Tamarind Rice Recipe | How To Make Tamarind Rice

Tamarind Rice Recipe pinit

Pulihora is a traditional rice preparation in Southern India, which usually has tamarind or kokum as its main ingredient. With the tangy sourness of either the fruit itself (tamarind) or its extracts made from boiling and drying out tart unripe fruits (kokum), this dish can be described to have two different tastes- one spicier with added spices like chilli powder, pomegranate seeds, coriander leaf for garnish; while another being less heavy on spice but still zesty due to an addition of fresh vegetables such as green beans and winter melon throughout the cooking process. The dishes also include cooked long-grain white basmati rice that is soaked overnight.

Difficulty: Intermediate Prep Time 45 min Cook Time 20 min Total Time 1 hr 5 mins
Servings: 2 Calories: 233
Best Season: Suitable throughout the year


Pulihora or Tamarind Rice is generally prepared in most of the festivals of southern India. Its a tangy flavoured rice mixed in tamarind sauce and spices and garnished with roasted peanuts and tastes great with plain yogurt and appadam (papad).





  1. Heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan. Add the mustard seeds and let them splutter. Now add groundnuts and cashewnuts and fry them. Then add dry red chillies, cumin seeds, channa dal, urad dal and fry for 1 minute till light brown.

  2. Now add the slit green chillis, asafoetida and curry leaves and fry for 10 seconds.

  3. Now make tamarind extract by soaking tamarind into boiling water for 20 minutes, and then mashing the tamarind with your fingers, so that as much of the pulp comes out as possible from the fiber. Now pour this mashed mixture and its liquid into a strainer placed over an empty bowl. Firmly press down on the tamarind pulp with your fingers until nothing but seeds and fiber are left in the strainer.

  4. Add this tamarind extract, salt, turmeric powder, jaggery and cook till the raw smell disappears (approx 10-15 minutes) and then remove it from heat.

  5. Add this paste to the rice and mix well. Adjust salt.

  6. Serve with plain yoghurt.

  7. Tamarind Rice is ready to serve.


You can store this cooked tamarind paste in an air tight container for almost 7-10 days and mix it with rice whenever you wish to eat.

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