December 15, 2005

Moluvu kolumbu aka Black pepper sauce

We assume that it is going to be a curry week at My Dhaba. We have already received few recipe requests on curries. Let us begin the curry journey with moluvu kolumbu aka the black pepper sauce.

Black pepper is commonly used in Indian cooking, and it is an established fact that it is a cure for a host of diseases. It is a cure for cough due to congestion of phlegm, dandruff, chronic diarrhea, blisters on the body, gastric catarrh, rheumatism, nausea, anorexia, piles, venerial diseases, etc. These peppers, which are like tiny berries, are black because they are dried with the skin on.

Now on the second major ingredient of this dish, the coriander seeds - there are many dishes that are made from all parts of India that goes with either the fresh leaves or the seeds of coriander (dhaniya). The digestive action of the seed is particularly effective with carbohydrates. Coriander leaf is useful in distaste for food, dyspepsia, and billiousness. It helps to improve semen.

Finally, moluvu kolumbu is best suitable for those days when we have a vague rheumatic aching in the limbs. Here is the recipe for moluvu kolumbu. Enjoy!

Moluvu kolumbu recipe
Serves - 4
Preparation time - 20 minutes

Black peppercorns – 1 tablespoon
Coriander seeds or powder – 2 tablespoons
Red chilli – 2, medium size, medium hot ones (or use 1 teaspoon powder)
Tumeric powder – ½ teaspoon
Coconut – a quarter, 2-3 inch piece, fresh
Tamarind extract – 3 tablespoons
Salt – 1 teaspoon or adjusted to taste (1-1/2 teaspoons is just fine)
Onions – 2, large, finely sliced
Tomato – 1, big, fully ripe, finely chopped
Garlic – 4 beads, finely sliced and slightly crushed
Curry leaves – a sprig
Jaggery – 2-3 tablespoons, powdered
Oil + ghee – 2+2 teaspoons

Method: Grind the blackpeppercorns, coconut, coriander seeds, and red chillies to a smooth paste. Dilute this paste with 2 cupfuls of water, add turmeric powder, tamarind extract, and salt, and mix well. Heat a flat-bottomed vessel and pour in the oil and ghee mix. When very hot, add the onions, garlic, and curry leaves. Saute until the onions are limp and add tomotoes. Saute till the oil separates from the tomatoes. Add the black pepper batter into it. Boil over moderate heat till the raw smell goes away. It takes approx 12-15 minutes. Add the jaggery powder and subsimmer over low heat till oil and ghee shows up on the surface or until the sauce is thickish to a honey-like consistency. Serve it hot with plain boiled rice with a teaspoon of pure ghee added to each individual serving. Suitable accompaniments along with moluvu kolumbu are hard boiled eggs, pappadams, or any other vegetable subjis.



Anonymous paz said...

Hi VK,

I have some questions. ;-)

If I don't have fresh coconut, is a substitution acceptable?

What are curry leaves? Is there a substution for it if I can't find it?

And last, what's jaggery -- a spice?



Blogger Priya Bhaskaran said...

VKN, What does Moluvu means??

Blogger vkn said...

Ok Paz one by one,

Fresh coconut substitute - you may try this out with packaged coconut thick milk.

Curry leaves give a distinct aroma to this dish, can go without this too. We do not think there is a substitute for this.

Jaggery is Indian brown sugar, the sugar-cane juice, refined crudely and solidified into various shapes.

Priya - Moluvu is in traditional Tamil way, the same molagu or melagu or mulagu :-) It represents black pepper in this dish

Blogger aspiring annapoorna said...


This curry series is SUCH a good idea. I had no idea that something like your moluvu kuzhambu existed...I am familiar with the koottus, and sambars and moru-kuzhambus, and chappai-kuzhambus...but this was a first. Its also something I know I will love!! Look forward to trying it out.

Anonymous Jill said...

Hi ##NAME##. I would like to make friends with people who enjoy indian cookery. I've joined this site (indian cookery) to try to meet some new friends but I wondered if you knew of any other such sites.
Many thanks

Anonymous Suma said...

Wow....this curry tastes simply divine!! thanks for a lovely recipe.


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