In Tamil Nadu, traditional Thalippu Vadagam is used as an instant seasoning in some dishes like kara kuzhambu/sambar/kootu. Thisvadagam can also be used to prepare a nice chutney/thuvayal. It goes well as a side dish to idli/dosa and also with hot steamed rice. Thalippu Vadagam also known as Vengaya Vadagam is an authentic and aromatic spice of Chettinad, made by combining several ingredients like shallots, garlic and whole spices and drying it in direct sunlight. This an aromatic tempering used in many of South Indian and Chettinad dishes like Sambar, Kuzhambu and Kootu. This is granny’s recipe, Passed on to us now. You can prepare this in large batches, store them in airtight container for an year and use as required while tempering dishes.
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2. For using as tempering, to the medium hot oil add 1tsp of crushed vadagam and allow it to turn golden brown, then add the rest of the ingredients.( Do not burn the vadagam as they may turn bitter).
3.This gives you fantastic flavour in sambar,no need to add any other seasoning item or chopped onion for tempering .