Pandi Curry or Coorg Pork Curry
Coorg is more than just coffee and its beautiful landscapes. It is about classic heirloom recipes that make way onto a plate that reflect the luscious seasonal bounty of the Coorg landscape.
Pandi curry or Coorg Pork curry is one of the classic and unique dishes of Coorg, worthy enough to feature in Michelin Star restaurant. One bite into this magical blend of spices and vinegar, and it will leave an unforgettable impression on your palate forever. You will definitely be craving for more! There is no better version I have ever tasted in my life. The predominant flavour in this curry is its sourness but it is also juicy, succulent and the best ever. Every celebration in Coorg like Puthari, Kailpodh and even weddings must feature this dish, else declared incomplete. It reflects the exotic and rich lifestyle the Coorgis’ live.
This recipe comes from my mom who is the best cook ever and her pork curry is extremely loved and popular. A recently turned vegetarian, it still surprises me that she can get this dish so perfect even without tasting it. Salute Maa! Two very important components required for this curry is the pork masala which is best homemade and the Kachampuli (black vinegar). Kachampuli is an extract of Garnicia Gummi Gutta, a tropical fruit which is also used as a preservative. I have listed down the ingredients for the masala/powder and the closest substitute to the vinegar could be a combination of regular vinegar and tamarind paste. I have never tried that alternative though. Thanks to mom, I have both stored in my pantry here. 🙂
Let’s get to the authentic Pork Curry without further delay.
3 tbsp coriander seeds
2 tbsp cumin seeds
2 tbsp mustard seeds
1 tbsp peppercorns
1 tsp fenugreek seeds
- Dry roast all spices until they crackle and change their colour. Make sure to keep stirring it constantly to avoid it from burning.
- Set aside and let it cool
- Once cooled, dry grind in a spice blender to make a fine powder.
- Store in an airtight container.
1kg Pork, with fat on
2 tsp turmeric powder.
1 tbsp red chili powder.
2 large onions
4 inch piece of ginger
4 cloves of garlic
3-4 green chillies
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 sprig of curry leaves
1 tbsp Kachampuli, or Coorg black vinegar
1 tbsp oil for frying
2 tbsp Pork Masala Powder
Salt to taste.
- Cut pork into medium sized pieces. Wash thoroughly and marinate with turmeric powder, red chilli powder and salt for about 30 minutes. Overnight is better.
- Coarsely grind onions, ginger, garlic and green chillies together.
- In a large thick bottom pan, add a little oil and heat it.
- Add cumin seeds and curry leaves and let it splutter.
- Add the marinated pork and the ground onion paste.
- Combine everything well and cook on medium heat until soft and the pork is tender, approx. 20 minutes. You may pressure cook to shorten cooking time and depending on the meat quality.
- Then add the prepared Pork Masala Powder and cook for 5 to 10 minutes covered. Add water to make a gravy.
- Check for doneness of the pork and then add kachampuli and cook again for a few more minutes.
- Garnish with coriander leaves.
- Serve hot sprinkling little lemon juice. Tastes best with Rice roti (Akki roti) or Kadambuttu. I have posted the recipe for kadambuttu earlier.
Note: Depending on the quality of meat the cooking time might vary. The quality of pork is excellent here, so I almost never pressure cook it. I hope you enjoy this style of pork and do let me know what you think of it. 🙂
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