Urulai Madras Kaarakari

They say simple home-cooked food is the toughest to master. Almost every South Indian household will have a variation of the ubiquitous potato, ranging from mashed potatoes Podimas, to the favourite potato fry. The seemingly simply Urulai Madras Karakari showed us there’s no such thing as perfecting a recipe, and you have to better yourself every time! Prema Srinivasan, has however, through a rigorous process of research and trial, perfected the recipe. Her book ‘Pure Vegetarian’ is a cultural, sociological and aesthetic exposition on vegetarian food. Follow her recipe for the Urulai Madras Karakari to the ‘T’, and the result will inevitably be impressive. For those who want to know more about the book Click on Pure Vegetarian


Urulai Madras Kaara Kari – Spiced potato curry, unique to Madras

Serves – 6-8


  • Baby potatoes/ whole potato cubed (boiled): 1 Kg
  • Curry leaves – 8-10
  • Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
  • Urad Dhal – 1 tsp
  • Sesame oil – 3 tbsp

Spices for grinding: CUP 1:

  • Coriander seeds – 4 tsp
  • Red chilly (long) – 5 nos
  • Asafoteida – 1/s tsp
  • Turmeric – 1/2 tsp
  • Salt – to taste
  • Water – 4 tbsp

Grind the above ingredients mentioned under ‘CUP 1’ into a fine paste. Coat the potatoes with this paste and let it marinade for 30 mins. Heat oil in a kadai/wok, add hing/ asafoetida and mustard. Once the mustard splutters, add urad dhal and saute till golden brown. Add the marinated potatoes and curry leaves. Saute till the edges are finely roasted.

My tip: Those who love a crisp version of this can add some rice flour while sautéing the potatoes. Once done, remove from heat and serve. This goes really well with bisi bele bhath (make sure you add a dollop of ghee to it)


About Author

The musings of two Chennaiites seeking to discover the world through food and travel. As they open themselves up to adventure, the accompanying puliyogare, travels well and ensures that the idea of home is never lost

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