June 25, 2007 at 2:09 pm 10 comments

Pithla is the perennial ‘comfort food’ for most Maharashtrians. Piping hot Pithla coupled with Bhakri or Rice or Roti is like a reward after a long day at work.

This humble dish requires only a handful of simple ingredients and can be churned out within minutes. It’s a handy recipe when you are either out of stock for veggies or guests visit you unannounced or when you long for your Mom’s food!

Like every recipe Pithla has many variations. What I make is the spicy version with lots of onion, garlic and green chillies.

Depending on whether you want to serve Pithla with Rice or Bhakri/Roti, the consistency also varies. Pithla served with rice has almost watery- liquid like consistency. Semi liquid or dry Pithla goes well with Bhakri or Roti. This dry version of Pithla is alternately known as Zunka.

_________________________________________________________                                                            Pithla recipe


1 cup Besan/Chick pea flour/gram flour

2 onions chopped

4-5 green chillies chopped

4-5 garlic pods peeled

1” piece dried coconut (Khopra)

½ tsp Cumene seeds

½ tsp mustard seeds

¼ tsp turmeric powder

2 tsp oil

~ 2-3 cups water

Chopped coriander leaves for garnishing

Salt as per taste 


Pithla Ingredients – Coarsely ground chutney(Green chillies+garlic+cumene seeds+coconut) ,onion, Besan(chickpea flour) and granite mortar pestle for pounding

In a mortar and pestle pound (or coarsely grind in a mixie) together chopped Green chillies, garlic pods, dried coconut piece and cumene seeds. 

Heat oil in wok/kadai.

Add the mustard seeds and once they splutter add the coarsely ground chutney(Chilli-garlic).

Add the chopped onions and fry till they become translucent.

Add 2-3 cups of water and bring it to a nice rolling boil.

Add salt (at this stage, you can check the salt proportion by tasting the liquid)

Slowly add the Besan with your left hand, constantly stirring with a spoon in your right hand.

Adjust the besan proportion to the required consistency.Remember that after the Pithla cools, it becomes thicker. So keep it a little liquidish (that is actually a word in my vocabularyJ) if you want to serve it with rice.

Boil nicely for a few minutes more.

Garnish with fresh coriander leaves and serve piping hot with Bhakri/Roti/Rice.


Pithla served with Roti, Green chilli and onion

Pithla, Bhakri and Thecha served with Green chillies and Raw onion make a fabulous combination.

Don’t cut the onion. Take a small onion (preferably white onion).Break it with the base of your palm. Remove the cover and eat it…this tastes much better than the cut onion J 

This assal(meaning- hardcore) Marathi Pithla goes for RCI-Maharashtrain Cuisine hosted by- the versatile and very popular, Nupur of One Hot Stove.


Entry filed under: bean, besan, chickpea, coconut, coriander leaves, Curries & Gravies, flour, garlic, gram flour, green chilli, legume, mustard seed, onion, salt, seed, turmeric, water.

Friday Monsoon Magic-Chaats revisited Weekend Breakfast Blogging (WBB#13)-July

10 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Nupur  |  June 25, 2007 at 5:32 pm

    That is such a beautiful presentation: a humble and delicious meal! “reward” is such an apt term: I feel truly lucky when I get to eat some garam-garam pithle-bhaat.
    @ 🙂 Thanks Nupur

  • 2. Sakshi  |  June 25, 2007 at 7:14 pm

    Awesome! I am so missing this 😦

  • 3. bee  |  June 25, 2007 at 8:34 pm

    madhuli, which region of maharashtra is this pithla from? i believe there are regional variations to this?
    @ Bee not only regional variations ,there are variations from household to household 🙂 This spicy Pithla has an influence of the Khandeshi food (from Khandesh- Dhule, Jalgagoan etc.), which is known for its spicy food. I have learnt it from my mom -of course

  • 4. Rahin  |  June 27, 2007 at 7:10 pm

    hi madhuli , pithle bhakri (with some home made ghee)….nothing more comforting than tht… cant wait to try it

  • 5. Dhana  |  June 28, 2007 at 8:43 pm

    Craving for some Pithala Bhakri with garam kaanda bhaji sold at Sinhagadh now!
    @ And dahi in the earthen cup!!!hmmm you made me nostalgic Dhana.are you from Pune??

  • 6. Punjabi Kadhi Pakode-wali « A Mad Tea Party  |  July 11, 2007 at 11:43 pm

    […] consistency of Punjabi kadhi is between the Maharashtrian kadhi and pithla (here and here), and the reason for some early disdain in my Maharashtrian family (the Kashmiris, with […]

  • 7. Zunka « My Foodcourt  |  August 2, 2007 at 12:13 pm

    […] Zunka-I have earlier posted about Pithla. Zunka is a drier version of this Pithla with or without vegetables. I have added Fresh green fenugreek (Methi) leaves and onion to this […]

  • 8. SilverOak Farm « My Foodcourt  |  August 26, 2007 at 5:06 pm

    […] air with the drizzling monsoon and some spicy Maharashtrian Food (typical rural specialties like Pithla, Bhakri, Thecha etc..) – can it get any […]

  • 9. Rachana  |  August 4, 2008 at 8:30 am

    Hi, thanks a lot for the recipe. I followed your recipe and outcome was close to pithla I had had and loved in Pratapgarh few years back.

  • […] favourite dish is Pithla; bright yellow, coloured by turmeric and chickpea flour and cooked to the consistency of smooth […]


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June 2007




Find my recipes at The Urban Spice


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