Find a Recipe

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Ona sadya / Onam sadya / Kerala Onam Banquet

First of all all credits goes to this huge blogosphere who inspired me a lot from past 2 weeks by sharing some onam special dishes and i came accross so many delicious kerala recipes and so came a idea in my mind to make a onam sadya at my home for my H :). I enjoyed a lot while making this huge platter and this was our whole day meal !!..This is my first try to make Onasadya if I have made any mistake please forgive me. I love to explore all kind of cuisine and love to give my family a variety of choices to try, this is one such platter i have tried to explore . Thanks to my blogger friends who have inspired me cook this ona sadya this year at my home too. 

Being in chennai we loved to have south indian meals in restaurants and hotels. I have also made south indian platter many times at home , But haven't tried fully kerala cuisine platter so this was an wonderful chance and occasion for me to try and explore thru the dish. while Googling about onam platter i came to know many things about this Onasadya . Starting with " sadya" the name means ‘Banquet’ in malyalam refers not as an single dish but an huge and a grand feast serve for any auspicious occasion in kerala like marriage,Onam etc. The feast is always served in a plaintain leaf which used as a natural plate in south india and they use their hand to eat food which is our natural spoon right:). The sadya dishes are generally huge in num starting from 15 to 25 or more dishes.

This is the List of the menu i have made for sadya

Main dish : Plain Rice with ghee, Parippu curry (Lentil curry), Sambar (5 veggie lentil soup), Tomato Rasam ( Tomato soup)

Side dish : Erissery (pumkin and yam curry), Mapazham Pulissery (Mango Mor curry), Kalan (Yam in coconut gravy), Olan ( white pumpkin and cow peas curry), Aviyal (Mixed veggie in coconut gravy), Kadalai Thoran ( chickpea poriyal) , Papadam thoran (appalam poriyal), Beetroot Pachadi (raita), Cucumber pachadi

Snacks : Papadam and Upperi

Pickle : Mango achar/ Mango pickle

Dessert : Paal Payasam

Fruit : Banana

But still i didn't have time to make 2 more payasam , inji puli pickle, and 1 more pachadi which wud have made this sadya a complete platter. All the sadya recipe need a very main ingredient which is coconut followed by cumin, green chillies which is ground into paste and used in all the curry's and pachadi's . Kerala is a land of coconut so they use coconut oil and  make make coconut based gravy a lot. Even the rice they use is different which called Raw Kuthari Matta rice/Rosematta Rice which is thick , pink in color and very flavorful But i used normal white rice we get .

After a long search i got banana leaves here and they where in pieces so i just placed them other wise, if you have a whole leaf the tip of the leaf should point towards left for the one who is served. Now lets Move on to recipes of this grand feast.I referred the recipes from here  

 Staring with Main dish


Rice - 1 cup
Salt to taste 

I cooked my rice in rice cooker . So add 2 cups of water to the washed rice and cook in a rice cooker .

5 Kari Sambhar

I made use of 5 veggies to make this sambhar.


Toor dal or Sambar lentil- 1 cup, cooked in a pressure cooker with enough water
{Carrots, diced into medium size- 1 ( chopped)
Chow chow /Chayote (diced )- 1 small
Egg plant, (diced )- 1 (Indian variety)
Drumsticks, fresh cut long or frozen- 5 no’s
Bean cut in to 1" inch long - 1 cup}
Tomato - 1  medium sized
Green chillies, halved vertically- 2
Curry leaves- 2 sprig
Salt- to taste
Red Chilly powder- 1 tsp or adjust according to your taste
Turmeric powder-1/4 tsp
Coriander powder-1 1/2 tsp
sambhar pd - 2 tsp
Asafeotida-   a pinch
Tamarind 1 gooseberry sized - Soak it in  1/2 cup water and extact the tamarind water by nicely mashing the tamarind in the water and straining only the water.
Water - Make the sambhar thin

For Seasoning:

Onion (chopped) - 1 medum
Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
Whole dry red chillies-  2 small
Curry leaves- 1 sprig
Coconut oil/ Olive oil - 1 tbsp ( I used olive oil thou)


  • Pressure cook the dal with water till it sinks  , turmeric pd and tomatoes for 3 whistles.
  • After the pressure subsides remove the lid and mash the cooked dal well, add the tamarind extract to the dal.
  •  In a pan heat oil splutter mustard seeds , cumin seeds, curry leaves, whole red chillies . Then add onion and saute them well till transparent .
  • Add all the veggies,chilly powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, sambhar pd and asafoetida ,salt mix well and saute for a while.
  • Transfer this veggies to dal  , add required amount of water to make them thin.
  • Cook the veggies in dal till they all well done .
  • Let the dal boil well and once the veggies are done you can check for the consistency and add water if you to make them thin.

 You can even add coconut, cumin, green chilli - ground paste to this dal .

Tomato Rasam


5 medium sized Tomatoes
2 whole Red chillies
1 sprig Curry leaves
1/4 cup chopped Coriander leaves
11/2  tsp Rasam pd
1/4 tsp Cumin pd
 1/4 tsp Pepper pd
1 pinch Asafoetida
1 1/2 tsp Cumin seeds
1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
1 tbsp Ghee or oil
Salt to taste


  • Boil tomatoes, peel of the skin from tomatoes and crush then nicely in the same water .
  • crush all the juice from tomatoes and remove the left out flesh
  • Add cumin pd, pepper, pd, rasam pd salt to it .
  • In a pan heat ghee add asfoetida, mustard , cumin seeds once they splutter  add curry leaves, whole red chillis and then the tomato water.
  • Bring to a boil and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Keep aside covered for 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with coriander leaves
  • Serve hot as a soup or with steaming hot plain rice and papads

Parippu Curry


Toordal - 1 cup
Turmeric pd - 1/2 tsp

For seasoning

Red onion - 2 tbsp chopped
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
oil - 1 tbsp

To grind

Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp
Coconut (grated) - 1/2 cup 
Green chilly - 2
small onion  1 chopped

  •  In a pressure cooker cook washed toor dal with turmeric pd for 2- 3 whistle.
  • After the pressure subsides remove the lid and mash the dal well.
  • Grind coconut, cumin seed, small onion, green chillies in a mixer to a paste.
  • Add the ground mixer, water to make it a bit thin , salt and mix well.
  • For seasoning heat oil in a pan splutter mustard seeds, curry leaves, then add whole red chilli.
  • Saute some chopped onion in it  till transparent .
  • Now transfer this to dal and boil the dal for 2- 5 mins
  • Serve the with steamed rice, with some ghee drizzled on it.

Side Dishes



Chow chow/ choyate - 1/4 cup
Carrot -1/4 cup
Drumstick -1
Beans -7-8 chopped
Potato -1 diced
Curd -2 tbsp

For the grinding
Grated coconut - 1 cup
Cumin seeds /Jeera - 1/2 tsp
Green chilli -3

For the seasoning
Mustard seeds - 1/4 tsp
 Oil - 2-3 tsp
Curry leaves - few

  • Peel the skin and cut all the vegetables into 2 inch long piece.
  • Coarsely grind grated coconut, green chillies , and cumin seeds. Keep it aside.
  • Cook all the veggies in pan with ample a mount of water and turmeric pd till they turn soft.
  • Once they are done strain them add the grounded coconut paste and cook for a few minutes. Remove from flame.
  • Add curd and mix well and salt if needed.
  • It is an delicious side dish for rice goes well with adai too .

Mampazham Pulissery


Yogurt-  1 1/2 cup
Small ripe mango slices-2 to 3 slice ( I took them with skin and also used the seed)
Green chilies- 2 to 3 nos
Red chili powder- 1/4 tsp
Turmeric powder- 1/2 tsp
Salt- to taste
Water- as required

To grind 

Grated coconut- 1/2 cup
Cumin seeds- 1/2 tsp
Green chillies - 1 -2 Nos
Water- as required

For Tempering

Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves- 1 sprigs
Coconut oil /  olive oil - as required


  • Beat yogurt and salt to taste in a mixing bowl and set aside.
  • Grind together the ingredients under "To grind: and Keep aside.
  • In a pan combine ripe mango,green chilies,red chili powder,turmeric powder and water.
  • Cover and cook until it turns soft.Add the prepared coconut paste and cook for about 3- 4 minutes, bring it to just a boil  and turn off the stove.
  •  Now slowly add yogurt ,stirring well as you do so.Add more salt and water if required.
  • Heat oil in pan and add mustard seeds,let it splutter.Add curry leaves .
  • Add this tempering  to the prepared curry and mix well.
  • Serve with rice.

Mathanga Erissery


Yellow pumkin - 1cup
Elephant yam - 1 cup
Red chilli pd - 1 tsp
turmeric pd - 1/2 tsp
Green chilles - 2 nos

To grind
1 tbsp cumin
1 cup coconut scraped

For seasoning
Curry leave 1 sprig
2 tbsp Onion chopped
1/4 tsp mustard seeds


  • In a pressure cooker add pumkin, yam, green chillies, red chilli pd, turmeric pd and cook them for 2 whistles with very less water added .
  • Grind all the ingredients under "To grind"
  • After they are done open the lid and mix in the ground paste to the pumkin and yam, mix  them well .
  • For seasoning heat oil in a pan add mustard seeds, curry leaves once they start to spultter, add onion and saute till transparent transfer this tempering to the curry and boil it for 2 - 3 mins. 
  • Serve hot as a side or with steamed rice.



1 cup cubed of elephant yam 

1/ 2  cup  Beaten yogurt 

2 no's green chillies 

1/2 tsp turmeric powder 

1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds 

1/2 tsp mustard seeds 
1 tsp pepper pd 
1 - 2 no dry red chillies 
1 sprig Curry leaves 

2 tsp oil

To grind

1 1/2 cups of grated coconut 

1/2 tsp cumin seeds 


  •  Grind the coconut and cumin seeds to a smooth paste without adding water and keep aside. 
  • Cook the yam in little water  till they are well done chk by inserting a fork in it after which stir in turmeric powder and salt. 
  • When the water dries up, add yogurt and mix well. Lower the flame.
  • When the curd boils and becomes dry and thick, add the ground coconut mixture and the fenugreek powder. Stir well. Bring to a boil and then remove from flame. 
  • Heat 3 teaspoons of ghee in a small frying pan. Splutter mustard seeds, dry red chillies and curry leave and add it to the Kalan. 



White Pumpkin cubes – 1 cup
Green chillies (split) – 2 no. 
Coconut milk –  Thin 1/2 cup ,Thick 1 cup
Red chori/ cow peas– 1/4 cup (cooked in pressure cooker with som salt) 
1 sprig Curry leaves
Salt to taste
oil – 3 tsp

  • In a pan  take pumpkin cubes , green chillies, thin coconut milk and boil them . 
  • Stir a bit cover the pan and cook for five minutes. 
  • Remove the lid add red chori and mix well. 
  • Now add salt ,curry leaves, thick coconut milk. Stir a bit and mix well. Pour some coconut oil on top. Stir again.
  • The Olan is ready !!.


Kadalai Thoran


 Black chana (kadalai) - 1 cup

 Grated coconut - 1/2 cup

 Small onion -  2- 3 chopped

Green chillies- 2-3 

Red chillies -  1 tsp

Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp

Oil - 1 1/2 tbsp

Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp

Curry leaves - 1 sprigs


  • Soak kadalai for 8-10 hours.  Pressure cook with water for 10-15 minutes. Add salt and mix. 
  •  Heat  oil in a pan a splutter mustard seeds, curry leaves and then add red chilli pd  and mix in the
  • Grind coconut, small onion, green chillies, turmeric in a mixer to form a coarse paste.
  • Heat oil in another pan and splutter mustard seeds. Fry red chilli and curry leaves. To this add cooked black channa and stir well.
  • Now add the ground paste to the channa and also salt as needed.
  • Cook for 2- 3 mins and turn off the flame.

Papadam Thoran


Papadam/ papad/ appalam fried -  2
Oil - 1 tsp
whole redchilli - 2 nos
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Curryleaves - 1 sprig
Coconut grated - 2 tbsp 

  • In a pan heat oil splutter the mustard seeds, add curry leaves,
  • whole redchilli, grated coconut and saute till the coconut turn slightly brown
  •  At last crush the papadam or padam in this mix and remove from flame.

Cucumber pachadi

Cucumber 1cup chopped
salt to taste
Yogurt - 1/2 cup

To grind
Coconut grated - 1 cup
cumin seeds- 1/2 tsp
Green chilly - 1 no

  • In a pan cook cucumber in a little amt of water with salt.
  • Grind the ingredients under "To grind"
  • Once the cummber are well cooked add the group paste in to the cucumber and mix well
  • Add salt .
  • For tempering In a pan heat oil splutter some mustard seeds, curry leaves and whole red chilly
  • add the tempering to cucumber.
  • Cool this mixture well before adding yogurt . Add yogurt and mix them well. Cucumber Pachadi is ready !!

Beetroot Pachadi


Beetroot - 1 small
salt to taste
Yogurt - 1/2 cup
To grind
Coconut grated - 1 cup
cumin seeds- 1/2 tsp
green chilly - 1 no


  • Peel the beetroot and cut into cubes.
  • Cook them in a pan with little water and salt.
  • After the beetroot is well cooked grind them in to puree
  • Grind the ingredients under "To grind".
  • In another pan heat oil  splutter mustard seeds curry leaves, add the purees beetroot, red chilli pd.
  • After it boils add the ground paste and mix well.
  • After it cools down completely add yogurt to it.


Upperi/Banana Chips


Cut pieces of raw plantain – 1
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying


  • Heat oil in a pan. Take a bowl and some water.
  •  Add turmeric , followed by the pieces of raw plantain. Take the plantain pieces out and dry them with the help of a clean cloth or a tissue/ kitchen towel. 
  • Put the pieces into the pan for deep frying. When it gets half fried, add liquefied salt ( In a bowl take salt and mix a tiny amt of water) very slowly in the oil one tsp in a go.
  •  Once all the pieces become crispy, remove them from the oil.


Mango Achar


Raw Mango - 1 cup ( diced into small cubes)
Red chilli pd - 1/2 tsp
Turmeric pd - 1/4 tsp
Salt to taste
Oil - 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves 1 sprig


  • In a pan heat oil add mustard seeds , curry leave once it splutter.
  • Add red chilli pd, turmric pd , salt and add some water (so that the masala stick to the mangoes very well) and then add mango and saute for a while .
  • Remove from flame . The water in it must have evaporated, leave it a little juicy if you like.

Pal Payasam 


White rice - 1/3 cup
Milk (with more fat content) - 4 cups
Sugar - 1/2 cup heaped  or to taste
Cashews - 2- 3 (chopped)
Rasins - 3-4 
Ghee -  1tsp


  • Wash the white rice and in a pan add the rice and 2 - 3tbsp of water  or more and cook them till they are half done. 
  • Now add Milk to the half done rice and reduce the milk to 3/4 of its original quantity and let the rice cook in the milk.
  • Once the rice is cooked and the milk is a bit thickened add sugar and mix well.
  • Boil the payasam in low flame for  10 - 15 minute more. 
  • Turn off the flame , in another pan add ghee, chopped cashews, rasins and saute till slightly golden brown and transfer it to payasam.
  • Serve warm.

Note : Adjust the spice, salt , sugar and tamarind  in the respective recipes according to your taste.

Wish you all a happy Onam .. I know am late but it took me so much time to write this post pardon me dearies :)

Linky it to Blogging marathon For letter O under regional theme :)

Logo courtesy : Preeti

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 32


  1. speechless, this is such a grand feast, u made everything and all the recipes looks so yumm and inviting...great effort Manju! Hats off...U are Awesome!! Hugs dear :)

  2. Manju hats off to you for creating this awesome feast seriously Bhaiya is lucky to have you, I am sure he enjoyed everything. And I really wonder how you managed to cook everything in one day really you are a pro and you also managed to take step wise clicks wow :) you are awesome

  3. WOW!!!!!!!!!!!all I can say is WOW!!such an awesome spread Manju,looks super tempting and fabulous...Wonderful Onam sadya spread...

  4. Omg, breathtaking sadya, my stomach is just full just seeing all ur beautiful dishes, wat an effort, seriously u proved again that u are a thali queen. Great going Manju, wish to see more and more thalis from u..

  5. Wow wow... hats off 2 u, Manju!!! Really admire ur spirit... this is just 2 good...

  6. OMG.. Thats a grand feast.. Such a wonderful spread.. Tempting Sadya spread.. Wish you stay near my home..

  7. Wow...That was a fantastic spread..So many dishes !!! looks really awesome & inviting...great effort Manju...

  8. Dats a great-grand visual treat for my eyes.... hats off to u...:)

  9. Awesome feast, what more can I say?! Seriously, this is one of the best blog posts I've ever read- a mini cookbook in one post. Hats off to you and your cooking, writing and photography skills :)

  10. OMG its really breathtaking, what a lovely sadya spread??? I am really speechless, gr8 effort and wonderful clicks... awesome, awesome, awesome....

  11. OMG :) .. speechless dear Manju. I can clearly see how much of work was put into this .. great job.

  12. wonderful spread and such a hard work...kudos to you for this long post and delicious recipes...

  13. WOW, what an incredible spread Manju.. Kudos to your patience and hard work. Everything here looks so authentic and delicious.. Great job!!!!!

  14. Great! amazing spread ...

  15. great,great,great work manju,hats off to u.amazing and speechless

  16. Speechless ! ITs not easy to write a post with elaborated details!

  17. If we all go speechless there will be no comments on the blog...
    Truly an awesome spread..for a North Indian like me it is a lot to learn..I know a few dishes but have to learn many from this sadya.
    Book marking the post..and hope to take all the help required for trying a Sadya like this in the near future.
    Kudos for all the effort .it surely needs lots and lots of passion and patience. .
    Fantastic effort.

  18. You have done a great job. Awesome sadhya with visual treat

  19. wow what a visual treat so nice. I feel very bad that I am not your neighbor must have popped in to your house at this onam season so lovely and very nicely displayed.

  20. Out of words here!!! bookmarked this entire page... love to try them all... you are making me hungry now!!!


  21. wow!all these food look delicious,they are delicious when eat on a banana leaf.Once I had some Onam food with a Kerala friend and I still remember the taste....

  22. Wow ! you have done an incredible job . Being a North Indian I can imagine , I am speechless..
    Hats off o you !!

  23. Amazing spread... Believe me when i am saying am literally drooling... It is such a visual treat and am longing for such sadya. Kudos for your patience.

  24. Wow! The platter looks great!! A vegetable thoran would have been more authentic than chickpea/pappadam. Also pulissery is for mixing with rice and having (just like sambar). Great effort and hats off for doing so much :)!

  25. Amazing platter. A real visual treat.

  26. OMG..Am speechless dear,really awesome thali!!

  27. What an awesome post Manjula!!! I am really spellbound at your spread. How did you ever manage to cook and click all this!!! Love this post and hat's off to your efforts!

  28. What an awesome spread!..great job..for one letter you managed to make so much..everything looks out of the world! and rofl on Vaishali's comment!

  29. OMG!!!what is this...its breathtaking... hw u manage to cook all these in single day da... my god my god... super energetic n with step wise pic... Super virtual feast da... superb superb superb...

  30. Wow, I appreciate your effort dear.. Such a fabulous platter & u have made all so perfectly.. Love those awesome clicks :)

  31. That's a delectable, traditional, festive meal. Worth the efforts I guess.

  32. OMG. A feast fit for a king. Beautifully explained and wonderfully shot. Delicious.

  33. OMG - so much work for 1 post. everything looks so delectable!

  34. Manjula, when are you inviting me to your house?? Need to taste all these awesome dishes. You rock....

  35. A complete out of the world job Manjula! Can't stop admiring your patience, efficiency and energy! Hats off to you!!!

  36. Amazing gal. I could feel the time and effort behind this post.. Kudos.. Hats off :) Wish u were my neighbour

  37. what a beautiful spread, mind blowing, you actually tried because u love to cook, thats truly special, keep up

  38. Wow! What a delicious treat,great serving:)!

  39. A very traditional spread! Kudos to your effort in researching and making this happen!

  40. just one word - mindblowing :-)) next Onam, I am inviting myself over, or even before that perhaps :) whatsay !

  41. OMG.....that is such a great post and wondering how you cooked so much.....awesome

  42. Who can say no to this irresistible and mouthwatering full platter.

  43. Omg ! You are rocking manjula ! Absolutely divine..

  44. Wow Manju this is awesome. I am stunned you have really worked so hard to make this awesome banquet. Wow as you can make out I do not have words to say amything except go on parrot like as awesome.


Thank you for Visiting desi fiesta and dropping your wonderful comments , Your comments means a lot to me :) . My gentle request to all the readers plz do not give links in the comment box .. I will visit your blogs for sure, trust me !! :)