Manathakkali vathal podi is a condiment (Podi recipes) for rice to be mixed with ghee and mixed to have as a part of lunch. It is known as black nightshade berries commonly.
Manathakkali AKA black nightshade berries are usually made as vathal in Tamil Nadu and can be used to prepare vathal kuzhambu.
Let’s see a super easy and simple recipe to prepare this podi that my mom quickly makes. Good for an upset tummy, common cold as it has black pepper and cumin seeds as well as mouth ulcer.
Just three main ingredients in this recipe. Since we are consuming this for benefits than taste, I prefer using black pepper and not red chillies.
- Manathakkali vathal (dried black nightshade berries)
English – Black nightshade
Tamil, Malayalam – Manathakkali
Telugu – Kasaka
Kannada – Kage soppu/ Kaki soppu
Hindi – Mokoi
How to make manathakkali vathal?
Usually, the un ripe berries are collected and soaked in buttermilk for a week. Each day we have to stir twice and keep in sun. Then after that, dry over a plate/ muram (bamboo plate) in sun. Keep drying until they are free from moisture.
The sun should be super hot to make vathal like any other vathal. This ensures it preserved for long time.
- Black pepper
- Cumin seeds
See recipe card for quantities.
Though I have made it like a instant podi version in small quantities, I have used just used few ingredients. Have not added dals I usually add in other podi varieties as I usually do.
Same way as this, you can prepare with sundakkai vathal (turkey berry). I know in some households it is made as a combination of all dried items like vathals and neem flower. It is called angaya podi and given as post partum food given to lactating mothers.
But this is a super quick version amma makes just for the day or two mostly. Just like milagu jeeraga podi she makes. Quickly crushes in ammi and serves with pipping hot rice, ghee.
Are videos more your thing? Watch quick video here.
So this is just an idea to include the manathakkali vathal in your diet once in a while. You can adapt your own podi and just add roasted vathal to it as well.
- Spicy – This is perfectly balanced recipe. If you want it to be more spicy, try roasting 2 red chillies along.
- Fry in ghee or oil – You can speed up the roasting part by using ghee or oil. When you make just for a serving you can try this.
See this kothamalli podi recipe on my website! (adapt it for a flavorful version of same, sneaking vathal in it)
Stays good for 10 days in room temperature. Since dry roasted, this keeps good. But I would not suggest making in bulk and storing for long. You can also keep in fridge to double the shelf life.
Take care not to burn any ingredient and season it well with salt. This will ensure no bitter taste in the podi.
Other ways to use manathakkali vathal is in Vathal kuzhambu, tempering for sambar rice or rasam rice and just fry in oil or ghee to use as side dish for curd rice. You can also mix as such in rice, ghee, salt and enjoy.
Manathakkali vathal podi for rice
- ¼ cup Manathakkali vathal dried black nightshade berries
- 2 tbsp Black pepper
- 2 tbsp Cumin seeds
- Heat a pan and first roast black pepper. Keep stirring until it starts popping.
- Lower the flame until all of them are roasted well. You will know once the popping interval reduces.
- Transfer to a plate for cooling down.
- In goes cumin seeds. It will start popping soon. So take care not to burn it.
- Keep roasting until it is golden and fragrant. Remove in plate for cooling.
- Now add the vathal. Roast in low flame.
- As you roast, the vathal puffs up well. Test for doneness by crushing it to see if it gets powdered easily.
- Remove the roasted vathal in plate.
- Place the roasted items in blender/ mixie once cooled. Add required salt.
- Powder finely and transfer to airtight container.
- To check if the vathal is roasted well, take one and crush with your fingers to see if it gets powdered. If it does, then it’s roasted well. If it gets smashed instead, continue roasting patiently.
- Heat a pan and first roast black pepper. Keep stirring until it starts popping. Lower the flame until all of them are roasted well. You will know once the popping interval reduces.
2. In goes cumin seeds. It will start popping soon. So take care not to burn it.
3. Keep roasting until it is golden and fragrant.
4. Remove in plate for cooling.
5. Now add the vathal. Roast in low flame.
6. As you roast, the vathal puffs up well. Test for doneness by crushing it to see if it gets powdered easily.
7. Transfer to the plate to cool down.
5. Place the roasted items in blender/ mixie once cooled. Add required salt.
6. Powder finely and transfer to airtight container.
Serve with hot steamed rice, mixed with ghee best or sesame oil.