Lime leaves podi, known as narthailai podi in tamil, an aromatic and flavorsome rice mix powder made with fresh lemon leaves and lentils.Jump to Recipe
Table of contents
Rice Mix Powders
Thengai podi is my mother’s specialty and she packs me a stash when I return back to my base from my Chennai vacation, something which hasn’t happened for the past 2 years, God only knows when we can travel again.
About the Recipe
I love dry spice powders, particularly the ones that can be mixed with rice. Kafir lime leaves are aromatic and have a zesty zingy astringent flavor. When combined with dal and spices, you get an amazing condiment.
This narthailai podi, a rice mix powder can be used as a garnish on other dishes like poha, upma and can also be paired with curd rice. I won’t recommend this like idly podi, as the lime leaves flavor is too dominant and won’t taste nice when paired with idly as a dipping side.
The days, I m not in a mood to make an elaborate lunch, these dry rice mix powders come very handy. Just mix a tablespoon of the rice mix powder to hot steaming rice, a generous drizzle of gingely oil/ghee, you are settled. Serve it with some crisp or make a dry curry, that’s it you have a delicious and comforting lunch.
Spice powders vs Rice mix powders
The rice mix powders also acts as home remedies many times. Freshly roasted & pounded cumin with some salt helps to ease your stuffy nose and your stomach. Like wise freshly pounded black pepper mixed with steaming hot rice, helps to ease your bad throat. These are age-old grandma’s food secrets, which sometimes get lost in the family.
Varieties of Dry Spice Powders
- Lemon leaves, I have used fresh kafir lime leaves for the podi.
- Mint leaves, I have used a handful of mint leaves in the recipe, this completely optional, can be omitted.
- Dal, I have used chana dal and urad dal, they add volume to the narthailai podi.
- Spices, I have used black peppercorns and red chilies to spice the lime leaves podi. Peppercorns are optional, one can omit them.
- Sesame seeds, coriander seeds and flax seeds, they add a nice texture and also increase health quotient of the narthailai podi.
Step by Step instructions to make Narthailai podi
Please check recipe card below for exact measurements of each ingredient used and also for the detailed instructions
- Wash the kaffir lime leaves in water, drain well. Pick out any bad leaf, like leaves with lot of brown spots or black spots.
- Dry the leaves on a kitchen towel for 15-20 minutes. Take the leaves in a Microwave safe pan. Microwave high the leaves for 3-4 minutes, in 2 minute intervals, until the leaves come out bone dry.
- Heat a kadai with a drop of oil. Roast chana dal, urad dal and coriander seeds. Mid way add black pepper, white sesame and flaxseeds. When the flaxseeds pop angrily, add the red chilies.
- Now finally add the dried kaffir lime leaves, mint leaves and asafoetida. Take it off the stove and let it cool down completely.
- Take the cooled ingredients in a mixer jar, add salt and grind it to a powder. Store the narthaelai podi in an air tight container. Enjoy it with steaming hot rice.
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Kafir Lime Leaves Podi | Rice Mix Powder | NarthaIlai Podi
- Indian style mixie or any heavy blender
- 200 grams Fresh Kafir lime leaves | Lemon leaves
- ¼ cup dried mint leaves optional
- ½ cup urad dal
- ¼ cup chana dal
- 2 tablespoon coriander seeds
- 1 tablespoon black peppercorns optional
- 2 tablespoon white sesame seeds
- 2 tablespoon flax seeds optional
- 18-20 nos nos red chilies
- ½ teaspoon hing/asafoetida
- 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
- Wash the fresh kafir lime leaves in water, pick out any leaves with brown spots. Drain the leaves well. Dry them on a kitchen towel for 10-15 minutes.
- Next step is to dry the leaves completely. If you have the space, then sun dry them for 2 days. I dont have the space, so i chose to dry them in the microwave.
- Take the lime leaves in a microwave safe tray, Microwave high for 3-4 minutes, in 2 minutes interval until they are completely dry. The leaves should be bone dry, when you press them between your fingers they should crackle and go powdery. Keep them aside until use.
- In a heavy bottom pan/kadai, add a drop of oil, add chana dal, urad dal and coriander seeds and roast them golden brown. Keep the flame medium and keep stirring to avoid burning.
- Midway through the roasting, add black pepercorns, white sesame seeds and flaxseeds. When the flaxseeds starts to pop angrily, add the red chilies to this.
- Finally add the dried kafir lime leaves, dried mint leaves and hing. Let it sit on the stove for a minute. Take it off the stove and let this cool down completely.
- Once cooled down, take these ingredients in a mixer jar, add salt and grind it to a powder. Let the ground powder cool down to store
- Store the narthailai podi in a clean air-tight container on the kitchen counter.
- Serve this aromatic narthailai podi with steaming hot rice and a drizzle of gingely oil/ghee.
- The ingredients mentioned optional, can be omitted completely.
- The lime leaves can also be sun dried. If sun drying, It needs at least a day or two to dry out completely.
Serve this aromatic and flavorsome narthailai podi along with rice and a generous drizzle of gingely oil/ghee. The lemon leaves podi can be used as a garnish for poha, upma and with curd rice.