Friday, October 21, 2011

Nei karaboondhi -a savoury treat for deepavali

Most commonly made savoury treat during Deepavali is the deepavali mixture. Many crisp savoury items are made and mixed to create this mixture. That makes it quite voluminous in yield and often made purely because it is easy to distribute to friends and neighbours.
We were three girls having three (or more) choice crisps and our mother used to treat us to them. One of us liked omapodi while the other's choice was theankuzhal ( that reminds me to post both of those...for the love for sisters!) and mine would be the muththusarai. So come deepavali and amma makes all the three. Cooking all of these, she never attempted mixture and most times my father would order this with the local restaurant where the nei karaboondhi was famous. They used ghee to deep fry the boondhis and added just ghee roasted cashews, curryleaves and peanuts.
Even after I left home, initially on work and then marriage, the nei karaboondhi would be ordered to be sent fresh for us. This continued every holiday we went home so much that I brought back few kilos and to send to my husband's colleagues at work. One of his European friends would without fail remind me of the same when I travelled alone too.
This year I wanted to have it included in the dishes I made for deepavali. But having done with the mixture already, I pondered over the idea of using gram flour again. Then I chanced upon a small quantity of powdered flour mix that I had made the Manoharam boondhi with. That was such a welcome change. Since I had just about one cup of the flour mix, I went on to make the same. Lesser the flour the better, less work, less consumption and so on!
The measures given below are far more than to achieve 1 cup measure of flour, however, I shall share the same. You can reduce according to requirement.

2 cups raw rice
1 cup split bengal gram
1 cup split green gram
1 small pich of soda bi carb
5 tablespoons cashew nuts broken
3 tablespoons fresh curry leaves
5 tablespoons roasted peanuts
Ghee for deep frying
Salt to taste
Powdered black pepper to taste

Dry grind the rice and dhals separately each to a very fine powder. Sieve them together a few rounds.
To the flour mix add the soda-bi-carb and sieve again.
Heat little of the ghee in a pan and separately roast the cashews, curry leaves and peanuts. Set them aside.
In a bowl mix the salt and pepper powder and set aside.
Heat about 250 grams of ghee in a pan.
Take one cup of flour and mix water to the same to make a lump free, smooth and slightly thin batter.
Making use of a boondhi ladle, drop the batter into the hot ghee. The batter will fall through the pores of the ladle and quickly form round balls that will come to the surface and float. Remove the same using a perforated ladle draining the ghee.
Transfer the boondhis to an absorbent kitchen towel.
When still warm sprinkle some of the salt and pepper mix to the boondhis.
Proceed to make the same with the rest of the flour mix.
Mixing the batter for one or just two batches ensures that the boondhis will form well and rounded.
Salt is not added to the batter which also helps the boondhis to absorb less oil and turn out crisp.
Once the entire quantity of flours have been used and the boondhis are done, add to the same the ready roasted nuts and curry leaves.
Indulge yourselves to the most flavoursome ghee fried treat.


  1. lovely tea time snack....looks super delicious

  2. Lovely tea time snack. Hope you have a good Deepavali

  3. I love it a lot with pepper flavor the best,perfectly done without vaaal ;)

  4. karaboondhi looks perfect, amma makes ukarai for deepavali rest will be store bought.

  5. I am getting ready for mixture too. I love to have them with curd rice or sambar sadham. Your post have me excited to make some.

  6. Luv the pepper flavour very much...looks perfectly done yummy

  7. The recipe sounds authentic one...luv the pepper and ghee combo in kara boondhi

  8. HI latha,

    can i use store bought rice flour. nan US la erukkaen.

    Thanks for ur response.


  9. @ Vijji, sure you can. in fact you may do the nei karaboondhi using the usual Gram flour+Rice flour proportions. i made use of the manoharam powder that was readily available with me.

  10. Frying the entire kaara boondi in pure ghee would be an indulgence! I'm sure it tastes heavenly tho'!


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