Milagai Podi

2015-02-27 08.58.03

I love podi. I could happily live on podi if my family would just let me be.

To be absolutely honest, the only reason I go through the hassle of making dosas and idlies, is to have a suitable vehicle worthy of this wonderful magical powder. Podi and nallannai…oh…Lord have mercy. My heart beats faster just thinking about it.

Anyways, this is my version below. I think it’s perfect as it is, but feel free to tweak it if you like (just don’t tell me about it or I will have to kill you).

You’ll need:

  • 1 cup urad dal
  • 1 cup channa dal
  • 6 dried red chillies (adjust as needed)
  • 10 stalks curry leaves (remove stalks)
  • 2 large cloves garlic (peeled and sliced finely)
  • 1/2 teaspoon hing
  • 2 teaspoons whole black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons sesame seeds
  • 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  • 3 tablespoons desiccated coconut
  • 2 tablespoons jaggery
  • 3 tablespoons red chili powder (adjust as needed)
  • sugar (to taste)
  • salt (to taste)
  • Gingelly oil (as needed)


Heat 3 tablespoons of oil, roast urad and channa dal until golden. Remove from heat. In the same oil, add dried red chilies, curry leaves and garlic. Fry until crisp. Remove and set aside. Add a little more oil to the pan if needed, add hing, whole black pepper, sesame seeds, coriander seeds and fenugreek seeds. Roast until fragrant. Remove and set aside.

Add coconut and toast until golden. Mix all the fried ingredients in a large tray or bowl. Allow to cool completely.

Once cooled, in a grinder, add the mixed ingredients, jaggery, salt, sugar and grind until you get a fine powder. Add chili powder, more salt and sugar as needed. Sieve the mixture to remove any crunchy bits (this step is optional, but I prefer a really fine podi). Spread on a try and allow to cool and dry out completely.

I store just enough for a week in the fridge in an air tight bottle. The rest I place in a zip lock bag in the freezer. This podi has coconut and oil, so you can’t store it forever – but why would you?

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