Black eyed peas and Radish Gojju / Kara Kuzhambu

To indulge my tastebuds, I decided to cook Black eyed pea and radish gojju for our lunch meal. Radish and peas soaked in this tamarind based curry has a rich taste and every bite is a bliss. Amma learnt from Ajji(grandmom) and I learnt from both and this dish means lot to me. This particular gojju is part of our festival meals and it is prepared with one or more vegetables or legumes like Okra, Brinjal, Radish, Drumstick, Black eyed pea or Mochai(Hyacinth bean) and served with Keerai poriyal (green leaf stir fry) or similar rice accompaniments.

Trivia: This legume is native to India and later it spread to other parts of the world.

Ingredients from my pantry

Black eyed pea / Vellai karamani / Lobhiya – 1/4 cup

Shallots / Chinna vengayam – 7  or Regular Onions – 1/2 (medium)
Tomato / Thakkali – 1/2 (small)
Radish – 3 (tiny ones)
Tamarind / Puli – 1 big gooseberry size or a small ball size with diameter of 2 cm
Curry leaves / Karuvaipilai – few sprigs
Oil – 1/2 tbsp
Mustard Seeds / Kadugu – 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds / Jeeragam – 1/4 tsp
Asafoetida / hing – sprinkle
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Kuzhambu powder / Kuzhambu thool / Gojju burukko – 3 tbsp (will post the recipe soon)
Coriander powder / Dhania Powder / Malli thool – 1 1/2 tbsp
Water – 1 1/2 cup

Cooking Instructions
Soak & Pressure cook

Wash and soak the black eyed pea in water. Cover and set aside overnight(I soaked it for 20 hrs).

Next day, drain the water and pressure cook the legumes for 4 whistles with 1/2 cup of fresh water. Add a portion of salt before closing the lid. After 4 whistles turn off the gas and wait until the steam releases and then open the lid. Check if the peas has cooked properly by trying to mash it with your fingers. If it easily mashes then it is cooked well.

In another bowl, soak the tamarind in 1 cup of water.

Preparing curry/gojju
In a pressure cooker, add oil. When it is hot add mustard seeds and let it splutter. Then add cumin seeds, hing and curry leaves. Immediately add the shallots (peeled and cut in to halves) and saute for 2 minutes.

Then add the diced tomatoes and saute for 1 minute.

Then add the sliced radish and saute for 3 minutes. Keep tossing the veggies. Add turmeric powder as you toss.

Then add 1/2 cup of water and pressure cook for 1 whistle, this will help the radish to cook quickly.

Meanwhile let us prepare the tamarind extract. Crush the tamarind soaked in water. Try to squeeze as much as possible to extract the juice from tamarind. Discard the tamarind flesh. If required strain the tamarind extract to remove any stones or soil.
Add kolambu powder, dhania powder, a portion of salt and pinch of hing to the tamarind extract and mix it well so that the spice powders dissolve in the extract.

Coming back to the vegetables in pressure cooker, when the steam releases open the lid.

On a medium flame, add the tamarind extract to the pressure cooked veggies. Stir it well. Add 1 cup of water if necessary.

When it starts boiling add the cooked peas to the curry.

On a low flame let it cook for couple of minutes until the curry starts rolling.

I prepared this for the lunch meal and served it with hot rice and cabbage poriyal/stir fry.

You are awesome!!! Thanks a bunch for leaving your valuable comment. It certainly makes me happy and helps me to learn and improve.


  1. Anonymous says:

    Sounds delicious!

    Can you cook vegetables and legumes at the same time in the pressure cooker .. that could save some time ..


  2. RV says:

    @padma: Many thanks for stopping by my blog.

    I wouldn’t cook both legumes and vegetables together for two reason:
    1. Raddish or similar veggies needs to be pressure cooked for 1 whistle (max of 2) only whereas the legume needs to be cooked for longer time (around 4 whistles or more).
    2. The vegetable will become too soft or breakapart if we cook them for long time.

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