21 February, 2007

Tondekai/Tindora-Tender Cashew Nuts Palya

Palyas in Karnataka are dry vegetable subjis which are served as side dish. Usually palyas can be made using any vegetables of your choice. They are very simple to cook with minimum ingredients and spices. There is one palya which has always been my favourite dish. It is usually made and served for special occasions. The main ingredients here are Tender Cashew Nuts and Tondekai (Tindora). The sweetness of tender cashews with crunchy tondekai makes this palya special.
Sometime back when I was chatting with my mother she told me she has prepared this palya. First thing which came to my mind was how she managed to get tender cashews in this time of the year as they are available from April in my native. Then she told me how to make this palya which will equally taste as good as tender cashew-tondekai palya which I am now going to share with you all. It was really great experience for us who always thought there was no way we can get hold of tender cashews in any super market, be canned or otherwise. So without taking much of your time, let’s start cooking :)

Tondekai/Tindora-Cashew Nuts Palya

1 cup Cashew Nuts
1 pack Tondekai/Tindora, cut vertically (all you lucky people can use fresh ones…booo;)
2 tsp Urad Dal
1 tsp Mustard
1-2 Dry Red Chillies
A Pinch of Turmeric
Few curry Leaves
1 tbsp Fresh Grated Coconut
1 tbsp Oil
Salt to taste
Tondekai/Tindora-Cashew Nuts Palya
First soak cashew nuts in hot water for ½ to ¾ hours till they become tender. (If you have tender cashew nuts then omit this step)
Heat oil in a pan and add urad dal, dry red chillies, mustard and curry leaves.
When mustard starts spluttering, add tondekai and mix well.
Add very little water and close the lid and cook till tondekai is just tender. (Don’t cook for long time as they will lose their crunchiness)
Drain excess water from cashew nuts and add them to pan with pinch of turmeric powder and salt to taste.
Mix well and cook for another 2-3 minutes.
Garnish with grated coconut and serve hot with rice or poories.

Tondekai/Tindora-Cashew Nuts Palya

Variations and Tips:
You can add a tsp of Jaggary to it if you like it little sweet.
Although the above recipe is authentic way of making Tondekai-Tender Cashew Nut Palya, you can always try making it spicy by adding little onion and tomato with little Garam Masala and Coriander Powder to add little twist.

Some Facts about Cashew Nuts:
The delightful cashew nut is loved by everybody. Cashews are a product loved by the wealthy nations and provided for by the poor nations. It is closely related to the Mango and Pistachio plants.

Cashews are found growing on cashew trees or "bushes" near the equator. Kerala State (India) Cashew Association is now the largest exporter of cashews in the world.

When is a nut not a nut?
When it's a seed, like a cashew. The tasty cashew grows at the bottom of an edible, pear-like fruit. The precious kernel is encased in a honey-combed protective shell. Because this natural barrier must be removed before their rich flavour can be appreciated, cashews are the only nut marketed exclusively without their shells -- roasted with salt, unsalted for use in cooking, or, as delicious Fisher honey-roasted cashews, perfect for snacking.

(Source: http://www.thenutfactory.com)

Tondekai/Tindora-Cashew Nuts Palya


  1. Thondekayi palya is my favorite! Never tried it with godambi, but will surely try it next time.

  2. HiSups,,,
    This is first time getting to know about this receipe...tried tindora fry,curry ,masala,,,but never with cashew nut...

    But the way,it looks very nice/...

  3. That's what I was thinking? Where O' where did Sia get the tender Geru beeja from?!:D
    In my ajji's estate,there are lots Cashew trees,we used to use a looong pole and pluck the ripe fruit, get the seed from underneath and burn the outer shell on live fire and eat the tender cashews inside.YUM!
    So,we have to boil the Cashews we get here,hah!Good idea.I love Tondekai palya,next time I will throw in some Godambi too.Thanks Sups.

  4. hey Suppi,
    This is my favorite.Remember eating this in most of the functions..hmmm yummy rich cashews..hooo just cant resist.

  5. I hadn't heard of tender cashew in a palya. THere's always something new for me in your blog, Sup! I love it! :)
    I posted the Akki Undi recipe of my MIL's. Thanks, again, for your post that prompted my MIL to make the Undi. It was delicious!! :)

  6. One of my friend makes with peanuts never heard with cashewnut. Looks delicous.

  7. That's what I was thinking Where O' where did Sia get tender Cashews! :D So, you just soak them in water first and cook.Great idea.I love Tondekai palya,next time I will throw in some Gerubeeja.Thanks.

  8. yum...you brought my memories back.
    I love this "tendle ani bibbe upkari" as we call it in Konkani.
    Back in Puttur, its a prestigious thing if someone has in the Wedding Menu :)

  9. Very nice Supriya, As Usha, said this is quite new for us. Viji

  10. Never tried tindora. Now I must try it. thanks

  11. Thanks for explaining what "Palya" is Supriya. I always used to wonder when I read in the blogs :)
    And Tindora with cashew is so very new, shall try it :) Do you add cashew (in this manner) with other veggies too ?

  12. Supriya,

    I think we call it as a Kovaikkaai in TN. Anyways, your dish looks very very rich..!!

    And after reading Manjula's comments, I think it's more prestiguos than I thought it would be...Hmm...one more reason to skip diet for me.... :))

  13. @deepa,
    tondekai nangu ishta deepa:) give it a try sometime and let me know if u like it:)

    this is a special palya which is usually served dring weddings and other special occasions. as i mentioned earlier its usally made using tender cashew nuts but this method of keeping cashews in hot water makes it almost close to tender ones:) do give it a try sometime and let me know:)

    u somehow always manage to make me nostalgic ashakka:) we cousins used to do the same thing during our summer holidays:) most of the late afternoons we would all gather and goto cashew garden where we will climb the tress and collect cahew fruits and eat. ah!!! remember those lovely colours? bright red, yellow... i also remember burning the cahews in open fire and eating its soft kernal:) good old days isn't it?

  14. @soumya,
    yeah... its become very common in many functions:) almost every menu will ahve this as special palya allada? try this aatha... hasi beeja bondina haange taste battu:)

    its quite common in south canara weddings and other functions vani. this has become almost a "must have" item in menus:) do give it a try some time and let me know. i am sure ur FIL and MIL must have had this.
    i am glad u liked akki undi:) isn't it simple yet tasty?:)

    cahew makes it more rich and tasty padma. do try this sometime:)

  15. @asha,
    err... oh!! this is u only:) got confused with 2nd comment ashakka:)
    tondekai palya nangu tumbane ishta:) hope we get hasi godambi someday... have u tried hasi godambi payasa ashakka? its out of this world:)

    yup manjula... it has become very common item in most of the wedding menus now a days:) give it a try sometime as it tastes equally good as the one with tender cashew nuts:)

    thank u dear:)

  16. Hi Supriya,
    Nice combo of cashew and tindora:) We use peanut powder with other masalas:)Good recipe:)

    Yes Sups I agree with you, that I am fortunate to be here in India.
    The peace of mind I enjoy here, and being close to my family outnumbers all the benefits you get abroad:)

  17. @JFF,
    u never tried tindora??? i even used to eat raw tender tindoras. they taste sweet and very crunchy. tindoras are really tasty and very delightful veg. do try it sometime jasu.

    tindora and cashews compliment one another a lot. as far as i know we dont add cashews with other vegetables but will ask my mom about it. we usually make palyas as side dish when ever we have south indian food and in functiona its common to have atleast 3 types of palyas. they dont have any other spices than the seasoning we add. so u will get the taste of vegetables than any other masalas.

    yes... its called as kovakkai in tamil. it is quite expensive item in wedding menus and thats why its very special:)
    u dont have to worry about dieting as there is harldy any oil in palyas and its stir-fry dish. and aslo no masalas:)

  18. @archana,
    we dont use any masalas other than just seasoning in most of the palyas. i usually add peanut powder when i make stuffed brinjals and okra which i have posted earlier in my blog:) if u like it to be spicy u can add onions, tomatoes with little garam masala and coriander powder to give it a twist:)
    u r absolutely right about living close to ur family and loved ones.. feeling nostalgic now:(

  19. Hi Supriya...Wow, I really liked this recipe. I love Cashews....especially in Upmas...those brown toasted cashews are so tasty!
    Tindora and Cashew seems like something I would like...and thanks for clarifying, I always wondered what the term "palya" meant....


  20. The Palya looks yumm...I have made crispy tindora with cashews, but haven't made it this way, will surely try it.

  21. Thats a rich palya..i like that word "palya"..looks delicious..

  22. @trupti,
    looks like many people had doubts about palya:) glad i could clarify it:)

    will check ur recipe n will try it next time. its the beauty of blogging. u get to try different recipes using same ingredients:)

    thanks:) it is very rich and tasty dish:)

  23. Its a wonderful combo to try. thanks for all the info.

  24. Hi Supriya
    this dish a common in our household but adding cashew is different.the taste will be great by adding them.right.the pear like fruit is called "jedi mamidi"in our language.we used to eat it when we are small.

  25. Oh devre Sups this is my all time favvvvvvvvvvvv. How much I miss this palya. Soaking cashew in hot water makes it soft like the tender cashew is it. Will definately try it.

  26. Sounds fantastic, Supriya! Love cashews anytime... thanks for the great recipe! :)

  27. I should thank you twice, first for posting this recipe which sounds so unique, and next for sharing your mother's tip for tackling the tender cashew issue. I have a favorite recipe with tender cashews which i have not tasted in years. It looks like that i might be able to try it out at last.Thank you.

  28. Heu Sups,I saw a recipe using tender cashewnuts in a konkani cookbook that my friend got for me.I was wondering where to get tender cashewnuts as I have never seen them except for when I was very young.Now I know what to do!Thanks for the great idea,dear.to you and your Mom!Moms are great.

  29. Loads of Indian recipes here.Yummy!!

  30. A new recipe to me, the harmless little gourd with tender cashews!

  31. @mythreyee,
    u r welcome girl:)

    we call cashew fruit as geru hannu in kannada. its one of my favourite fruits swapna. and did u know that this fruit can be used to prepare alcohal? :)

    yup girl:) amma na tip:) its very close to tender cashews. try maadi helu hengatu heli:)

  32. @david,
    welcome to spice corner. glad u liked the indian recipe here:)

    this is very authentic recipe from mangalore. hope u give it a try sometime:)

    thank u archana. will pass ur message to amma:) and will keep my eyes open for ur recipe using tender cashews. hope its vegetarian;)

  33. @vini,
    u lucky girl:) do tell me the auther's name of that book vini. will look out for it when i visit india next time:) its been quite some time since i had tender cashew nuts. the taste is so good and different from the dried one!
    and yeah!!1 mom's r gr8. what would we do w/o them:)

    thanks dear:) so do u like indian food? do let me know:)

    harmless tindora indeed:)

  34. Hi Supriya,
    I do not know about this recipe. Your recipe is delicious so I try it later. Nice dish.

  35. Hi supriya

    Wow nice blog, Nin blog thumba chenagide, you seem to be an expert in cooking and very creative in taking pictures.
    Got to try some of your recipes!
    nange godambi with thondekayi?? hmm well nice sakath different ede.

  36. I make tindora curry with peanuts and adding cashews to tindora is new to me. It sure sounds rich..

  37. We do use tender cashewnuts in our cooking but never tried it with dondakaaya as known in Andhra. Nice recipe, Sups.

  38. lovely dish...creative too...i have never tried this before...thanks for sharing...

  39. Supriya,
    Never heard of thondekayi godambi palya even though our neighbors in India were Mangaloreans. Nice twist to the regular version.

  40. Hi Supriya,
    Simply great!!!!!!!!!!

  41. Hai ,
    I like tender cashew.When I was a kid,I ate lot of tender cashewnuts.Your recipe make me a feeling to go back to my place...Curry looks delicious!!

  42. It is a fantastic dish!!!
    Spriya, your blog is gorgeous!

  43. @kajal,
    this recipe is from Mangalore kajal. so i am not surprised to know that u never heard abt it:)

    nice to meet fellow kannadiga roopa:) neevu bandu comment drop madidakke tumba dhanyavadagalu:) innomme nanna spice corner ge khandita banni:)

    as i said before its authentic mangalore dish prema:) i have not tried adding peanuts to tindora. so please do share ur recipe with us:)

  44. @sailu,
    we make payasam with tender cashews sailu. please do share ur recipe with us. i love most of andhra dishes especially spicy ones.

    hey dilip bhai... we all r missing u:) guess u r quite busy. thanks for stopping by:) i am glad u liked the recipe:)

    thanks suma. i am sure they must be aware of it coz its very common in almost every functions in m'lore:)

  45. @MT,
    thanks lady:)

    @Kitchen fairy,
    yes...even we used to love burning cashews in open fire and eat tender cashews:) even i miss them a lot.

    thank you for ur lovely words:)

  46. Hey, your pictures look great!!! I wish gerubeeja was available here [:(]

  47. i remember this dish.. my fav neighbor konkani aunt(thats what i called her when i was small) used to make it with pooris n i loved it! your post bought back memories :)

  48. This dish we get it in mangalore. Rgt now i am missing it. But dont post such a beautiful pics plz. My mouth is watering at 2.30 in the morning. :(


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