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Poondu Kara Chutney / Spicy Garlic Chutney

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Poondu Kara Chutney or Spicy Garlic Chutney Recipe with step by step pictures.

Spicy Kara Chutney is a spicy condiment or chutney which is a perfect side dish for idly, dosa, paniyaram and Adai. Every Household prepares this chutney in a different way and this is how we prepare it at our home with lots of dry red chillies. Shallots can be substituted with onion but there will be different in taste. For a perfect tasting garlic chutney, do not compromise on any of the ingredients.

Add 1 or 2 extra dry red chillies along with the quantity of the dry red chillies you usually use for any chutney recipe as this chutney tastes good with extra spiciness. It tastes very spicy and generously served with gingelly oil.  If you can not tolerate the spicy taste, then substitute the chutney with half normal chillies and half mild kashmiri red chillies, so you can get less spicy chutney but with the bright red colour. Also the chutney colour is purely depends on the quality and quantity and colour of the red chillies used.

If handled well, this chutney stays well for a few days when kept inside the refrigerator. It is very easy to make and very flavorful.


Basic Information:

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Cooking Time: 10 minutes

Serves: 5


For Chutney:

1 tsp gingelly oil

5 shallots, cut into halves

½ cup garlic cloves

8-10 dry red chillies

1 amla size tamarind

¼ cup water

Salt to taste

For Seasoning:

2 tbsp gingelly oil

¼ tsp mustard seeds

¼ tsp urad dal

1 sprig curry leaves

Video Recipe:

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Stepwise Recipe:

1. Soak a small amla size tamarind in 1/4 cup of normal water.

2. Meanwhile, heat a pan with a tsp of gingelly oil. Once the oil is hot and not smoking, add 5 shalllots which are cut into halves. Add 1/2 cup of garlic.


3. Saute it well. Let the onion becomes soft and garlic turns light golden brown.

4. Once the garlic is almost cooked, add the 8 to 10 dry red chillies. Add dry red chillies according to the spice level needed. This chutney has to be little bit spicy usually, so add 1 or 2 extra dry red chillies along with the usual quantity of dry red chilllies you use for any chutney recipe.


5. Once the dry red chillies are crisp and shining, turn off the stove and cool down the ingredients.

6. Add the cooled ingredients, soaked tamarind along with water and salt to taste.

7. Grind it to a smooth paste. In between taste and adjust the salt if needed.


8. Transfer the ground content to a bowl.

9. In a small pan, heat 2 tbsp gingelly oil. Once hot, add 1/4 tsp mustard seeds, 1/4 tsp urad dal. Allow it to splutter.

10.  Add a sprig of curry leaves. Once the leaves are crisp and the ingredients becomes crisp and brown, add it to the chutney.


11. Mix well and serve for idly or dosa.

Serving Suggestions:

1. This chutney pairs well with any South Indian Idly, dosa, Paniyaram and adai for breakfast or dinner.

2. Serve only a small quantity as it is usually very spicy for idly and dosa.



1) Add extra gingelly oil if needed.

2) You can use 5 kashmiri red chillies and 5 normal red chillies for this chutney to get less spicy taste and bright red colour.

3) The colour of the chutney is completely depends on the quantity and quality and colour of the dry red chillies.

4) Adjust the tamaraind according to it’s sourness and adjust the dry red chillies according to the spicy taste.

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