Tuesday 1 March 2016

Manathakkali Vathal Kuzhambu/Sun Dried Black Nightshade Gravy

Vatha Kuzhambu/Vathal Kuzhambu is a very popular, traditional and authentic kuzhambu prepared in Tamil Nadu. This  gravy is prepared with tamarind along with vatha kuzhambu powder or sambar powder or even with just redchilli powder and coriander powder. The gravy is cooked until it thickens and then any vathal of your choice is added. Vatral/vathal are nothing but sun dried berries or vegetables. The most commonly made vathal kuzhambus are manathakkali vathal kuzhambu, sundakkai vathal kuzhambu, vendakkai vathal, kathrikkai vathal, kothavarangai vathal etc. Manathakkali is known as “Makoy” in Hindi and “Black Nightshade” in English. Try out this manathakkali vathal kuzhambu and post yout comments. Meanwhile do not forget to check out other other traditional SouthIndian Gravy/Kuzhambu varieties here.

Here’s how to make Manathakkali Vathal Kuzhambu with step by step photos….


One small lemon sized ball
Manathakkali Vathal
4-5 tbsp
1 finely chopped
10-12 cloves
Red Chilli Powder
2 tsp
Coriander Powder
4 tsp
Turmeric Powder
½ tsp
As needed

For Seasoning

Gingelly Oil/Nallaennai
3 tbsp
Mustard Seeds/Kadugu
½ tsp
Cumin Seeds/Jeeragam
½ tsp
Fenugreek Seeds/Vendhayam
½ tsp
Curry Leaves
Asafoetida Powder/Perungayam
¼ tsp
 Preparation time: 5-7 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
Serves: 5-6

Written By: Priya Anandakumar


Soak the tamarind in about 2 cup of warm water for about 10- 15 min. Extract the juice by squeezing the tamarind and filter it into another bowl and keep it aside.

In a pan add about 1 tsp of oil and roast the manathakkali vathal or you can dry roast the vathal also. Transfer it to a plate and keep it for later.

Heat oil in a kadai, splutter the mustard seeds, after that add cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, curry leaves, asafoetida and saute for 10-15 sec.

Add onions, garlic and sauté until golden brown.

Add the tamarind extract, red chilli powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder, salt and let it boil in medium flame really well for about 15  min or until the gravy starts to get thick.

Now add the fried manathakkali vathal to the gravy and let it boil until oil starts to float. Now switch off the stove.

Delicious, spicy and tangy manathakkali vathal kuzhambu is ready to be enjoyed. Serve it with a bowl of steamed white rice, pappadam or appalam. It is also a perfect side dish for idlis, dosas etc.


I have used the regular onions, you can replace with pearl onions/sambar vengayam for better taste.

It is always best to use gingelly oil/nallennai but if you don’t get it in the place you reside then you can replace it with sunflower oil.

If you have vadagam you can use it for tempering, it gives extraordinary taste and flavour to the kuzhambu.

Other South Indian Kuzhambu varieties that might be of your interest...

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1 comment:

Hello everybody,
Thank you very much for stopping by my blog. Your comments are very precious and I treasure them a lot. Please leave your valuable comments and suggestions here. All our content & photos are copyright protected. a lot of time and effort is spent in researching, developing, testing and photographing recipes. please do not copy. as a blogger, if you you want to adapt this recipe or make a youtube video, then please write the recipe in your own words and give a clickable link back to the recipe on this url.
Priya Anandakumar