A group of people eating Puttu and Kadala curry in a busy restaurant located in Kerala

Puttu and Kadala curry: The distinguished dish of Kerala

Namaskaram you wonderful people, hope everything is well. Today, we are delving into the magnificent world of salivating Kerala delights which offer us that is is often known for in the world of distinguished culinary dishes. In this travel blog, we will discuss about the culturally rich and traditional dish Puttu and Kadala curry, along with its significance and popularity in the region. We will also suggest some the restaurant that serves this amazing dish so that you may never go hungry during your travel in Kerala.

After all, we beautiful human beings are alive for many things we desire but one of the important one is food, and we surely will not let your tummy suffer with bad food. So, lets being our journey into the the beautiful world of traditional Kerala dishes.

1. Puttu -Origin and History

Puttu and kadala curry served alongside tea and some slices of banana
Puttu in Kerala

Puttu and Kadala curry is one of the most top-rated and loved traditional curry of Kerala. This dish is a well-known breakfast combination that served in the early morning during breakfast in Kerala, India. Originally the Puttu traces back it’s roots to the Tamil Nadu state where the Puttu found its origin. Unfortunately there is no proofs of when this dish was first invented, but it was definitely complimented with its citations in many of the popular legends in South of India.

It can be seen mentioned in the early 15th century, in the book named Thirupugazhu (Musical Way of Worship) by a renowned poet Saint Arunagirinathar, The book is about the devotion to Lord Murugan in which Arunagiriathar tries to write for those who are seeking inspiration on their spiritual journey through devotional poetry.

The Puttu can be seen savored in different place of India which includes Pondicherry and especially the Tamil regions of Sri Lanka where it is known as Pittu in Sinhala. Although there is a very similar dish to the Puttu in Assam, which is known as Sungapitha, which contributes to the ancient history of this amazing dish.

There are also some debate regarding that Puttu was introduced by the Portuguese mentioned in Eating with History by Tanya Abraham , which was needed to feed the numerous men of its army, rice was powdered and steamed in cylindrical bamboo pipe, which was easily cooked over a pot of boiling water on ships. But it doesn’t match with the fact that rice production in Portugal was documented in the early 18th century.

Ingredients needed for Puttu

  1. The Kerala styled- Puttu is primarily consists of finely grated coconut, ground rice, salt and some water.
  2. It is usually spiced with cumin but other spices can be involved to change the taste buds
  3. Different types of Puttu exist with tradtional cross overs coming in the frame, Sri Lankan version uses wheat flour or red rice flour to make their Puttu without the involvement of cumin, meanwhile the Bhatkal version uses plain coconut flavored witht he aid of shrimp or mutton.
  4. While many folks use a cylindrical Puttu maker, the residents in Kerala village use banana leaves and bamboo shoots to make it.
  5. If you plan on making Puttu at home you can refer to Hebbar’s kitchen

2. Kadala Curry – Origin and History

Puttu and Kadala curry being served over a banana leaf
Kadala Curry

The Kadala curry is a classical dish from Kerala cuisine, which is made using black chickpeas which is known as Kala Chana in Hindi language and Kadala meaning chickpeas in Malayalam language). The Kadala curry is a flavorful spicy treat to the mouth which is served alongside other dishes such as appam, idiyappam and especially Puttu, which is a famous dish in Kerala known as Puttu and Kadala curry.

The Kadala curry is different from your regular black chickpeas curry as it involves the usage of curry leaves, coconut milk or coconut paste, spices such as mustard seeds, onions and tamarind extract to give the curry an overall likeable sourness. The Kadala curry varies with different families in the south as each family has a different recipe which has been passed on to them for generations.

Some make the Kadala with thinner gravy, while some opt for a semi-dry or thickened version. Though Kala Chana is very well-known around the world, due to the usage of tropical ingredients, it sets it apart from its North Indian version of kala chana curry. This Kadala curry showcases the diverse offerings of the beautiful state of Kerala.

Ingredients needed for Kadala Curry

  1. This unique Malayali Kadala curry consists of black chickpeas which is usually pre-soaked for at least 7 hours.
  2. The curry uses variety of spice blends including fennel seeds, cinnamon stick, cloves and nutmeg to bring about a vibrant flavor.
  3. Curry leave and the coconut paste are the important elements of the curry which give it the unique Kerala flavor.
  4. The curry is often paired with different grains which include quinoa, red rice and millets giving you a diverse option in a simplistic traditional Keralite dish.

3. Restaurants serving Puttu and Kadala curry in Kerala

The Puttu and Kadala curry is one of the most prominent dishes of Kerala which highlight its vibrant culture and traditions which can be made at home but since this article is for those travlers who are roaming the beautiful streets and valleys of Kerala, we have curated a list of traditional Kerala restaurants across the Kerala state which serve these salivating Puttu and Kadala curry. Here is a list of some of the these restaurants.

  1. Kashi Art Cafe, known for its delicious Puttu near to Fort Kochi.
  2. Grand Pavillion, offering yout the traditional Puttu breakfast located in Kottayam.
  3. Saravana Bhavan, a popular chain that serves you traditional Puttu in Kochi
  4. Dhe Puttu, for its traditional way of serving , located in Ernakulam
  5. Puttu Kada, another restaurant with the famous traditional dish in Ernakulam.
  6. Brindhavan Vegetarian Restaurant which is a pure vegetarian restaurant in Kochi.


  • Chandan Senapati

    I have 10 years of experience in the field of Travel and Lifestyle Industry. I have written more than 450 articles for various reputed platforms such as Huffington Post, MensXP, and Daily Mail. Having an immense passion for writing and a deep interest in the Travel and lifestyle industry.

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