This vendakkai kootu is very common in my home and is a favorite among my kids. Not many make kootu with ladies finger. If you have not tried making this kootu, I recommend you to try this dish. It is called vendakkai puli kootu as we use tamarind for preparing this. This is my mother's style of making vendakkai kootu with tomatoes. My aunty makes vendakkai puli pachadi without tomatoes but my kids do not like that. Today let us learn how to make Okra/Ladies finger kootu or vendakkai puli kootu following this easy recipe with step wise pictures.
Wash ladies finger well and wipe it dry otherwise it will be sticky. Discard the head and the tail and cut it into roundels.
Soak tamarind in hot water for 20 minutes and extract 1 cup of diluted tamarind water. Discard the pulp. If using tamarind paste, dilute 3/4 tsp of paste with a cup of water. You do not need much tamarind for this dish.
Heat oil in a kadai, add mustard seeds, when it splutters, add hing and curry leaves.
Then add ladies finger, turmeric powder, sambar powder, green chillies, salt needed and cook on medium heat.
When the ladies finger is three fourth cooked, add finely chopped tomatoes and cook for 2-3 minutes.
Then add diluted tamarind extract and boil well on medium heat till the raw flavor goes.
Mix 1 tsp of rice flour with 1/4 cup of water without lumps. It is added to thicken the kootu slightly. Add the rice flour mixture to the kootu and cook on medium heat for another 5 minutes and switch off the heat. The consistency of this vendakkai kootu should neither be thick nor too thin.
Garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves and serve as a side dish for rasam or sambar or you can make any thogayal along with this. Thuvaiyal and kootu is a good combination.
Note - If you kootu is tangy and very sour, you have added more tamarind. Reduce the tamarind the next time when you make this kootu. Tamarind water should be very thin.
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