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Vendaikai Morkhozhambu (okra or ladies finger in yoghurty spicy stew) (bindi in dahi stew)

April 10, 2014
Vendaikai Morkozhambu  is a yoghurt or dahi-based stew, a traditional tamil recipe.  It means okra or ladies finger in yoghurty stew.  In hindi, it is bindi cooked in dahi the south Indian style.  It is our favourite summer menu.  

Ingredients :

Plain unsalted Yoghurt or Dahi (curd) or ‘getti thayir’ in tamil – 1.5 cups

Shelled and grated coconut – 1/4 of a cup

Green chili – 3-4

Ginger – a slice

Curry leaves and fresh cut coriander leaves for garnishing

Mustard and Jeera/Cumin seeds half a tsp each for seasoning (and de-seeded and torn dry red chili (optional))

Oil – 1 tbsp

Okra or ladies finger or bindi or vendaikai – 300 gms

Onion- small size – 1

rice, tuar dal (lentil) and jeera – 1 tsp each soaked in water for half an hour

Salt to taste






1.  Soak a tsp each of rice, lentil (tuar dal) and jeera/cumin seeds in water for 30 minutes.  Rinse and keep aside.

2.  Grate the coconut, slice the green chili and ginger and chop half an onion.

3. Combine all the above ingredients in 1 & 2 to smooth paste adding water.  This is the basic ‘morkozhambu’ paste.

4.  Take unsalted yoghurt or dahi in a wide and deep saucepan.  Beat it to smooth consistence whisking lightly but NOT mechanically in a blender.  Neither should the yoghurt/dahi/thayir get watery.

5.  Add the ground morkhozhambu basic paste to this beaten dahi and mix well.  Add salt and a pinch of turmeric powder and stir to smoothness.  Now the raw morkozhambu is ready.

6. Grate the other half of the onion and cut okra (ladies fingers/bindi/vendaikari) into 1 inch pieces.

7. Heat oil in a wok and saute with mustard and cumin seeds (and the optional dry de=seeded and torn red chili) first when the oil is hot enough.  When these crackle, add the chopped onion to oil with curry leaves and saute.  When the onion is golden brown add the cut okra/bindi/vendaikai and stir fry.  Do not add water.  Keep the lid closed and cook on low flame until soft or to what level you want.  Keep stirring every 1-2 minutes.  DO NOT ADD WATER.

8. When the okra is cooked, switch off and transfer contents to the raw morkozhambu in the sauce pan.

9. Mix evenly everything and bring the vendaikai morkozhambu to boil on low flame. This cannot take more than 2-3 minutes.  Remember to switch off flame immediately when the stew begins to boil as otherwise it will get watery or curdle.  To maintain the right balance/smoothness of morkozhambu, do not overheat or overboil the kozhambu. (mor means buttermilk in tamil – kozhambu means stew)

10.  Garnish with freshly rinsed and cut coriander leaves.

11.  Now Vendaikai Morkozhambu (okra or ladies finger yoghurty stew) (bindi in yoghurty stew) is ready for serving.

12.  Serve it hot with rice or parathas/rotis.  A yummy summer subzi/sidedish to go with all traditional unleavened rotis/breads in equal measure as with rice, the way we take it down south.

13.  Dahi/yoghurt is consumed with fervour in any version all across India.  This is traditional tamil version.

14. Morkozhambu is also a part of south Indian wedding menu.

15.  Nutritious and cooling with bindi/okra and dahi/yoghurt, no wonder this is a must every week in summers.  The bindi takes care of the fibre content requirement.  Coconut is healthy fat.  Ginger offsets any gas effect.


From → Vegetarian

  1. One of my favourites!

  2. mine too 🙂

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