One of my favorites from my home town – “Kumbakonam Kadappa”

I hail from Kumbakonam, a small and beautiful town in Southern India home to the Mahamaham. It is an important pilgrim destination with more than ten Vaishnavaite and Shaivaite temples.The town, of course has its own unique contributions to south Indian cuisine. Its most famous for its filter coffee and beetle leaves. But thats not all! A mouthwatering, and one of my personal favorites is a spicy entree called the “Kumbakonam kadappa”. It tastes a lot like kurma because of the whole spices and fennel seeds, but adding moong dhal balances the flavor.



Onion – 1 cup (thin slices)

Potato – 2 medium sized

Green chilli – 3

Moong dhal – ½ cup

Cumin seeds – ½ tsp

Curry leaves – 4-5

Corriander leaves – garnish

Oil – 2 tsp

Salt – to taste


Coconut – 2 tbsp

Fennel seeds – 1 tsp

Poppy seeds – ½ tsp

Garlic – 2 pods

(Grind these into a smooth paste with water)

Whole spices:

Cloves- 2 -3

bay leaf – 1

cinnamon –  ½ inch stick

  1. Pressure cook moong dhal along with potatoes. Once cooked mash the dhal-potato mixture. Make sure you don’t completely mash the potatoes, leave some chunky pieces.
  2. In a pan add 2 tsp of cooking oil (either canola or vegetable oil) and add cumin seeds along with all the whole spices and curry leaves.
  3. Now add sliced onion and green chilli and saute till onion turns golden brown
  4. Add masala paste (grind coconut, garlic, fennel and poppy seed into a smooth paste) and cook for about 4-5 minutes.
  5. At this point throw in the diced tmatoes and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
  6. Add moong dhal and potato mixture along with 2 cups of watera and allow the potato to incorporate all the spices.
  7. Garnish with coriander leaves and squeeze in a dash of lime at the very end.



2 Comments Add yours

  1. says:

    Hey Dr Dancer Chef

    Thanks for coming back to food

    Yes do I remember this sambar cum kuruma type.

    It brings back my memory of “Hotel Mangalambika’s” -Kal dosai n Kadappa Combo which is inside the Lord Kumbeshwarar sannathi commercial complex @ KMU.

    Good post,given the crisp information info it carries along with this aunthetic food delight.

    Sent on my BlackBerry® from Vodafone

  2. Thank you Prabhu! Even I missed blogging. But too many dance and work commitments but hoping to post more often 🙂

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