Dad’s famous puli curry recipe

This is my dad’s specialty dish. In our family if any one wants puli curry he is your go to man.

People have tried to make it and they don’t even come close. One family member made it once and the greenbeans were literally floating on oil, another one tried making it and cooked it so that the there was no curry gravy… the names of these family members will remain anonymous for the sake of my own security lol.

He doesn’t even share the recipe, okay well he shares it but you know these old school Indian people, they don’t know about measurements and for someone like me who learning I find it hair pulling nerve wrecking… shh don’t tell him I said that. It’s just that when you ask how much of something and they say a little or a sprinkle or a pinch that is of no use what so ever to me. I could sprinkle the entire packet of salt and I wouldn’t be any wiser.

I made him make puli curry for the entire month of Purtassi so that I could watch him and get this recipe down to a tee and try it myself.

It’s really easy the only problem I had, when I made it, I didn’t want my parents to know. It was supposed to be a surprise but I landed up making the starting part in a flat pot and when the gem squash went in there was no space, so I had to ask my mum where the puli curry pot was and you know what that means I was drilled till I spilled and told them what I was making.

Parents I tell you, the best interrogators on this planet πŸ™‚



  • 3 x gem squash, raw, halved and seeds removed.
  • 10 x green beans, cut into half.
  • 2 x garlic cloves.
  • Curry leaves.
  • 1 x butternut, peeled and cut into cubes.
  • 1 x big brinjal cut into quarters.
  • 6 x potatoes cut into quarters.
  • 1 x 440g tin butter beans, drained.
  • Salt to taste.
  • 2 x tomatoes, blanched and liquidised.
  • 1 x onion, finely chopped.
  • 1 x tbsp Chowmans masala.
  • 1 x tbsp. mixed masala.
  • 1 x tbsp. Bombay delight.
  • ΒΌ x tsp turmeric powder.
  • 1 x tsp jeera powder.
  • 1 x tsp dhani powder.
  • Β½Β x tsp jeera seeds
  • Β½ x tsp mustard seeds.
  • 1 x tsp white dhal.
  • 3 x tbsp. cooking oil.
  • 2 x cups boiling water.
  • 2 x pieces of cinnamon sticks
  • 2 x tbsp seedless tamarid pulp.


  • Heat the oil in a deep pot, over a low heat.
  • Add all the seeds and the crushed garlic cloves.
  • Once the seeds start to pop add the cinnamon stick, curry leaves and the onions.
  • Saute till the onions become transparent.
  • Add the masala, turmeric powder and jeera powder.
  • Mix well.
  • Add the liquidised tomatoes and mix so that the spices infused nicely.
  • Let it simmer on a medium heat for about 5 minutes.
  • Add the greenbeans and dhania powder and let cook for another 5 minutes.
  • Do not be scared the food will not burn as the tomatoe will provide the water for now.
  • Add the 2 cups of water and potatoes, cover with a lid and let cook for about 10 minutes.
  • Add the butternut, brinjal and salt.
  • Cover and cook for 5 minutes.
  • Add the gemsquash and about half a cup of water.
  • Add the tamarind pulp, cover and cook for 10 minutes.
  • Add the drained butter beans and cover.
  • Cook till the butter beans are soft.
  • You can add more water, add a little at a time.

Remember you can use your own familiar masala I just prefer these.

Also Β a trick I came across myself if your food isn’t red enough no harm in added a tablespoon of tomatoe paste.