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Saturday, January 23, 2010

Chettinad Thalakkari Kuzhambu (Chettinad lamb head curry)

Yet another chettinad special .This is very famous dish in the ever mushrooming chettinad restaurants in the city. I always wanted to try this and blog the recipe. Since I was not sure of the exact chettinad recipe, I had to wait till I attend the Pothu padappu (family group prayer) where they sacrifice a goat. The meat is cooked with pepper instead of chili powder and offered to the family deity along with other dishes. They call it as milagu Kari kuzhambu. Though watery, it will have a taste of its own.
Thalakkari is cooked for next day’s breakfast and served as a side dish for idly. They serve one head curry for 50 people with no compromise in taste. This time I found out the recipe from the old ladies at home .I tried it today and it was almost perfect
Lamb head-1 cleaned and cut into medium sized pieces (brain should be separated)
Small onion-20
Kuzhambu milagai thool-2 table spoons
Coriander powder- 2 table spoon
Ginger garlic paste-2 teaspoons
Turmeric powder-1 teaspoon
For Grinding
Grated coconut-4 table spoons
Kas kas- 1 teaspoon or Cashews-6
Chili powder-1 teaspoon
Fennel seed-1 teaspoon
Pottu kadalai-1 table spoon
Pressure cook the head pieces adding a cup of water, a teaspoon of turmeric and little salt for 10 to 12 minutes in medium fire. Meantime grind the items to be grinded. Mince the onions and tomato. Cut the brinjal and potato into small square pieces. This is added to give thickness to the gravy.
Once the mutton gets cooked, open the cooker and separate the gravy part. Keep the kadai in the stove. In one table spoon of oil season the curry with a small piece of cinnamon, 2 cardamoms, small brinji leaf and a teaspoon of fennel seed along with little curry leaf. Add the minced onion and tomatoes one by one and sauté for a while. Add the ginger garlic paste now and sauté nicely without gap as the paste will stick to the kadai if left without care. Now add the brinjal and tomato pieces. Sauté this also for some time. Add 1 cup of mutton stock which we have separated before into the kadai.Add little salt and cook till the potato pieces get cooked. Add the head pieces now into the kadai along with the remaining stock. Add the kuzhambu milagai thool and coriander powder and the salt needed .Remember you have added little salt before too. Close the kadai and let the gravy boil for 5 minutes. Now add the grinded masala mixed in a cup of water to this gravy and cook till you get the desired consistency. As we have added cashews and roasted gram, the gravy will get thick fast. If it gets thick add the water required and bring it to a boil. Check for the taste and add if anything is missing .Once the gravy cools, the gravy will thicken further. So switch off the stove, when the gravy is little watery itself. After switching off the stove add the lemon juice.


Cham said...

I ve heard it but never tasted because of the word "thalakkari" just scares me :) Probably without knowing I can eat gladly! The gravy looks tasty

Nalini said...

Thanks for sharing a good recipe. Can you tell me how to make kuzhambu powder you mentioned in the recipe or can I get it readymade from the indian store here.

Solai Chidambaram said...

Nalini,i have given the recipe under masala powders section

Akal's Saappadu said...

wow you're reviving my palates and making me mouth water by posting this recipe, this is not fair!!!!

wonderful dish, Mmmmm, we do it in a similar way too but by adding kadala paruppu with this!!!

it's been 2 years since I ate this thala kari kozmabu. my grandma used to do it wonderfully too!!

we simply love it and my amni(grandma) used to save half of the brain to fry and serve my sis & me separately :) thank you so much for sharing this recipe!! we don't get goat head here, that's why I can't do it here; superb post!!!thank you!!

Asha said...

Great post Solai, very traditional looking dish. Yummy.

குடுகுடுப்பை said...

ஆச்சி , தலக்கறி எனக்கு மிகவும் பிடித்த உணவு. ஆனா இங்கே (டாலஸ்) தலை என்கேயும் விக்கிற மாதிரி தெரியல, எதுக்கு இங்கே இருக்கிற நா.கோ செட்டியார் சங்கத்துல கேட்டுக்கறேன்.

நன்றி உங்கள் ரெசிப்பிக்கு

abeynaya said...

Aunty i want to taste them tooo.... it is really bad that u r giving ishu alone all those mouth watering dishes........ :( :( :(

Solai Chidambaram said...

You come home dear.I will give you too abey.

WhyteHousieBala said...

Hello Aunty,

I made this one yester night.. My fnds said it was good.. but, I had lot of doubts while cooking.. the head of goat was smelling badly.. I was in doubt if the smell will go off or not after cooking.. and also, the butcher hasn't cut the head into small pieces.. the pieces were big and we were really afraid to eat the goat head.. we just took the curry.. is it usual that the goat head smells before cooking or do we have to do something to remove the smell...A reply wud be much appreciated.


Solai Chidambaram said...

Bala,I dont think that the head will have any bad smell though it will smell little odd than mutton.the pieces will be big only.I think the butcher would have removed the brain and given to you which has to be cooked seperately.I too dont have much experience of cooking this dish.I tried for the first time and since it turned out good,i blogged the recipe.i made the brain seperately and will soon blog that recipe.

Ruchikacooks said...

Dear Solai aunty, I tried your kosamalli. It was very tasty and spicy. Truly, nakkuku nalla irrunthathu after a cold and fever. Thank you. I have linked your page also.


solai said...

Can you please give the receipe for Therakkal. Thanks

GUNA said...


They tell newly delivered lady eating head curry make the baby neck / head stable or stand in grip..is this true.is this medically proven.please reply

piatro said...

again yummy, yummy and yummy... i go back to the good old day's...

Vetha said...

Hi Madam, ur recipes are awesome. almost tried every recipe. I like to hv the recipe for sambar powder n curry leaves thuvayal.

thks n rgds

Padmanabhan said...

Hi Solai amma, I been trying some of your non-veg recipes as the vegetarian food does not have all the essential nutrient for my pregnant wife. She absolutely loved them and I am totally relieved. Thank you so much from THREE of us.

Prakash said...

I just bought a whole goat for Christmas and I am so glad I found your blog! Thanks for sharing your recipes!! Otherwise wouldnt know what to do with the head, brain, etc. How do you clean the head?