This is one of the traditional dishes of Karnataka, which is also popular in parts of Tamil
Nadu (in a slightly varied version though, and is called Mor KoLambu). It is a simple,
tasty, low fat, semi liquid, commonly mixed and eaten with rice. In its simplest form it has
no vegetables at all, but there are a select variety of vegetables, each of which add a
distinct taste to this exquisite dish. Only a single vegetable is used in this unique dish.
HuLi Majjige with a little of HuLi Mosaru (sour curds or yogurt kept out of fridge for 1 day
or so, with butter milk)
green chilies 5/6 (hasi meNasina kayi)
1 teaspoon of cumin seeds (jeerige’)
2 spoons of Dhaniya (Kothumbari beeja) or a few cut pieces of Dhaniya leaves
half a spoon of mustard (Saasuve’)
two spoons of Kadale beLe” (Chana dal/ bengal gram) soaked in water for half-an-hour
a pinch of turmeric powder (AriSinada pudi)
a pinch of hing (asafetida)
one half of a coconut (grated fresh) or one handful of the dry variety can be soaked in water
for half-an-hour and used
small piece (strawberry sized) of ginger
two seeds of whole black pepper.
Grind the ingredients in a pestle (or dry grinder). Add half a litre of Majjige (buttermilk +
sour yogurt) to it and allow it to warm up. Add salt to taste, and water to make the mixture
fairly thick but semi-liquid. Just as it starts to boil, switch off the heat, add a few curry
leaves (Kari-bevina soppu). For oggarane (phodni/tarka) first heat a spoon of oil, add
mustard seeds, after they split take off the heat, add one-half broken red chili. After it
cools, add it to the boiling hot Majjige HuLi.
Only one vegetable gets into the Majjige HuLi. This is necessary to maintain the unique
flavour combination of that vegetable and Majjge’ HuLi.
1. BENDE KAAYI (Bhindi/Okhra): Wipe each okhra with a semi-wet cloth. Allow it to
dry. Cut them into really small pieces of not over half an inch. In a separate BaNale’ (Wok
or fry pan) keep a few spoons of oil, heat it and then put the okhra (Bende’ kaayi) and
continue frying on low fire. In about 5/10 minutes they will fry fairly well changing colour,
to avoid the ends getting burnt, low fire and continuous stirring is needed. Add little
amounts of oil, if needed. After frying, transfer them into the Majjige’ Huli, and start the
2. BADANE’ KAAYI (Baingon/egg plant): The thin, longer variety is preferable, but the
fat version can be used if cut properly. Cut them first into half (circumference-cut), then
each cylidrical piece into further half, another half will make each quarter of the
cylindrical piece (the ideal size), the length being no more than 1and1/2 to 2 inches
maximum. Keep a bowl of water and put the cut pieces into this water.This prevents
browning of the cut edges and keeps the edges clean and whitish. Then use a BaNale’ (Wok
or fry pan) to fry them with 2 spoons of oil. If eggplant is the longer variety, closing the lid
will allow easier cooking and needs less oil. But the fat variety of egg plant has more
moisture, so will become soggy and watery if lid is closed. It therefore needs an open pan
frying and more oil.
3. Soppu (Spinach): This is the simplest of all since it has be just cut into small pieces and
put into the Majjige HuLi.
4. BOODA KUMBALA KAAYI (Ash-gourd): One of the classic vegetables that blends
ideally with Majjige HuLi. The Ash gourd is usually cut into large pieces of 2 inch square.
These pieces come out naturally as one cuts the gourd, takes away the seeds and starts
cutting them into rectangular pieces after removing the thick, hard skin. The pieces are
direclty put into the Majjige HuLi and as heated the watery pieces absorb the soury/salty
juices making it a wonderful experience when you eat them. This is also the most common
vegetable used in ceremonial occassions (marriages etc.,).
5. Cucumber: Somewhat like the Ashgourd but not quite as good is the cucumber. All
water-based vegetles need to be cut into larger pieces, else they melt away as they are
boiled. Even here just remove the skin and cut the cucumber into large pieces of 2 inches,
cut cylindrically first and then just split into half once. Add the pieces directly to the
6. DoNNe MeNasina Kaayi (green pepper): One of the good vegetables that adds its
distinct flavour to the Majjige HuLi. Cut it into larger pieces and put it directly, before
starting the heating process. Alternately, the pieces can be boiled/cooked in plain water
and then added to the Majjige HuLi at the boiling point.
ENJOY, THE UNIQUE FLAVOUR OF KARNATAKA – ITS SIMPLE AND HEALTHY