garlic rice in a cast iron pan
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5 from 2 votes

Garlic Rice | Poondu Sadam

Irresistible garlic rice or poondu sadam cooked with sun-dried turkey berries, black nightshade berries, dried curd/yogurt chilies, and dried neem flowers - A traditional postpartum style garlic rice, easily digestible and healthy too.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Entree
Cuisine: TamilNadu
Keyword: garlic rice, poondu sadam
Servings: 4
Calories: 260kcal
Author: Srividhya G



  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 sun-dried chilies
  • 10 sun-dried turkey berries
  • 1 tsp sun-dried black nightshade berries
  • 1/2 tsp dried neem flowers
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp asafoetida
  • 15 garlic cloves
  • 5 to 6 curry leaves
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 3 cups cooked rice
  • 1/2 tsp salt


  • Heat the pan over medium heat and add 2 tbsp of gingelly oil.
  • When the oil is hot, add the dried curd chilies and shallow fry for 2 minutes or until it turns brown. Remove it from the pan and set it aside.
  • In the same pan, add ten dried turkey berries and shallow fry it 90 to 120 seconds or until it changes the color to slightly dark brown. Remove it from the pan and set it aside.
  • In the same pan, add 1 tsp of black nightshade berries, and 1/2 tsp dried neem flowers and shallow fry for 20 to 30 seconds. Remove it from the pan and set it aside.
  • Now in the same pan, add 1 tsp mustard seeds, asafoetida, and 15 garlic cloves. Mix and add few Curry leaves and 1/4 tsp turmeric powder. Shallow fry until the garlic turns brown. It usually takes about four to five minutes over medium heat.
  • The garlic is ready. Reduce the heat and add 3 cups of cooked rice. Then add 1/2 tsp of salt.
  • Now crush the dried berries, neem leaves, and the chilies and add it to the rice. Mix them all, and that's it, the garlic rice is ready.



  • I am using sesame oil for this recipe. But you can use oil of your choice.
  • I shallow-fried the ingredients separately until it changes the color. The frying-time is different for each ingredient, and it doesn't take more than 2 minutes to fry each. So do not let it unattended for a long time. Burned berries don't taste good.
  • If time is pressing, then you can fry all the ingredients together too but do it over medium-low heat and remove the black nightshade berries and neem flowers first.
  • Also, do not too much salt. The dried berries have salt in them. So after mixing the rice, taste it and add accordingly.
  • I personally like whole garlic cloves, but you can chop them roughly or finely as well.
  • Adjust the berries and neem flowers according to your preference.
  • I used cooked hand-pound rice for this recipe. But you can use any variety.


Calories: 260kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 294mg | Potassium: 87mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 45IU | Vitamin C: 28.5mg | Calcium: 37mg | Iron: 0.5mg