Southern Indian Thali was successfully added to your basket

Southern Indian Thali
Southern Indian Thali
Southern Indian Thali

Southern India is a haven for vegetarians and vegans. Tamil Nadu is almost exclusively vegetarian and in Kerala there are wonderful coconut dishes. On this course we delve into the rich flavours of Kerala and the spicy thalis of Tamil Nadu. 

Course Details

We will start by making fresh spice blends: Bese bele, a southern garam masala and Sambaar powder, a Tamil Nadu spice mix enriched with lentils.

You'll learn to identify unusual ingredients and where to source them and about ingredients and dishes that are specific to Kerala and Tamil Nadu. For example, the Keralan coast is lined with coconut palms and coconuts feature in many Keralan dishes.  In Tamil Nadu, rice and lentils are staple foods and we will make the traditional breakfast of fermented rice and lentil batter for steaming iddlis. For lunch we will make thalis, a selection of vegetable curries served on a a metal thali plate. 

We will cook with Indian vegetables such as chow chow, methi leaves, long beans, green papaya and baby aubergines. Use the flavours of jaggary, tamarind and coconut and spices such as cardamom, cinnamon, cumin, ginger, cloves, garlic, turmeric, coriander and fresh curry leaves.

Dishes we are likely to make are for example:

  • A Tamil Nadu breakfast: 
  • Iddlis or Dosa with Rasam and coconut Chutney
  • A Southern Indian Thali:
  • Brinjal Gosthu - grilled aubergine pickle
  • Sambaar - a spicy lentil soup with chow chow, methi and tempered spices
  • Keralan Coconut Curry with aubergine, long beans and green papaya
  • Samba Sadham - Temple food - cashew rice with pepper and cumin
  • Tamarind Chutney
  • Kheer - Creamy Coconut Rice Pudding with cardamon and pistachio

For each course we choose the recipes that fit the season, depending on time of year and the availability and seasonality of produce.

The day will include hands on cookery as well as some demonstrations. The day will finish with a delicious meal which you will have made. You will receive a pack of recipes to take home including a full guide to Indian spices and unusual ingredients; where to buy them and how to use and store them.

Time: 10a.m. - 4.30p.m.

Fantastic day - lots of fun and learnt a lot. Great tutors - so informative and knowledgable.

Perfect balance. It was lovely to have so much pre-prepared; so many beautiful fresh ingredients

Great. I liked the contrast and liked the division in to hot, medium and mild 'chilli factor' groups.

Book Online

  • This course is now full.
  • This course is now full.
Dietary Suitability
  • Vegan
  • Dairy Free
  • Wheat Free
  • Soy Free

This course is suitable for those on a vegan, dairy free or wheat-free diet. For other special dietary requirements, please let us know ahead of time so we can plan accordingly.

Skill Level
  •   Beginner

Helen Lawrence

About the tutor

Helen has come from being Head Chef at Demuths, a post she filled for 5 years, in which time Demuths won Best Restaurant in Bath award 2007 and Vegan Restaurant of the Year 2009. She is a trained chef and has trained in classical French cooking, with a passion for French patisserie, also an expert in knife skills and chefs tips. She enjoys the creativity of vegetarian and vegan cooking, lifting vegetables to the central position, they deserve in our diets.