Delicious and Nutritious Bachali Kura Pappu Recipe for Sankranti Celebrations


Sankranti, our vibrant harvest festival, is approaching, setting the perfect mood for celebration and culinary delights at home. Amidst the hustle of cleaning, shopping for the family, and preparing delectable sweets and savories, one dish that stands out during this festive season is the Bachala kura Pappu.

Embracing Malabar Spinach: The Heartwarming Delight

Known by various names across different Indian languages like Bachali in Andhra, Basale in Kannada, Vaali Bhaji in Konkani, Mayalu in Marathi, and Pui Shak in Bengali, Malabar Spinach takes the center stage in this traditional dish. Its vibrant green, glossy leaves, thick with a spongy texture, emit a slimy juice akin to okra when sliced. However, this sliminess fades away when cooked, leaving behind a nutritious treasure.

A Protein-Rich Culinary Experience

Bachala Kura Pappu is a vegan dish packed with protein, making it an ideal choice for health-conscious individuals. Its preparation often involves combining these nutritious greens with either masoor or tur dal. Alternatively, it pairs deliciously with yam, known as kanda bachali, or as a mustard powder-based stew called ava pettina pulusu.

Recipe: Bachala Kura Pappu

Preparation Time: 20 minutes 


Serves: 3-4 persons 

Cuisine: Andhra


– 1 small cup of pigeon peas lentils

– 2 cups of chopped and densely packed Malabar spinach

– 1 onion, chopped

– Big pinch of turmeric powder

– 2-3 green chilies, slit lengthwise

– 1/2 tsp chopped ginger

– Salt to taste

– 2 cups water

– 1 tbsp tamarind paste

For Seasoning/Poppu/Tadka:

– 1/2 tsp mustard seeds

– 1 tsp cumin seeds

– 1 tsp urad dal/minappa pappu/split gram dal (optional)

– 3-4 garlic cloves, crushed

– 2 dry red chilies, deseeded and torn

– 10-12 fresh curry leaves

– 2-3 tsps oil

Cooking Instructions:

1. In a pressure cooker, combine dal, bachala kura, onions, green chilies, ginger, and turmeric powder. Add 2 cups of water and pressure cook until you hear 2 whistles. Alternatively, cook over a stovetop until the dal is nearly cooked.

2. Heat oil in a heavy-bottomed vessel. Add mustard seeds and let them splutter. Next, add cumin seeds, urad dal (if using), crushed garlic, red chilies, and curry leaves. Stir-fry for about 30 seconds.

3. Incorporate this seasoning into the pressure-cooked dal mixture, along with salt and tamarind paste diluted in 1/2 cup of water. Cook over a gentle to medium flame for 7-10 minutes without covering, until the desired consistency is attained.

4. Serve this delightful Bachala Kura Pappu alongside white rice and a complementing stir-fried dish.


Bachala Kura Pappu stands as a testament to traditional Indian cuisine, offering not just a delightful culinary experience but also a healthy addition to your Sankranti celebrations. Embrace the richness of Malabar Spinach in this heartwarming dish, perfect for the festive season.


Q1: What is Bachala Kura Pappu?
A1: Bachala Kura Pappu is a traditional South Indian dish made with Malabar Spinach (also known as Bachali or Bachala Kura) and pigeon peas lentils (dal), seasoned with spices and herbs.

Q2: What are the ingredients required to make Bachala Kura Pappu?
A2: The ingredients needed for Bachala Kura Pappu include pigeon peas lentils, chopped Malabar spinach, onion, turmeric powder, green chilies, ginger, salt, water, tamarind paste, and various spices for seasoning.

Q3: How do you prepare Bachala Kura Pappu?
A3: To prepare Bachala Kura Pappu, first cook the lentils and Malabar spinach with onions, green chilies, ginger, and turmeric powder. Then, prepare a seasoning with mustard seeds, cumin seeds, urad dal, garlic, red chilies, and curry leaves. Combine the seasoning with the cooked lentils and spinach along with tamarind paste diluted in water. Cook until desired consistency is achieved.

Q4: What is the significance of Bachala Kura Pappu during Sankranti?
A4: Bachala Kura Pappu is a popular dish during Sankranti as it is nutritious, protein-rich, and perfect for festive celebrations. It showcases the abundance of seasonal greens and pulses, aligning with the spirit of the harvest festival.

Q5: Can Bachala Kura Pappu be served with any other dishes?
A5: Yes, Bachala Kura Pappu can be served alongside white rice and complemented with stir-fried dishes or other traditional South Indian accompaniments.

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