I love this simple side dish with its perfect combination of beetroot and cumin.

Beetroot Pachadi

When beetroot and cumin come together it's a marriage made in tastebud heaven
Course Relish
Cuisine Sri Lankan
Prep Time 30 minutes


  • 1.5 cups Beetroot
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tsp channa (yellow) dhal or split pea
  • 1 tsp cumin seed
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 1 green or red chili
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp tamarind syrup or pulp


  • Peel the beetroot then grate it
  • Pour the oil in the frying pan and turn the cooker plate on
  • Chop the garlic small and add to the frying pan
  • Add the channa (yellow) dhal or split peas to the frying pan
  • Add the cumin seed to the frying pan
  • Strip the leaves of the sprig of curry leaf and add to the pan. Be careful, they can spit so stand back.
  • Add the whole red or green chilli
  • Let all of this saute for 5 minutes, stirring it with the wooden spoon or spatula so the ingredients don't stick to the pan
  • Add the grated beetroot to the frying pan and let it cook for 10 minutes, stirring now and then to stop it sticking to the pan
  • Take the frying pan off the fire and leave the ingredients to cool for 10 - 15 minutes
  • Put all the ingredients and the teaspoon of tamarind in the spice/coffee grinder or blender
  • Blend till you have a smooth paste.
  • Serve as a side dish with curry or as an entree dip with flatbread or vegetable sticks