Ulunthankali/ Ulundhu kali ( Urad dal Kali)

Ulunthakali is a rustic, traditional dish prepared in Tamilnadu specially for girls when they attend puberty. Not only for girls, it is good for all kids and women as it has enormous health benefits.

Most of us would have had it when we were small and our parents too. It is our responsibility to pass this dish to our next generation. So I wanted to write this recipe so that most of us can make it at home.

This ulunthakali is completely healthy!! It helps to strengthen uterus for girls. It is very good for bones and to strengthen the hips. In our place, when a girl attends puberty, this kali is given once in morning for 30 days continously and after delivery.

Not only for girls, it is very good for everyone as it improves digestion, protects heart, boosts energy, improves bone health, strengthens nervous system, good for skin and hair etc..,

Black urad dal ( both whole and split one) is the main ingredient of this kali. If you do not have black urad dal, use the white one. Palm jaggery is used to give sweetness as it is very healthy. If you couldn’t get it, use normal jaggery.

Rice flour is used just to give thickness. You can always skip it if you do not prefer to add it. Ulunthakali is made with sesame oil and sesame oil is noted for it’s rich health benefits.

In other words to explain this kali, it is a total health-pack for the whole family to begin the day with!! Make this at home atleast once a week to get the full benefit from it.

To check the recipe video, click the link below:

Let us check the recipe with detailed step-by-step pictures❤


1 tbsp= 15 ml.

1 cup= 200 ml.

  • Split black urad dal- 4 tbsp
  • Rice flour- 1 tbsp
  • Palm Jaggery- 1/3rd cup
  • Sesame oil- 50 ml.
  • Cardamom powder- generous pinch ( optional)


To make palm jaggery syrup, just melt 3 tbsp of palm jaggery in water by heating it. Make it to 1/3rd cup. Sieve it before using.

Dry roast black urad dal in medium flame till rich aroma comes from it and it slightly turns brown. Slight color change is fine. It might take approximately 5 minutes. No need to roast much.
Roasted to slight brown.
Let it cool completely.

Move it to a mixer jar. Grind to a fine powder.
Urad dal grinded to fine powder.
Now roast 1 tbsp of rice flour slightly. This step is not required as it is a store-bought flour. You can do if you wish to or skip it. If using raw rice, roast it well till it puffs in kadai. Let it cool and grind to a fine powder.
Now sieve the powdered urad dal to a bowl.

Next sieve the rice flour.

Add the melted palm jaggery now.
Add 1 cup of water or as required.
Mix everything together so that lumps are not formed. Mix either with spoon or whisk. Mixing with hand works best here.
Mixed well so that lumps are not there. This is very important.
Now heat an iron kadai in medium flame. Heavy bottomed iron kadai works good. Pour the prepared mixture to it.
Keep the flame in low to medium and start stirring it. Stirring it continuous without stopping is much important. This prevents the formation of lumps. So stir continuously without stopping.

Stir continously. It will start to thicken.
Lumps won’t be there if you are stirring continously.
Once it thickens a bit, keep the flame in low and start to add oil little by little. I added oil in 4 parts. This is the first part of adding oil. Add oil and stir continuously.
Add the cardamom powder now. This is optional. Not used in traditional way of making.
Add the second part of oil and keep on stirring. Flame is in low.
Keep stirring. It will start to separate from the edges.
Add the third part of oil in low flame. Scrape the edges of the kadai and keep stirring.
Keep stirring. Flame is in low. You can see it is separated from the edges.
It will roll.
Add the fourth part of oil.
It will roll like a ball and get separated completely from the edges.
If you touch the ulunthankali with your finger now, it will not stick to your finger. This is the perfect consistency. If you pinch a small portion from the kali and roll it in your hand, it will roll like a ball. I have shown it in my other picture below. Switch off the flame now.

See it rolls like a ball itself from the kadai to the bowl.
I divided it into two balls. See it rolls like a ball in my hand without sticking.
This is the ulunthankali I prepared the next day morning with white urad dal and jaggery. See I pinched a portion from the kali and rolled it like a ball in my hand. Perfect it is!!

Cashews are just for decoration. Hope everyone makes it at home and enjoys😊


  • Use sesame oil for rich traditional taste. You can substitute it with ghee if you would prefer.
  • Black urad dal- both split and whole is used traditionally as it is more healthy. You can also use white urad dal- both split and whole.
  • Plam jaggery is more healthy to use. If you want to increase or decrease the sweetness, you can.
  • Stirring continous without stopping is the key to make good kali. There should be no lumps.