VepamPooSadam / Dried Neem Flower Rice

VepamPoo Sadam

Neem tree is an akshayapatram (inexhaustible vessel err tree) of medicines. We use both tender and matured neem leaves, neem flowers and neem seeds for oil. According to “About 75% of Ayurveda remedies contain some form of neem! Indians call the sacred neem tree “the village pharmacy”, and have limitless faith in its abilities.”  I totally agree that neem tree is sure the village pharmacy. I grew up eating tender neem leaves and they kill the germs in the stomach. Tender neem branches are used as tooth brushes. They grind neem leaves and apply as face mask and for hair also. Neem oil is the best coolant and relieves stomach ache. For Ugadi we use the fresh neem flowers for the pachadi. I can keep adding stuffs to this list.

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Haldi / Turmeric Milk – Guest post for 3 Curious monkeys

Life is crazy and hectic. This weekend was an exiting weekend for us in Team IMC. We participated in the FETNA event and we won.:-) :-)  You know read about it here.

I will be posting couple of guest blog posts in the coming days. I am not sure if I will be able to post from India.    But lets see. :-) Here is another simple home made remedy that I wrote for 3 curious monkeys.


Turmeric Milk or Haldi Milk (Hindi) or Milahu Paal (Tamil) is a traditional home remedy for sore throat, cold and allergies. It consists of boiled milk along with turmeric and freshly grated pepper corns / pepper powder. You can add palm sugar / sugar candy / panagal kandu for adding sweetness and it becomes perfect for kids too.

Pepper Corns are known for its anti-inflammatory properties and also good source of many anti-oxidant vitamins such as vitamin-C and vitamin-A.  Turmeric is known for its antiseptic properties. According to Wikipedia The active compound cur cumin is believed to have a wide range of biological effects including anti-inflammatoryantioxidantanti-tumorantibacterial, and antiviral activities, which indicate potential in clinical medicine.

No wonder this Turmeric- Pepper milk is so popular!

Here is the recipe.


· Milk – 2 glasses

· Turmeric powder – 2 tsps

·  Freshly grated pepper powder – 2-3 tsps

·  Palm Sugar (optional) – 1 tbsp


· Start boiling the milk along with turmeric powder and when it starts to boil         add the freshly grated pepper powder and stir it for a minute.

· Turn off the heat and let it cool for couple of minutes.

·  If required add the palm sugar and mix well.

That’s it. Turmeric milk is ready. Have the milk when it is hot or at least warm.


Kollu Thuvaiyal / Horsegram dhal Chutney

This week recipe for the CC Challenge is taken from one of the tamil magazine supplementary book. (Snegithi). I have already posted couple of recipes with horse gram – Horse gram rasam and sundal. Here is the chutney recipe with garlic. It seems like horse gram aids in weight loss and also helps to heal kidney ailments.


This spicy chutney along with garlic goes well with rice, idly and also I use it like spread for my sandwich. The coarse texture of this chutney makes it a good spread.



Without any delay here is the simple recipe,


  • Horsegram / Kollu – 1/2 cup
  • Tamarind – 1 small gooseberry size or if using paste 2 tsp
  • Grated coconut – 1/4 cup
  • Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
  • Urad dhal – 2 tsps
  • Garlic cloves – 5 -6
  • Salt – 1 to 1.5 tsp (adjust according to taste)
  • Red chilly – 4-5
  • Oil – 2 tsps
  • Water – 3 tbsps


  • Heat the kadai and dry roast the horse gram / kollu without adding any oil till they turn red and set aside.
  • In the same kadai heat 1 tsp of oil and fry the urad dhal and red chillies till they turn golden brown and set aside.
  • Now in the same kadai fry the garlic and cook till they are tender. Add the tamarind and turn of the heat. (If you are using paste don’t need to add the tamarind) Adding the tamarind to the hot kadai helps to soften it a bit. But this step is optional.


  • Let this mixture cool and grind them all together with salt and coconut by adding very little water. Not more than 3 tbsps.
  • Now heat the remaining 1 tsp of oil and add the mustard seeds. As they start to splutter add it to the chutney.

That’s it yummy chantey is ready. Serve hot with rice and papad or with idly or like a spread.


Submitting this recipe for Cooking from Cookbook Challenge Group.

Deepavali Legiyam | Deepavali Marundu

Deepavali Legiyam or Deepavali Marundu (Medicine in Tamil) is a traditional and a special recipe prepared during Deepavali mainly to aid in digestion of the rich festive sweets and savories. You can consume this any time of the year irrespective of festivals as this legiyam is the remedy for digestion problems.  Starting your day with one teaspoon of this marundhu keeps you healthy. I love this marundu it tickles the tastebuds too. :-) 

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Galangal – Pippal Syrup / Chittarattai – Thippili kashayam for elder kids and adults

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Yesterday we saw the kashayam for infants and younger kids. Now this home made syrup is for elder kids and adults to fight cough and sore throat. Thippili is known for its expectorant properties and chittarattai is known for clearing sore throat.  Thippli/long pepper is comparatively sweeter than regular black pepper. Now adding panagal kandu/rock candy/ palm sugar makes this kashayam more yummy for kids.

(The one I am using is arisithippili, you can also use the kandathippili, the long stemmed ones for this)

For me in US, there is no over the counter medicine for cough. So I need to rely on these home made remedies. I always keep thippili and chittarattai at home.

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Thippili/Pippal/Long Pepper

photo 4

Galangal / Chittarattai



You can also add tulsi leaves to this.

Here are ingredients:

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  • Chittarattai/Galangal – 1 inch piece
  • Thippili/Pippal/Long Pepper – 2 tsps
  • Pepper – 2 tsps
  • Panagal Kandu/Palm Sugar/Rock Candy – 2 tbsps
  • Turmeric – a pinch
  • Water – 3 cups


  • Boil everything in 3 cups of water, till it reduces to 1 cup.

Filter it and drink it warm. (Panangal kandu may have some impurities, so filtering always helps)


You can use the same ingredients twice. You can boil them again in 3 cups of water. You still get the essence.

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Submitting this post for Blogging Marathon #45 – A 3 day marathon for 4 weeks
Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#45

Betel leaf syrup / Vethalai kashayam for kids

In the home remedies theme, today I am going to post the betel leaf syrup for cough and congestion for kids. We regularly use this kashayam and this recipe was given by my ammama(Grandma). Betel leaf contains essential oils that has rich antiseptic properties and when combined with garlic it fights cold and flu more effectively. This kashayam can be given regularly to kids (infants from 6 months to 8-9 years) on the day of oil bath to prevent congestion and cough.

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Asafoetida for indigestion

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Powdered Asafoetida

I am participating again in this month’s blogging marathon. Three days for four weeks. This week’s concept is Home remedies for common ailments.

Disclaimer: These are home based remedies for some immediate relief but please consult doctor for proper diagonsis.

Asafoetida or Hing or Heeng or Perungaayam in Tamil is known for its health benefits. My tadka never gets completed without it. Asafoetida mainly helps with gaseous problem and indigestion.

You can intake asafoetida in two different ways for gaseous and indigestion problem.

First one is very simple.

Hotwater with asafoetida.

  • Warm water – 1 cup
  • Asafoetida/Heeng – 2 tsps

Mix the asafoetida nicely in water and drink it right away. The warm water along with heeng helps to relieve the gaseous problems right away.

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Buttermilk with asafoetida.

This needs some soaking time. You can intake this regularly also.

  • Buttermilk – 1 cup
  • Asafoetida – 2 tsp
  • Grated ginger – 1/2 tsp
  • Salt – a pinch

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Mix everything nicely and let it sit for minimum of half an hour just to let all the essence soak in completely.

These are quick home remedies for indigestion.

Submitting this post for Blogging Marathon #45 – A 3 day marathon for 4 weeks
Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#45



Sukku Vellam | Dried Ginger and Jaggery Powder |Chithirai Thiruvizha Prasadams

As you all know from my previous posts, I am from Periyakulam, which was part of Madurai district till 1996 and then it became a part of Theni district. So being from Madurai side, how can I not talk about Chithirai Thiruvizha?? (This years its on May 13th and 14th)

Madurai Chithirai Thiruvizha (Festival) is one of the major festivals celebrated throughout the district of Madurai and nearby towns.  The two major events are Meenakshi Tirukalyanam and Kallazhagar (Lord Vishnu) crossing River Vaigai. According to the legend, Lord Shiva (Sundareshwarar) comes to Madurai to marry goddess Meenakshi (Goddess Parvathi). Kallazhagar who resides in Alazhar Kovil (20 kms from Madurai), is the brother of goddess Meenakshi and He is also invited for the wedding. But He misses the wedding. While crossing the river Vaigai, He comes to know that the wedding has already ended; He gets angry and goes to Mandapam (small building) where he displays all his 10 incarnations and returns back to Azhagar hills. So He never enters Madurai.

Chithirai Thiruvizha is celebrated in Periyakulam also. The Tirukalyanam will take place in Meenakshi Sundareshwarar temple, Periyakulam and Kallazhagar from Varadharaja Perumal temple will enter Varaga River. (It’s one of the tributary of Vaigai). Kallazhagar will be dressed in Green silk and He will be mounted to golden horse and possession will be moving fast so as to indicate his anger.  For about 17 years, I have enjoyed this festival in PKM (Periyakulam).  In our family, we do the mundan and ear piercing ceremony for kids during this time. Mine too happened in PKM during Chithirai Festival.
For Meenakshi Kalyanam, the prasadam(Food offered to God) will be mixed rice. But for Kallazhagar crossing vaigai, the usual prasadam will be Curd/Yogurt rice and Sukku vellam (Dried ginger with jaggery). I don’t know why they make sukku vellam for prasadam.

I like sukku vellam very much as I use it in tea, coffee and also sukku vellam mixed in water is a great home remedy for stomach problems and aids in digestion. So here is the recipe for Sukku Vellam. Its very easy to make.
The ratio of sukku to jaggery is 1:3.


  • Sukku (dried ginger root) – 2 inch piece (dry grind it to make powder or if you are using store bought powder use 1 tbsp of it)
  • Powdered Jaggerry – 3 tbsps
  • Elaichi – 2


Dry grind all the above ingredients into fine powder. And that’s it. Sukku vellam is ready.

I know curd rice is easy to make, but still I have posted it here with some tips.