Kayachar (kaichar) or Dalcha – Rawther recipe
Thanks to my sister in law (lubi) for sharing this wonderful recipe with me.
Kayachar is also known as Dalcha in Tamil Nadu and can be made into a thick or thin gravy, depending on how you want to enjoy it with the rawther biriyani. Popularly served in functions including marriages, it can be enjoyed with dosa and idlis too.
This recipe may mimic the humble sambhar, but it is a non-veg preparation and does not include the spice asafoetida.
Souring agents in this gravy are tomatoes and green mango. If green mango is not available, tamarind paste can be used instead.
Tuvar dal – 100 gms, soaked in water for one hour
Chana dal – 100 gms, soaked in water for one hour
Potato – 2 nos, cut into medium chunks
Brinjal – 2 nos medium, cut into medium chunks
Ash Gourd (Winter melon) – one half, cut into medium chunks
Drumsticks – 2 whole, cut into equal lengths
Ghee – 1tbls
Cooking Oil – 1 tblsp
Ginger Garlic Paste – 1tsp
Garlic – 4-5 nos
mustard seeds – 1tsp
fenugreek seeds – 1/2 tsp
Fennel seeds(Green large jeera)-1tsp
Cumin (Small Jeera) – 1tsp
Curry Leaves – 10 nos
Green chilly – 2 nos,slitted
Tomato – 2 small, sliced
Green Mango – 1/2 (or whole if small, may include seed for extra sourness)
Small Onion – 5-6 (optional), sliced or paste
Coriander Leaves – 1 bunch
mutton (‘kozhup’ pcs) – 3 or 4 medium pcs, preferred bones with a little fat and meat on it. You may increase the portions if needed
Turmeric Powder – 1tsp
Red chilli powder – 1.5 tblsp
Coriander Powder – 1tblsp
Water – 4 cups
In a small pressure cooker, add the drained dals, garlic and 2-3 stems of coriander leaves and a tsp of turmeric powder with two cups of water. Close and cook until one-two whistles are complete. Leave the pressure cooker to cool completely and open the lid after releasing any leftover steam. At this stage, you may decide to cook the potatoes, drumsticks and ashgourd separately in another pot of water (to evenly cook the veges and avoid overcooking it in the pressure cooker) or add the vegetables to cook with the dal in the pressure cooker for an additional one more whistle.
In another large bottomed pan, heat the oil and ghee and splutter mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, large and small jeeras, curry leaves and ginger garlic paste and small onions(optional). Add the mutton pcs, sliced tomatoes, turmeric powder, red chilli powder and coriander powder.Add in the green chillies, brinjal chunks and season with salt. Add 2 cups of water and let the brinjals and mutton cook for sometime.Half way through, add sliced raw mango and rest of the cooked vegetables with dal. Finally add some chopped coriander and serve it hot with biriyani, dosa and idli.