Thiruvathirai is a festival celebrated by tamilians in the marghazi month of tamil calender. It is a festival to celeberate the tandava(cosmic dance) performed my lord Shiva (Nataraja). This day is also known to be Lord shiva’s birthday star “arudhra”,hence also called as arudhra darshanam.
Kali and thalaga kozhumbu are the popular prasadams made to mark this day. Thalaga kozhumbu or thalagam is a spicy vegetable gravy which goes very well with the sweet rice flour dish called Kali.Thalagam is also called “ezhu kari”because seven vegetables are used to make this gravy(ezhu in tamil means seven). However one can use 5 or 7 vegetables for this kozhumbu. Some also call this as “ericha kootu” because this is prepared in a large quantity and everytime is reheated before serving. The taste gets better when stored and consumed. You can store this for around 3 days.
So , I made this prasadams on thiruvathirai day which fell on 10th of january this year.I am late posting this one. However I did not want to miss it.
- Wash the rice. Drain the water and keep it in a sieve for 10 to 15 minutes. Now, place the rice in a pan and roast it till it becomes a light red in colour(kind of pinkish). Roast the mung dal till it becomes a light brown. Grind the rice and dal to a fine flour.
- Add the jaggery to 2 cups of water. After it melts, allow it to boil. Then add the ground rice dal mixture to it. Keep stirring till it becomes a thick mass. Switch off the flame.
- Heat the ghee and roast the cashews till they turn brown. Add this to the kali. Mix well.
- Soak the tamarind in 2 cups of warm water for 10 minutes. Squeeze out the juice. Filter the tamarind water.
- Heat little oil in a pan. Add the dried red chillies, til,tuvar dal and channa dal. Saute till they turn a light brown. Cool and grind to a fine powder.
- Cut the vegetables to chunks. Pour the tamarind water over it. Add salt and turmeric powder. Cook the vegetables till it turns tender. Then add the ground paste. Mix well and cook till the consistency is thick.
- Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds. Then add the grated coconut. Toast the coconut till they turn brown. Add this to the kozhumbu and mix well.
Serve the kali with thalaga kozhumbu.