Kadappa Recipe / Kumbakonam Kadappa

Kadappa Recipe


My native being Kumbakonam, I do not know why it took me this long to post this wonderful dish that is so apt as a side dish for idli and dosa. Kadappa is a cross between sambar and kurma and is dal based where in the tangy factor is incorporated by adding lemon juice instead of tamarind as we do for sambar. My grandma makes this so well and it is a pleasure to dig into the hot steaming idlis dunked in kadappa served on freshly plucked banana leaves from the backyard. I love to have this with Puris as well. Unfortunately I don’t get to make this as often as I wish to because Hubby is not so keen on this and prefers sambar. Recently I made this for the guests at home and simply loved the aroma while it was cooking.


Kumbakonam Kadappa


Kadappa Recipe

You’ll need:

  • Yellow Moong Dal / Paasi Paruppu – 1/2 cup
  • Potatoes – 2
  • Cinnamon – 1 inch stick
  • Cloves – 2
  • Onion – 2
  • Garlic – 4 pods
  • Turmeric Powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Lemon – 1
  • Curry leaf – 1 sprig
  • Coriander leaves – to garnish
  • salt – to taste
  • Oil – 2 tbsp

To be ground to a paste:

  • Roasted Gram Dal / Pottu Kadalai – 1 handful
  • Poppy seeds – 2 tsp
  • Green Chillies – 12 to 15
  • Fresh grated coconut – 1/4 cup
  • Garlic – 4 pods




Pressure cook washed yellow moong dal in required amount of water with 1/4 tsp of turmeric powder till soft and keep aside. Boil the potatoes. Cool and peel off the skin. Lightly crumble with your fingers and keep aside.


Grind the ingredients mentioned under the category to a fine paste using little water and keep aside.


Heat a pan with oil. Add cinnamon, cloves, finely chopped onion, 4 pods crushed garlic, curry leaves and sauté till the onions turn translucent.


Now add the cooked moong dal, 1 to 1-1/2 cups of water, salt and the remaining turmeric powder and bring it to a boil. Add crumpled potatoes, ground paste and once again bring it to a boil. once the raw smell of the paste goes off switch off and take off the stove.


Remove from stove and add juice of 1 lemon and mix well. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with idlis, dosas or puris.




  • Do not add the lemon juice at one go. Add little by little adjusting to your taste.
  • Adjust the quantity of water also depending upon the thickness you want.
  • Adjust the amount of chillies according to your spice level.
  • Do not add lemon juice while the gravy is still boiling. If you do the whole thing will curdle.
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  1. says

    I came to know abt this recipe very recently n tried at home…so flavorful n delicious combo with idlis…your pics makes me hungry now :)
    Love the color of your kadappa…finger licking good!!

  2. Anonymous says

    I tried this recipe & it would be the best combination only for poori & not for idli or dosa. Recipe is not that extraordinary but good.

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