Puli milagai recipe with video. Puli Milagai is a type of pickle in which green chillies are cooked & stewed in a tangy tamarind sauce. It is also vegan and gluten free.
This puli milagai is very popular in Kerala and is not only an everyday affair but is also served in Sadhyas. It will be apt to call this as Kerala style Green Chilli Pickle.
Puli Milagai tastes very spicy and tangy with the addition of jaggery at the end though it acts as a balance more than as a sweetener.
Growing up I found it too hot to handle but after I started cooking on my own, began to love it especially with curd rice, pooris and dosas.
More than cooking, I like to understand the science behind every addition of ingredient and they way certain ingredients are cooked. I have always loved that nerdy part.
In this recipe it is the same. For example, the addition of fenugreek seeds. When I made it on my own for the first time, I thought it was to thicken the sauce.
But only after I started learning from Jaya Chechi, from whom I learned this Nadan Mutta Roast that I shared a while ago, I began to understand the minute nuances of every step and how important they are, no matter how small they may seem.
How important is roasting Fenugreek?
It should be dry roasted over low flame. As you keep roasting, it will start to crackle & splutter. Take it off the stove at that point.
The colour should have become dark brown, almost black. Typically when fenugreek at this stage is added to any dish, it will make the dish taste very bitter.
But this bitterness in this recipe balances the heat of the green chillies and brings down the body heat that increases whenever we eat spicy and hot food.
Another reason is, this bitterness prevents the puli milagai from spoiling quickly as well.
Preparing the Green Chillies:
Always choose and pick tender and young green chillies. Make sure to wash and wipe the green chillies well with a kitchen towel.
You can also dry it out under a fan. Just make sure that there is no moisture which will spoil the pickle.
You can either slit it all the way down or cut each chilli into 2 or 3 pieces. We always slit it at home. We cut them into pieces only when we make milagai thokku which I will share later.
Though typically the seeds are removed whenever we make pickle like in this Lemon Pickle to prevent it from spoiling, here we do not remove the seeds of the green chillies.
The bitter fenugreek powder will prevent it from spoiling quickly.
How to store this Kerala Puli Milgai?
After cooking, let it cool down completely. Do not cover with a lid as the water droplets may fall into it.
Transfer to a clean and dry bottle or jar and store it on kitchen counter for 2 days so that the chillies can stew well & soak up the sauce well.
You can then transfer it to the fridge and it stays good for 1 month. We do not like chilled pickle, so I always make only a small batch and store it on the counter and finish up within a week.
Points to note:
- Never add whole green chillies to hot oil or pan as it will start to burst & splutter all around.
- Always either slit or cut them before adding.
- Use sesame oil for authentic taste. If not use groundnut oil.
- Take care while roasting fenugreek seeds. It should change to a dark colour but not get burned.
- Always use crystal or rock salt instead of table salt. This also acts as a preservative.
Puli Milagai video below:
Puli Milagai recipe with video below:
Puli Milagai - Instant Green Chilli Pickle
- Green chillies - 100 gms 20-25 nos approx.,
- Tamarind - 1 lemon size
- Fenugreek seeds - ½ tsp
- Mustard seeds - ½ tsp
- Turmeric powder - ½ tsp
- Asafoetida - ¼ tsp
- Jaggery - 1 betel nut size or 2 tsp (kotta paaku size)
- Sesame oil - 5 tbsp
- Rock Salt - 1 fistful
- Soak tamarind in ½ cup of hot water for 10 to 15 mins. Extract juice and set aside.
- Wash the green chillies. Remove the stalk fully and wipe with a kitchen towel to get rid of any moisture. You can also dry it out under a fan.
- Slit each chilli all the way down keeping it intact. Set aside.
How to make puli milagai:
- Heat a pan and keep the flame low.
- Add fenugreek seeds and roast it well. Keep tossing frequently.
- The colour should become dark in colour. Take off stove and let it cool completely.
- Transfer to a mixie jar and grind to a fine powder. Set aside.
- Heat the same pan over medium flame.
- Add sesame oil and when it gets warm, add mustard seeds.
- Let it crackle. Now add asafoetida and let it roast in oil.
- Add the green chillies and mix well so that they get coated with oil.
- Saute till the skin of the green chillies get blisters and the chillies shrink a little in size.
- Add tamarind extract, salt, turmeric powder and mix well and let it come to a rolling boil.
- Add fenugreek powder and mix well. Cook for 2 mins.
- Add jaggery and mix well.
- Simmer the flame & cook for 10 to 15 mins. The sauce would have thickened.
- Switch off and take the pan off the stove. The sauce will thicken further while it cools down to room temperature. Do not close the pan with lid at any point.
- Transfer to a clean and dry jar or bottle. It stays good for a week at room temperature and for a month when refrigerated.
- Serve this puli milagai with rice, pooris or dosas.