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Thursday, March 14, 2013

Karadaiyan nombu is one of the Thamizh festivals I have seen as I grew up. I can never forget the yellow thread with a flower tied to it, that we tie around neck/ hand. Every day I apply turmeric to keep it yellow every dayHappy. Adai is secondary for me those days, but this yellow thread excited me a lot, don't know why. The adai is very flavourful as we roast and add karamani( black eyed peas). My mom adds nava dhanyam in this just for name sake, but its optional. so add it one each, while roasting karamani(Rice by itself make a grain(nell)). I usually sandwich both sweet adai and savoury adai during my childhood, as I am not big fan of jaggery those days. Now I like both. My MIL have no practise to do this nombu, but I wanted to record here, so made it. After long time the flavour of this adai took me back to the childhood days Batting Eyelashes.

What is Karadaiyan Nombu festival? Learn more about the festival here in my Dad's post :) 


        The festival is celebrated when the Tamil month Panguni begins and precisely at the time when month starts. But can also be made at the nalla neram of that day. So make it as per your convenience.

nombu adai sweet

Karadaiyan nonbu adai recipe

Recipe Cuisine: Indian  |  Recipe Category: Snack
Prep Time: 2 hours    |  Cook time: 30 mins    Makes: 14 each


Raw rice - 1 & 1/2 cups

For sweet adai

Rice flour - 1 cup

Jaggery - 1 cup

Water - 2 cups

Coconut pieces - 3-4 tblsp

Karamani/ black eyed peas - 1/4 cup

Cardamom - 1, powdered

For salt adai

Rice -1 cup

coconut - 3-4 tblsp

Karamani - 1/4 cup

Salt - As needed

Oil - 1 tsp

Mustard - 3/4 tsp

Green chilli - 2

Curry leaves - 1 sprig

Asafoetida - 2 generous pinches


  1. Wash and soak rice for 1 or two hours. After soaking, drain water completely and spread it in a clean kitchen towel.1-adai 
  2. Mean while, roast karamani and 7 other grains(optional)– I used  channa, black urad, green moong, finger millet, red milltet, mocha kottai, dried peas . Roast until karamani starts golden and nice aroma wafts. Let the flame in medium flame.2-adai
  3. Soak in water until you do the other works.3-adai
  4. Now the rice flour, let the cloth absorb excess water. Say for 30 minutes. Grind it to a fine powder in a mixer. Sieve it and if you get more remains(coarse rice in the sieve) again powder it sieve to prevent wastage.4-adai
  5. This will yield 2 cups plus little more. So you can use it for this recipe. 1 cup flour for each, sweet and salt version. Boil 2 cups water in a heavy bottomed vessel, add jaggery and dissolve it completely.  5-adai
  6. Filter the jaggery to remove impurities in a metal strainer. Bring to boil again and add the karamani we soaked drained from water. Simmer the flame and add the flour in a sprinkled way. Mix it while you add briskly with other hand to avoid lump formation.   6-adai
  7. Continue stirring in a mashing way, to break the lumps if any. When it becomes a lump as in the picture below, switch off the flame. It takes some time, so keep stirring. When it forms lump, it may look sticky, but after cool down, it will stiffen.7-adai
  8. For salt version, heat a heavy bottomed pan with oil and season with mustard, green chillies, curry leaves, asafoetida. Add 2 cups water,mix salt to it. Bring to boil. You can add a pinch of asafoetida at this stage for extra flavour.9-adai
  9. Simmer the flame and add the rice flour little by little as you mix with the other hand.  10-adai
  10. Cook in medium flame, this will thicken soon than the sweet dough, so be prepared for that. When it forms as a lump, switch off the flame and transfer to another vessel.11-adai
  11. By now the sweet dough would have cooled down. Make equal sized balls, flatten in well greased hands and make a hole in the middle. When u make hole, dip the finger in sesame oil to make it easier. Arrange in plate/ idli plate.8-adai
  12. Repeat the same for salt version and make equal size balls and flatten in well greased hands, make a hole in the middle. Arrange in greased idli plate and steam for 5-8 minutes.12-adai
    • You can use store bough rice flour also for this preparation.
    • Make sure you reduce the flame when you add flour and keep stirring to avoid lumps in the dough. If few lumps are there, it will break as we keep stirring, no need to worry.
    • Roasting karamani adds a great flavour, not only that, it also makes it cook easily. The longer it gets soaked, it will easily get cooked and be soft in the adai.
    • If you want, you can even boil the karamani to cook it before adding.
    • Keep the prepared dough covered, as it will become dry while cooling down.
    • It it is too dry, sprinkle water while you make adai. Otherwise the edges will be cracked.
    • You can add grated coconut in place of chopped coconut, both has its own texture and taste.
    • Longer the time you soak karamani, sooner and soft it will get cooked in the adai.
    • The sweet dough takes longer time to get stiff. So keep stirring.
    • You can add finely chopped ginger in salt adai while tempering…

We offer with butter(urugaadha vennai) and it does tastes best with it :)

Karadaiyan nombu adai

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  1. Being Karadaiyan Nonbu today, i was chkng for this recipe y'day and cudnt sfind in ur site.. Was wondering how u missed posting this recipe..Started looking into other sites, and now its a timely post.. Thank u Raks!

  2. nice to know more abt the festival..nice festive food

  3. Fabulous recipe in fabulous clicks... Asusual Rocking Raji...

  4. superb....just what I was looking for. A non Tamilian married to an Iyer :).
    lovely pictures...superb explanataion. many thanks

  5. lovely clicks,good presentation.

  6. Great pics Raji...Very well explained

  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. woow lovely pics raks:) even i was searching in ur site for the recipe yesterday and was thinking y u didnt post this one:(thankss ...

  8. Nicely explained and good to learn a new festive recipe

  9. Never tried this though thinking for long time now ..looks very yum

  10. Looks lovely, nice tempting clicks

  11. I joined hands with my MIL and made these. Fasted too :) Its my first fast since the wedding. :)

  12. awesome pics raks....so clear...What lens you used...

  13. Nombu wishes Raji, we dont do this fasting but you guys are tempting with ur nonbu adais.

  14. Looks superb, though we don't have this nombu, wud love to try this..

  15. This is totally new to me...never seen such recipe...

  16. Looks nice Raks. I just finished making Karadai.

  17. Looks superb and very inviting too

  18. well made sweet n savory adai...thanks for the detailed pictorials...inviting!

  19. great pictures with beautiful explanation!

  20. looks lovely, i too clicked similarly and was drafting the post & u posted before me. Very quick :) Nice write up :)

    1. Not quick at all, it took more than 2 hrs for me :)

  21. lovely recipe..beautiful clicks

  22. Interesting and yummy .Raks u always rock !!!lovely clicks

    Ongoing event:
    Celebrate - Easter
    in my blog.

  23. Since I subscribed to your blog, I've come across cooking and recipes totally new to me. I've never seen or eaten anything like this - I will try out. Wonders of the internet - linking people who one would otherwise never come into contact with.

  24. wow beautiful raks.love the way u have arranged and clicked it beautifully. I have never heard of what you made but looks awesome.

  25. Authentic recipe. Sure feast for our eyes...

  26. Hi Raks,

    I make the quick version from rice flour as against this original version! This is definitely a lot more flavourful than the rice flour version! Lovely clicks Raks.


  27. Very traditional and healthy recipe!

  28. Love your space and I am happy to pass on the " Very inspiring blogger" award to you .


  29. Loved both the versions of Adai. They look so delicious!

  30. Both sweet & savory version look so yummy. I have never had but seen in many blogs lately. Should try soon.

  31. Healthy and delicious! I love this sweet and salty versions :)

  32. Blogil Pandigai!Delicious and lovely.

  33. Gorgeous clicks. New blog template looks nice.

  34. Wow both versions look very tempting I am sure I will love the jaggery version more :)

  35. Nombu adai looks perfect. Gorgeous pictures

  36. Simply loved the clicks. Gorgeous looking Adai.

  37. I came to your blog late while searching for nombu adai. Having got fed up with the usual upmas & dosas, I made these as you have explained. They came out awesomely. I shared them with my neighbours. Thanx Raks. The clicks tell it all.

  38. Luv your presentation. Very colourful. Feels like grabbing few of the adais right from the screen.

  39. Thanks Raks....this recipe is of great help. Luv ur site.

  40. Raks one change in our recipe is, after you sieve the powder, it is evenly heated in kadaai (my mom used to say kolaamavu padham),rest of the preparation process is same

  41. Can we use store bought rice flour for this?

  42. Can we use store bought rice flour for this?


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