Type Stew
Place of origin India
Region or state Indian subcontinent
Main ingredients Vegetables, spices
Cookbook: Poṟiyal  Media: Poṟiyal

Poṟiyal (Tamil:பொரியல்) is the Tamil word for a fried, or sometimes sauteed, vegetable dish. The Kannada word for the same dish is Palya and in Telugu, it is Porutu. It is usually made by shallow frying shredded or diced vegetables along with spices. The preparation would normally involve frying mustard seeds, urad dal, onions and then the main vegetable, and finally adding turmeric, various spices, dried red chillis and coriander. In Tamil Nadu, shredded coconut would be added as a dressing.

Poṟiyal serves as a side dish to a three-course meal of rice with sambhar, rasam and yogurt (curds in Indian English).

All poṟiyals by default have some vegetables and lentils, but many variations of the main vegetable exist:

  • Potato poṟiyal: made of Potatoes.
  • Bean poṟiyal: made out of Green or String Beans.

Many other regional variations exist. Palya, a very common dish in the South Indian state of Karnataka is very similar to the poṟiyal. Some variations of the palya involve use of chana dal instead of urad dal. Porutu in Andhra region is prepared in almost same manner, but the name has become alternate to Guddu porutu, egg poṟiyal.


The word poriyal refers to the cooking or preparation process involved in preparing the dish. The verb pori refers to stir frying, i.e, cooking in hot wok with a small amount of hot oil. The word Pori as a noun refers to puffed rice or popcorn, which is prepared in a similar manner.

Other Tamil words that refer to a dish based its cooking process are:

  • Aviyal - Boil
  • Kadaiyal - Grind / Mash of boiled lentils with water
  • Masiyal - Mash of boiled roots and leafy greens
  • Thuvaiyal - Coarse Mash of stirfried vegetables
  • Varuval - Deep Fry
  • Vathakkal - Shallow Fry
  • Vatral - Drying (in the Sun)

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