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Black Eyed Peas & Brinjal Kuzhambu | Kongu Nadu Special

A Kongu Nadu special protein-rich, spicy and tangy gravy prepared with black-eyed peas and brinjals and with fresh coconut masala.
Prep Time45 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr 15 mins
Course: Main Course, rice accompaniment
Cuisine: KonguNadu, TamilNadu
Author: Srividhya G


  • Black Eyed Peas - 1 cup
  • Water - 2 cups + 3 cups + for soaking
  • Gingelly oil or Edible Castor Oil - 2 drops
  • Garlic cloves - 2
  • Chopped Onion - 1 cup
  • Tender Brinjals - 4
  • Coriander Powder - 2 tbsps
  • Red Chilly Powder - 1 tbsp heaped
  • Tamarind - small lemon size or 1.5 tbsps of tamarind paste
  • Salt - 2.5 tsps
  • Turmeric Powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Curry leaves - 1 strand

For Tempering

  • Oil - 2 to 3 tbsps
  • Mustard Seeds - 1 tsp
  • Cinnamon - 1 inch piece
  • Fenugreek Seeds - 1 tsp
  • Hing - 1/4 tsp
  • Red Chillies - 2

For Grinding

  • Grated Coconut - 1/2 cup
  • Fennel Seeds - 1 tbsp


Prep Work

  • Soak the black eyed peas for at least 5 hours and pressure cook the black-eyed peas with two garlic cloves and two drops of gingelly oil or castor oil for three whistles.
  • Once it's cooled down, reserve one-half of the cooked black-eyed peas and do not discard the water.
  • Pulse the remaining half coarsely and set aside.
  • Chop the onions, brinjals.
  • Grind the coconut and fennel seeds by adding about 1/4 cup of water.
  • If using tamarind, soak it in water and squeeze about 1 cup of tamarind juice. If using paste, mix the paste in 1 cup of water and set aside.


  • Heat the pan/kadai/vaanali and add oil.
  • Once the oil is hot, add the mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, hing and cinnamon.
  • As they start to splutter, add the broken red chilly pieces and curry leaves.
  • Fry them for a minute and add chopped onions.
  • Cook until the onions turn translucent.
  • Now add the chopped brinjals and let it cook for about 4 to 5 minutes until it is semi-soft.
  • Add the turmeric powder, coriander powder, red chilly powder and salt. Mix well.
  • Now add the tamarind water and let it simmer for about 3 to 4 minutes.
  • As it starts to boil, add the cooked black-eyed peas and the ground peas. Mix them well.
  • Add water according to your consistency preference.
  • Check for salt and spice at this stage and bring this to boil.
  • Once it starts to boil, add the ground coconut mixture and bring it to one boil again and turn off the heat.
  • That’s it. Yummy brinjal black-eyed peas kuzhambu is ready.


  • Adjust the salt and spices according to your preference.
  • Instead of chopping the brinjals into pieces, you can slit them as we do for ennai katharikai.
  • Coriander powder and red chilly powder can be substituted with 2.5 to 3 tbsps of sambar powder.
  • I love black-eyed peas, so went with 1 full cup. You can reduce the black-eyed peas to 1/2 cup also.
  • A drop of castor oil is used while cooking the black-eyed peas. But I went with gingelly oil. If you can find edible castor oil, you can opt that.