lemon sized soaked
To Roast and Grind
3. Toor dal – 2 tsp
4. Chana Dal – 1/2 tsp
5. Urad Dal – 1/2 tsp
6. Red Chilli – 5-6 (depends on taste)
7. Pepper – 1/4 tsp
8. Fenugreek – 1/4 tsp
9. jeera – 1/4 tsp
10. Coriander seeds – 1/4 tsp
11. Curry Leaves
12. Mustard Seeds – 1/2 tsp
13. Asafoetida (Hing)
Heat the kadai. First add red chillies and fenugreek, followed by chana dal, urad dal, coriander seeds, toor dal and finally jeera and pepper. Cool it and make a fine powder.
Pidikaranai should be pressure cooked like potato but with a small piece of tamarind. If you miss this, you will have itching in the mouth and throat. Once cooked, peel the skin of Pidikarnai and mash it.
Extract Tamarind water from soaked tamarind and get the tamarind water ready. Boil it on the stove with required salt and turmeric powder. Once the raw smell of Tamarind is off, add the pidikarnai mashed and allow it to boil for 2 -3 minutes.
Now add the ground powder and mix well and allow this mixture to boil for a minute till the powder settles in the gravy without lumps. Switch off.
Add oil and spurt mustard seeds and curry leaves with asafoetida in a separate kadai and add it to the gravy.
This is a excellent side dish for Rice and tastes good when eaten hot.