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Puli Milagai / Indian Chilli in Sweet Tamarind Sauce

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If you ask me the most enjoyed moments of my spinster life, I would definitely mention my hostel days. I had a wonderful time and it brings me happy memories whenever I think about it. Those days I and my friend Priya used to bring bottles of preservatives like pickles from home and there was a huge fan following in my hostel for these pickles and the bottles would be empty within few days. One such dish which attained popularity during my hostel days is Puli Milagai. It is my chilhood favorite and I am going to blog about it today.

In this recipe, spicy green chillies are simmered in sweet tamarind juice and thus it adds an awesome taste at the end which is blended with the tangy taste of the tamarind, Sweet taste from the jaggery and spicy taste from green chilli. You can feel the exact taste when you eat it with curd/yogurt rice. Though the spicy content will be reduced slightly after cooking, this dish is advised to be served in a small quantity just like pickles (Spicy Right?). We usually prepare this dish in thick consistency and store it in bottles. You can very well change the consistency according to your preference.


Basic Information:

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 30-40 minutes
Makes: approx. 2 cups


Cayenne chillies / Green chillies – 50, chopped

Onion – 2 heaped cup, finely chopped

Tamarind – 1 orange size

Jaggery – 1/2 heaped cup

Turmeric powder – 1/2 teaspoon

Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon

Salt – to taste

Oil – 3 tbsp

Water – 1 and 1/2 cups or as required

Recipe video:

Method with step by step pictures:

1) Soak tamarind in a cup of warm water for 15 minutes and extract juice from it. Keep it aside.


2) In a Pan, heat oil. When it is hot, add mustard seeds. Allow them to splutter.

3) Add green chillies and saute for 3 minutes or till the chillies are soft. Make sure the kitchen is ventilated well to avoid strong aroma of chillies.


4) Add onions and saute till they are translucent.

5) Add turmeric powder and salt and stir gently. Then add tamarind juice and jaggery. mix well.


6) Cover the pan using lid and simmer the flame. Let it be till the mixture thickens. Stir in between at regular intervals.


7) Once the desired consistency is reached, remove from flame and cool down. store it in a bottle.

8) After 8 hours, again heat a teaspoon of oil in pan and pour the mixture. Give a quick stir for few minutes. (This step is optional if you store the puli milgai in bottles. This step is to make the green chilli more soft).


9) Serve hot for steamed rice, curd rice, idly and dosa.

10) It can be stored in a refrigerator for a week or more if well handled.

Serving Suggestion:

1) Serve it as a condiment for curd rice or for dosa.

2) It also pairs well with roti and stuffed paratha.



1) I have selected chillies which are medium in spice level. Please adjust the tamarind and jaggery quantity according to the spicy level of the chillies.

2) Adjust the water quantity as per the need. if you need watery, please some more water or reduce the water if you need thick consistency.

3) We love to cook till the onion gets caramelized and hence gets this colour. It may vary based on the colour of the tamarind and jaggery.

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Reshmi Mahesh

Tongue tickling tangy recipe…Delicious..

Vimitha Durai

Tangy and mouth watering dish…


My hubby loves spicy pickles…. I can't show this to him, now he will ask me to do this. May be I will surprise him one day..
Event: Serve It – Grilled


ஆஹா,சூப்பரா இருக்கு உமா! 😛 😛


Truly delicious. Would be awesome to have with curd rice.

Saraswathi Ganeshan

Today only I saw this recipe in one the cookery show..your version is too good..

SIGNATURE RECIPES & A GIVEAWAY till july 31st 2011

Santosh Bangar

tounge tickling tangy chutney .new to me but i can not resist muyself try it soon

Kaveri Venkatesh

That's one awesome pickle dear…


my mom makes this yummy one to pair with dosa and curd rice.adding onion sounds interesting


would you be interested in this blog hop. Check out the link and let me know.

Menaga Sathia

ஆஹா தயிர்சாதத்துக்கு ஏத்த சூப்ப‌ர் ஜோடி!!


wow …must be spicy and tangy….yummmm


Truely tastebud tickling recipe!!! Will prepare and keep in the fridge…want to have it with white rice, dal and a stir fry!!!


Hot and fiery 🙂 But still yummy 🙂

Sensible Vegetarian

Spicy and lovely one.

Treat and Trick

Tempting click and looks fabulous!

Prathima Rao

Tongue tickling & finger licking good!!!!
Prathima Rao
Prats Corner

Rinku Naveen

Wow! Looks delicious. We have a slightly different version of it. Its been long since I made this. Tangy and yumm..

Jayanthy Kumaran

ohhh now..this looks absolutely mouthwatery..:P
Tasty Appetite

Hamaree Rasoi

Thanks a lot for visiting my blog and posting your wonderful comments. This dish looks very tasty and tangy.

Hamaree Rasoi


Fiery, tangy n delicious ~ truly tempting pics n a lovely lovely recipe!
US Masala

Malar Gandhi

Must be super hot, at the same time looks tangy and yummm.


I will bring some curd rice and let's have a party! tongue-tickling yummy post!

Sangeetha M

looks so tangy n spicy…drool worthy recipe…bookmarked it !!!


Wonderful!:-) I saw your comment on my blog and immediately came to search for Puli Milagai…I didn't know about this…something new..but it looks so tempting, I have a feeling I'll love it..Shall try soon…