Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Karuvadu Kuzhambu | Thedu Karuvadu Kulambu | Dry Fish Curry

Thedu Karuvadu kuzhambu, a delicious, tangy and spicy curry made from the dry fish,brinjal and drumstick. It's been a long time since i had this curry.Since i'm no expert in buying dry fish, i always avoid buying and making them on my own other than nethili karuvadu which i can easily identity.So whenever i'm at my mom's place, i ask her to make this atleast once during my stay. Yep, today she made it, all i did was took the snap and enjoy the meal hearty.
I have heard from many people that they don't like the dry fish even the die hard non vegetarians too. Though i don't claim me as big non vegetarian fan, still i like certain varieties of dry fish very much like the nethili karuvadu and this thedu karuvadu or as thundam we call it locally. And the recipe that i'm sharing today is my grandma's(paternal), from her, my mom learnt it and it's been made in the same way for decades without any change in the recipe. 

My grandma was a big karuvadu/dry fish lover and i guess that i inherited her taste for dry fish. She used to make at least twice a week, in those days, other family members got really bored of repeatedly making karuvadu curry and sarcastically passed jokes about her love for karuvadu. But today when mom makes this curry, at least for an hour we talked about grandma and in that conversation she said something like "ippo yaravathu appadi seithu kudupagalanu iruku" . 

Really miss her physically more today, but in our memories, thoughts and in the cooking she taught us, she will always be there.  Ok, now coming to this recipe, this karuvadu curry is one of my grandma's signature dish, so if you like dry fish, give it a try once and i'm sure that you will keep this recipe as keeper for future.

Thedu Karuvadu Kulambu | Dry Fish Curry

Preparation Time : 10 mins | Cooking Time : 20 minsServes :
Recipe Category: Curry | Recipe Cuisine: Indian
Thundu Karuvadu/Dry Fish - 50 gms
Brinjal - 2
Drumstick - 1
Shallots - 5
Garlic - 8
Tomato - 1 
Tamarind - a small lemon size
Sesame Oil - 2 tsp
Mustard - 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves - 1 spring
To dry roast and grind
Red Chili - 6
Coriander seed - 2 tbsp
Cumin seed - 1/2 tsp
Black peppercorns - 1 tsp
Curry leaves - 1 spring
Grated Coconut - 1/2 cup
Shallot - 10
Garlic - 5 
Sesame Oil - 1 tsp

First cut the drumstick into 1.5 inch pieces, brinjal into thin circles,tomato into cubes. Peel the onions and garlic. Keep it ready. Take the dry fish, wash it in water thrice and keep aside.For dry roasting, heat the kadai with oil, add cumin ,let it splutter, then add the black peppercorns roast it for few secs. Next add the curry leaves. Let it splutter, then add the red chili and coriander seeds, roast them all until it becomes aromatic and slightly changes its color. Switch off the flame and let it cool. Soak the tamarind in water for 15 mins. And also keep the coconut and shallot & garlic for grinding as ready.First put the roasted ingredients into the mixie jar and grind into coarse mixture, then add the coconut, shallot & garlic along with required water and grind them into fine paste.Extract the tamarind juice from the soaked tamarind, add the grounded paste into it and make a thick gravy.Now for the curry, heat the kadai with oil, add the mustard, let it splutter, then add curry leaves.Next add the roughly chopped shallots and garlic, let it saute in the oil for few secs.Then add the dry fish, saute it for 2 mins and add tomatoes.Saute it for 2 mins.Next add that tamarind & the masala mixture into the kadai followed by the binjal and drumstick.Bring into boil and let it cook till the veggies are tender and the oil separates on the top. Switch off the flame. If you like boiled egg with your curry, boil them and add it in the curry.Tada, Finger licking delicious Karuvadu Kuzhambu is ready to serve.
  • Here in this recipe, i have used thedu/thundu karuvadu.
  • You may noticed in the recipe, that i haven't used the salt in the curry, because for us, the salt in the dry fish is enough. so i haven't add any extra salt in the curry
  • While making dry fish curry, always give a taste test in the end and if needed only add salt.
  • Adding sesame oil gives great flavor to the curry.
  • Brinjal and drumsticks are the most opt veggies for dry fish curry and it enhances the taste too.
  • The given quantity of spices make the curry as little more than mild spice level. So adjust the quantity as per your liking.
  • We like to have boiled egg with all types of karuvadu curry.


  1. Superb recepie,, tried and turned out well

    1. Thank you so much for your feedback. Glad that you liked it !

  2. Very nice recipe. Can you share something about thedu karuvaadu. And it's benefits,. Whatever you know

    1. Thank you ! Sure will share the benefits and update the post soon.