Thursday, January 21, 2021

Kadambam oats

Ah!! My first post for 2021!! I had drafted this post almost five months back but then never got to complete it. So much happened during the last year that the mere task of pressing the "publish" button took a back seat. 2020 was definitely not been very kind to me. 

That being said, I am definitely looking forward to a fresh start in 2021. I have been working on learning some photoshop skills. And I have also started photographing more. So you will be seeing more posts on this space this year.

Now coming to this recipe, The kadambam is basically a mish-mash of rice, lentils and vegetables. The best part about this rice is that, you can use mostly any vegetable you want and you can be rest assured that the dish will turn out fantastic. They say that, in olden times, the Kadambam was made at the end of the week, mostly to use up the left over vegetables. So this rice is an excellent option if you are planning to empty the refrigerator into one pot.

I am not a huge fan of oats except in the granola avatar. I just cannot consume oats in the form of porridge or anything sweet. So when Shyam ordered this large jar of steel cut oats, I was at loss. I was clueless about what to do with it. One fine day, I just decided to make replace rice with steel cut oats in my kadambam. And BOOM!! Am I glad I did that. The dish was absolutely delicious with aromatic, robust flavours.

A friend had once mentioned that the Kadambam rice gets it's flavours from the sesame oil that is used in the seasoning. Since I was out of sesame oil, I have used groundnut/peanut oil in the recipe. So in that sense, this dish is vegan. If you are welcome to replace it with ghee if you prefer.

This is a simple, one pot recipe that is perfect for quick, weeknight dinners. Do give this recipe a try and let me know what you think.

Kadambam Oats recipe:

Preparation time: 20min

Cooking time: 25mins



Tamarind- a small lime sized, soaked in enough water

Steel cut oats: 1cup or 120ml

Moong dal-  1/2cup

Masoor dal- 2tbsp

Turmeric- A pinch

Groundnut oil- 3tbspn

Peanuts- 1 tbsp

Cashewnuts- 1-1/2 tbspn

Mustard seeds- 1/2tspn

Curry leaves- 1 sprig

Asafetida- a large pinch

Shallots- 6-8 (optional but highly recommended)

Mixed vegetables like Carrot, french beans, peas, potato, Kohlrabi-  2 cups chopped into large chunks

Tomato- 1 small, finely chopped

Salt- to taste

Jaggery- 1-1/2 tsp

For the Spice mix:

Oil- a few drops

Cinnamon- 1"piece

Fenugreek seeds- a pinch

Cumin seeds- 1/4tspn

Channa dal- 1/2tbspn

Urad dal- 1/2tbspn

Coriander seeds- 2-1/2 tbsp 

Dried red chilies, byadigi variety- 5-7, broken 

grated dry coconut- 2tbspn

Grated fresh coconut- 2tbspn, to garnish


For the spice mix:

  • Heat oil in a small pan and the cinnamon and fry for a few seconds. Stir in the fenugreek seeds and cumin seeds and fry for a few seconds more.
  • Add the chana dal and urad dal and fry till they turn slightly brown. Add the coriander seeds and red chilies fry till they turn slightly golden in color and take off the heat and allow the mixture to cool completely
  • Add the grated dry coconut to the same pan and dry roast till it turn slightly brown.
  • Dry grind the cooled spice mix to a coarse powder and the roasted dry coconut to the ground powder and to a fine powder and set aside.
For the Kadambam oats:
  • Dry roast the steel cut oats, moong dal and masur dal till fragrant. Wash the oat and lentil mixture thoroughly. 
  • Add enough water, oil and turmeric and pressure cook the mixture for four to five whistles. Take off the heat and allow the cooker to dissipate and cool completely.
  • Heat the peanut oil in a thick bottomed pan. Add the cashew nuts and peanuts and fry till they turn brown. Remove the fried nuts from the oil and set aside.
  • Add the mustard seeds to the same oil and allow them to crackle. Add the curry leaves and the asafetida and fry till they turn crisp. 
  • Add the shallots and fry for a minute till they turn soft. Stir in the vegetable chunks and fry for two to three minutes.
  • Add the chopped tomato, the tamarind extract half a cup of water and cook covered till the vegetables are soft.
  • Stir in the cooked oat-lentil mixture, salt, jaggery and the ground spice mix and mix well. Allow the mixture to simmer for three to four minutes and take off the heat.
  • Add the fried nuts and garnish with grated coconut and serve hot with raita.4

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