The tadkawati is very useful in the Indian style of cooking.
It is specifically designed for seasoning dals, chutneys etc with specific ingredients. The seasoning lends a very aromatic & tasty flavour. This is done after the dish has been prepared or cooked.
The tadkawati is a small utensil, usually made of iron, aluminium or hard anodised aluminium. It basically has a small cup shaped vessel attached to a handle. It is small in size as the specific ingredients that are put in are small in quantity, & when they fry together in oil in such a small area all the flavours get infused well.
The handle is an essential element in the tadkawati, as it helps to transfer the hot tadka immediately or ‘throw in’ the hot tadka into the main dish, the minute all the ingredients are fried or roasted to perfection with ease & without burning hands. Also the handle is long for the same purpose & it also helps in hanging it from the kitchen rack while not in use.
Seasoning is known as in Popu in Telugu, Vagrene in kannada & Tadka in the North Indian states. It rescues the dals and the curries from ‘blandness’. The technique is simple, but it saves and uplifts them to spicy state. Almost all types of curries, chutneys, lentil preparations like dals, sambhars and rasams are enhanced by the addition of the seasoning at the start or just before serving.
The most common ingredients of tadka are
1. Dried red chilli pieces
3. Curry leaves
4. Chana dal
5. Urad dal
6. Mixture of Mustard seeds and Cumin.