facebookPemmadiyanda Jayanthi Mahesh loves adventure and the outdoors. Her interests include rock climbing, trekking, and rifle shooting, all of which have helped earn her a ‘C’ (advanced) Certificate in the National Cadet Corps.

Jayanthi also loves to cook, and particularly enjoys the uniqueness of Coorg dishes. She shares a recipe for Karjikai.

 KARJIKAI (Sweet Puffs)


For the Dough

1 cup  Maida/All purpose flour
¼  cupFine sooji/ Semolina / Chiroti rava
1 tsp       Rice flour (heaped)
1 tbsp    Hot ghee
¼ cup        Milk
Salt a pinch
Oil for frying

 For the filling:

½  cup  Dry Coconut / Copra grated
¾ cupJaggery powdered / Sugar ( or to taste )
¼  cupBlack sesame seeds / kari ellu 
1 tbsp    Poppy seeds / khus khus
One podCardamom / elaichi
( Optional)

Sweet khova and dry fruits, finely chopped and fried in ghee


 Special equipment: Karjikai moulds. These moulds are readily available in the market.


The Dough

karjikaiPut the flour and semolina in a wide bowl. Heat the ghee and pour it over. Add a little milk and water and mix well. Knead it well to form a stiff dough.

Allow the dough to sit for 20 – 30 minutes, covered with a wet cloth.

The Filling:

Put the sugar/jaggery in a bowl. Add grated coconut and crushed cardamom, followed by the fried sesame seeds and poppy seeds.

Optionally, you can add dry fruits like raisins, crushed and fried cashews, and almonds along with sweet khova. Mix them well and make small 2 balls.

Now take pieces of the dough and make  balls of the same size. Roll the balls out flat and spread it on the karjikai mould. Place the filling in the middle and close the mould. Remove the extra dough from the sides.

In the same way prepare, karjikai with the remaining dough and filling and line them up on a tray.

Place a kadhai on the stove and heat enough oil to immerse the karjikai when frying. Add three to four spoons of ghee to the oil for aroma. When the oil is hot, add the karjikai one by one into the oil. Fry till golden brown and crispy.

Karjikai is ready to relish!



MUDRE KANNI (Horse Gram Sauce)

Kandarthanda Divya Madaiah is a professional caterer, who also caters traditional Coorg lunches for the guests at Orange County Resort in Coorg. divya image

Divya says this Mudre Kanni recipe is a tribute to her late mother-in-law, Sulochana Bopanna, from whom she learnt how to prepare the dish.


 Horse gram- 1 kilo

Water – 2.5 litres

Salt to taste

Jaggery powdered – 1 cup

Tamarind pulp – quarter cup (1 lime size)

Black pepper powder – 1 teaspoon

Jeera powder – 1 teaspoon

Chilli powder – 1 teaspoon

Turmeric – quarter teaspoon

Onion – 1 medium sized (to be roasted on fire along with the peel)


Refined oil – quarter cup

Mustard – half tbsp

Garlic – 5-6 Cloves crushed

Dry red chllies – 3-4

Curry leaves- 2 sprigs


Pressure cook the horse gram for 45 minutes. After 2 whistles let it simmer. mudre photo

Drain the cooked horse gram. Put the drained liquid back on the stove and let it boil. Now add the dry ingredients (salt, chilli powder, jeera powder, turmeric and black pepper powder).

In a mixer, put half a cup of cooked horse gram along with the roasted onion and blend it into a fine paste. Add this to the boiling sauce (it adds thickness to the sauce). Add the tamarind pulp and the jaggery.

 Let it boil till it thickens to get a sauce consistency.

 Method :Tempering

Heat oil, add mustard, followed by crushed garlic and fry till it turns golden.

 Add whole red chillies, curry leaves, and pour it into the sauce.

 Best to be eaten with Akki Otti (rice roti)


Horse Gram can be soaked overnight to reduce the time taken for it to cook.

Mudre Kanni tastes best if it is done on a wood fire.



Pandi Curry (Pork Curry)

Mandeda Pratiksha Muthappa, a young graduate of Mount Carmel College has a wide range of interests, including dancing, yoga, aerobics, athletics, horse-riding, painting, and choir singing. With her flowing tresses, she adds modelling to the list, appearing in advertisements for hair tonic. web pratiksha

Pratiksha is also passionate about cooking, and shares her favourite recipe, the Coorg classic, pandi curry. Says Pratiksha: “I learnt the recipe of pandi curry from my mother, Beena, who has always been a pillar of support and inspiration. Not to forget my father, who taught me how to cook various dishes he has learnt over the years.”

 Pandi Curry Recipe

“Pandi Curry” or pork curry is a traditional dish in Coorg cuisine. This dish is specially cooked with freshly ground masala and uses a distinct sour ingredient called “kachumpuli”, an extract of a fruit grown locally. This gives a unique taste and colour to this dish. Pandi curry is popularly accompanied with “akki otti” (rice roti), “kadumputtu” (rice balls) and can also be eaten with other rice preparations.


  • Pork – 1 kg
  • Kachumpulli (or tamarind taste) – according to quantity of pork and taste
  • Coriander – for garnish
  • Curry leaves – for garnish
  • Lime – for garnish
  • Salt – to taste


For wet masala:pandi curry image

  • Sambar onions – 250 grams
  • Garlic – 150 grams
  • Ginger – 50 grams
  • Coriander leaves – 1/2 bunch
  • Green chillies – 4 to 5
  • Cumin seeds – 1 teaspoon
  • Water – 1/2 cup


For dry masala:

  • Coriander seeds – 6 teaspoons
  • Cumin seeds – 5 teaspoons
  • Pepper corns – 2 teaspoons
  • Cloves – 5 to 6
  • Cinammon – 1 piece
  • Elaichi (cardamom) – 3 to 4
  • Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon
  • Methi (fenugreek) seeds – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Curry leaves – 1 sprig



  • Wash the pork and keep aside.
  • Grind all the wet masala ingredients with 1/2 cup of water to form a fine paste and keep aside.
  • Roast the dry masala ingredients till brown and grind it to fine powder.
  • Put in the wet masala in a vessel and cook for a while, till a nice aroma comes.
  • Add pork pieces along with the ground dry masala powder, mix well and allow to cook for 5 minutes. Add salt according to taste.
  • Add 2-3 cups of water and cook till the meat is well done.
  • Finally, 3 teaspoons of kachumpulli (or tamarind paste), cover and cook for 5-10 minutes.
  • Sprinkle with finely chopped coriander and curry leaves. Serve with lime.


Berambutt & Thambutt undé

A passion for cooking is in the DNA of Thapanda Shruthy Ganapathy. She draws inspiration from her mother, Chovanda Rathi, who caters traditional Coorg snacks for functions. She holds a Masters degree in Psychology. shruthy web

Shruthy currently lives in Cameroon, where she takes orders for cakes, cookies and desserts.

Shruthy shares two recipes – Berambutt and Thambutt, traditional Coorg sweet dishes especially prepared during the harvest festival of Puthari.

Thambutt podi (powder) is the basic ingredient.

Thambutt podi


  • 250gms par-boiled rice
  • 1/2 tsp methi seeds
  • pinch of cardomom seeds


In a pan or griddle, roast the par-boiled rice, on a medium flame, until it sputters and the colour changes to dark brown. At the end, add methi and cardamom seeds, and put off the flame, Allow to cool a little, then make a fine dry powder. You can store the powder in a dry airtight container.

Berambutt payasa


  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup grated jaggery
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • grated coconut
  • 1/4 cup thambutt podi


In saucepan make syrup with water and jaggery. Let it boil, keep stirring until you get string consistency.

To this, add sesame and grated coconut, then immediately start adding the thambutt podi, a little at a time.

Keep stirring until it reaches a firm but spreadable consistency. This can now be decorated with grated coconut and allowed to cool .

Berambutt is ready to taste.

Thambutt undé

This is quite similar to Berambutt unde2


  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 cup grated  jaggery
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 2 tsp coarsely powdered fried channa dal
  • grated coconut
  • 1/2 cup thambutt podi


In sauce pan make syrup with water and jaggery.  Let it boil, keep stirring until you get string consistency.

To this add sesame, grated coconut and fried channa dal.  Stir well, then immediately begin adding podi a little at a time, and keep stirring until it becomes a thick dough.

At this stage you can add ghee to taste.

Make small balls of the dough and allow to cool.

Tasty thambutt undé is ready.





Savitha Poovaiah’s Halbai

This month’s recipe is shared by Mandepanda Savitha Poovaiah.  Besides being passionate about wildlife photography, Savitha is also fond of cooking. Her culinary skills are well known in her family circles.

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Savitha says Halbai, has always been one of her favourite sweet dishes .It can be made using different cereal grains, like wheat and ragi. This recipe using rice is very simple to prepare, but requires some patience due to the long stirring involved. Try it out – your patience will be rewarded!


Cook time: 45 minutes (apart from soaking the rice)



  • 1 cup rice, washed and soaked for 4-5 hours
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • Jaggery to taste
  • 4 tbsp ghee
  • 2-3 green cardamom, powdered
  • 20 cashew nuts
  • pinch of salt
  • saffron to garnish (optional)


In a mixer jar, grind the soaked rice along with the cashew nuts to a fine paste. halbai2

Heat a heavy based kadai, add the ground paste with 2 tbsp ghee, coconut milk,   cardamom powder and a pinch of salt. Stir for sometime and add jaggery to taste.

 Keep on stirring the mixture ensuring no lumps are formed.

 Add another 2 tbsp ghee while stirring constantly. Cook the mixture until it thickens and leaves the sides of kadai. This may take around 30 minutes.

 Grease a plate with ghee and spread the mixture evenly with a knife or spatula.

 Let it cool and then cut the halbai into your favorite shape.




Interview: Ranee Vijaya Kuttaiah, author of ‘Cuisine from Coorg’

By P.T. Bopanna ranee kuttaiah

The credit for putting the spotlight on Coorg cuisine goes to the highly talented Ranee Vijaya Kuttaiah, famously known as the ‘queen of cuisines’.

Her book ‘Cuisine from Coorg’, a treasure house of mouth-watering Coorg delicacies, has been going into reprint for the last 15 years.

The multi-talented Ranee is an accomplished Bharatanatayam and Kathakali dancer, and has donned many roles in her eventful life. She had worked as a lecturer at the Maharani College, Bengaluru, and later in the public relations department of the Ford Motor Car Company, New York.

A top-of-the-line culinary expert, she taught the intricacies of Coorg cuisine to the chefs of the Taj Gateway and Taj West End Hotel, Bengaluru. Bursting with energy all the time, she is an avid golfer and writer of short stories. Ranee has also written books on Tamil Nadu and Karnataka cuisines.

Daughter of Kotera Chinnappa, a Kodagu politician, Ranee learnt cooking from her mother, Akkavva. Ranee, married to Nadikerianda Kuttaiah, a well-known name in Tamil Nadu plantation industry, learnt from her late husband, the niceties and refinement of Coorg cuisine.

After marriage, Ranee lived the good life in the Nilgiris, till her husband died tragically when he was young.

Talking to this writer, Ranee regretted that many homes in Coorg had stopped making Coorg dishes in their original form and distorted the cooking style. For instance, she noticed people using butter/cream for Koli Barthad.

Basically, she said Coorg or Kodava cuisine was not very spicy. “We never used onions much and tomatoes were seldom used.”

Ranee says the Kodavas (Coorgs) should stick to the original cuisine. “Even to this day, I prepare fish curry in a mud pot,” she notes. coorg ranee

She is happy to note that original Kodava dishes are still prepared in the Coorg wedding houses.

Ranee wants the mothers to teach their daughters how to cook Kodava food in the original form, instead of experimenting with the Coorg cuisine which leads to distortion.

Ranee is a quintessential Kodavathi who still dressed up in the traditional long-sleeved jacket and Kodava style sari. She is the cynosure of all eyes in high society parties.  



Chikklundé (Sweet puffed rice dumplings)

 Chembanda Reshma Bheemaiah is a real ambassador for Coorg. She runs a home stay, where she invariably serves Kodagu food to her guests.

 reshma passport

For breakfast, it is paputtu, thalayaputtu and otti.  For lunch and dinner, it’s noolputtu, belath neer, kadambutu and non-vegetarian dishes prepared in Kodagu style.  

 Reshma says: “It feels so nice when visitors ask me for the recipes and write them down. They also want to buy the ingredients here in Coorg. I notice that popular items to take back are kachampuli, black masala, and paputtu thari, along with wine and spices.”

 Reshma shares her recipe for a popular sweet- Chikklundé. 

Chikklundé is one of the unique Kodagu sweets which is enjoyed by kids and elders alike. It is normally prepared during festive occasions, and also during the wedding season. Chikklundé has pride of place in the goodie hamper which a bride carries with her when she returns from her mother’s house.

The main ingredient for the filling is puffed rice (nell pori). To make this puffed rice, paddy (unhusked rice) is spread on the floor for a day to gather some moisture, then roasted in a clay pot over a wood fire. The heat drives the moisture in the grain out, causing the rice to puff up, much like popcorn.


Chikklundé  (Sweet puffed rice dumplings)



  • Puffed rice                        750 Gms
  • Brown sesame seeds          25 Gms
  • Roasted gram (channa dal)     50 Gms
  • Grated coconut                 75 Gms       
  • Salt                                   to taste
  • Jaggery                            100 Gms           
  • Oil                                     for frying
  • Turmeric powder            ¼ teaspoon          
  • Maida(refined white flour)     150gms
  • Water                                     for the batter         


 Method of Preparation: chikkalunde pic


  1. The proportion of puffed rice (nell pori) to the other ingredients is normally 3:1


  1. Sun dry the puffed rice and crush or grind coarsely.


  1. Grind the grated coconut, sesame seeds and roasted gram coarsely, adding a pinch of salt.


  1. Melt the jaggery, strain it to remove dirt particles and reduce to make a thick syrup.


  1. Mix the ground puffed rice and the rest of the dry ingredients together.


  1. Add the jaggery syrup which will bind the ingredients, and mix well.


  1. Using your hands, and pressing firmly, shape the mixture into small balls.


  1. Meanwhile prepare a batter with the maida, turmeric powder, and as much water as needed to make bring it to a coating consistency.


  1. Dip the dumplings in the batter and deep fry till they turn golden brown.



Deepthi’s Coorg Lamb Masala and Paaputtu

This month’s featured recipes come from Deepthi Pemmaiah, daughter of Ammatanda Pemmaiah. deepti

 Deepthi and her husband, Koothanda U. Aiyappa are a charming young couple who are proud of their Coorg heritage.

 Deepthi is a passionate cook, and an avid sportswoman who played hockey for Bangalore University. An MBA in Marketing and Human Resources, she has worked as a Senior Director for a UAE based company in Abu Dhabi and Dubai. 

 Deepthi believes in cooking healthy, delicious food, and likes to use a range of herbs and spices from various cuisines for their flavour, as well as their health benefits.

 Deepthi’s Coorg Lamb Masala




  • 1 kg lamb
  • 2 teaspoons oil
  • 5 teaspoons pepper
  • vegetable /meat stock – 2 cubes dissolved in 400 ml water.
  • 4 large onions
  • 4 tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala (preferably Everest brand)
  • pinch of sugar
  • salt
  • fresh coriander leaves
  • oregano fresh/dried


Aromatics:lamb curry

  • 6 cloves
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 teaspoon shahi jeera
  • 2 birds eye chilly (parangi malu)
  • 2 dried long red chillis
  • 1 teaspoon white poppy seeds
  • 2 teaspoons ginger- garlic paste
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • pinch of turmeric


Method of preparation:

Wash fresh lamb meat and cut into medium pieces. In a cooker first fry the meat on both sides with a little oil till the meat firms up and begins to brown.

 Add 4 tsps pepper and vegetable/meat stock along with water till the lamb is immersed in the stock. Pressure cook on high flame for five minutes and then on low flame for ten minutes. Once the meat is tender and well done, keep it aside.

 In a pan, using very little oil, fry finely chopped onions until they turn golden brown. Keep aside. Now fry the aromatics till aroma releases. Blend fried onions and aromatics in a blender till a smooth paste is formed.

 In a deep pan, add one teaspoon of oil along with the ground paste and tomato puree. Add a pinch of sugar and cook, stirring continuously for 15 minutes till oil releases from the edges. Now add the cooked meat along with the stock and let it simmer for few minutes till the gravy thickens.

 Add 1 tsp of black pepper powder, a pinch of salt and one teaspoon garam masala powder. Add finely chopped fresh coriander leaves and dried/ fresh oregano leaves for flavor.

 Serve with rice cakes (Paaputtu)




Paaputtu paaputtu



  • 2 cups thari (broken rice)
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup fresh grated coconut
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • salt to taste
  • 2 teaspoons ghee/ clarified butter


Use plates with reasonable depth for this recipe. First apply ghee on the plate and spread evenly. Now add the thari and water. Let it sit for 15 minutes. Add the milk, sugar, salt and fresh grated coconut.

 Use a pressure cooker without lid and cook on medium flame for 20 minutes or till the paaputtu is firm.

 Serve this delicious paaputtu with Deepthi’s Coorg Lamb masala.




Nellira Liril Machaiah , a certified soft skills trainer, currently heads the Learning and Development Function at Infinite Computer Solutions, Bangalore. She is interested in exploring life’s mysteries, in pursuit of finding life’s purpose!

Liril shares her grandmother Gubbi Subamma’s quick and easy recipe for pancakes. These pancakes are perfect as a snack with a cup of tea, or as a dessert. Enjoy them the old fashioned way, or dress them up with chocolate sauce if you like.

PancakesLiril 1


  • Maida – 1 Cup
  • Coconut – ½
  • Sugar to taste
  • Water

Method of preparation:

  • Put the maida in a bowl and mix it with water until it gets to the consistency of dosa batter. Set aside.
  • Grate the coconut into a bowl, add sugar to taste and mix well.
  • Heat a flat pan or griddle, lightly grease it, then pour enough of the batter to make a thin pancake by swirling the pan.
  • Cook on low heat until it is done. Cook on one side only.
  • Once it is cooked, flip onto a plate and let it cool. Repeat until all the batter is used up.
  • When they pancakes are all done and cooled, place a spoonful of the coconut mixture in the centre of each one and fold up the sides to make a roll. 20150308_214655
  • Keep the lighter side of the pancakes on the outside for a more delicate appearance.
  • And your yummy pancakes are ready to eat!




Thirtha Uthappa, daughter of Kakamada Uthappa, a jeweller, is following in the footsteps of her father. Thirtha says: “Jewellery has always been my passion, and that is what made me leave my corporate life of 11 years and start my own line, Samaara Jewellery (www.samaarajewellery.com). I make personalized and customised precious pieces in gold and diamonds.”

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Married to Ammatanda Mithun Appaiah, Thirtha notes that cooking has always been her other key interest. Here, she shares a recipe for a spicy mutton curry.

Mutton Curry


Mutton – 1/2 kg
Onions – 1 large
Ginger paste – 1 tbsp
Garlic paste – 1 tbsp
Chilli powder – 1 tbsp
Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
Cassia leaf – 1
Salt to taste

For the green masala :

Coriander leaves – 1/4 bunch
Green chillies – 4

For the red masala:
Dried red chillies – 5-6
Coriander seeds – 1 tbsp
Jeera – 1 tbsp
Elaichi – 3 – 4
Cloves – 3
Cinnamon sticks – 2 small

Preparation : mutton curry

  • Wash the mutton well and marinate with chilli powder, turmeric powder and salt for about 20-30 mins.
  • Prepare the green masala by grinding together the coriander leaves and green chillies with a few drops of water.
  • For the red masala, first lightly roast all the spices individually. Cool, then grind together into a slightly coarse powder.
  • Heat the oil in a vessel and sauté the finely sliced onions until brown.
  • Add the cassia leaf and the ginger and garlic paste. Sauté until it they no longer smell raw.
  • Now add 2 tbsp of the red masala, along with all the green masala and mix thoroughly. Cook until you see the oil separating out of the masala.
  • At this point add the mutton pieces and water (depending on how much gravy is needed) and bring to a boil. Taste, and add salt and chilli powder if necessary.
  • After one boil, cover the vessel and let it cook on simmer for about 25-30 mins. Check in between to see if the meat is cooked. Alternatively, you may pressure cook the mutton.
  • Your dish is now ready..