Kokum- The souring agent of Goa

Kokum is one of the star ingredients in Goa after coconuts. It has a distinctive sour flavour with a hint of sweet and is used in many dishes of this beautiful state. It is available in markets fresh or sundried.

Goans love sipping from a glass filled with cold kokum juice or using kokum to add a sour note to their food. It can be used in pickles and gravies. The local markets of Goa will have fresh Kokum during the summer. If you’re not here for the summer, you can always go for dried kokum.


Health benefits

–         Can boost intestine health

–         Decreases appetite and can help in weight loss

–         Decreases inflammation

–         Has cooling properties

–         Boosts heart health

–         Good for digestion

–         And more…


Dishes that use Kokum:-

Sol Kadhi

This tangy drink is popular in Goa. It is usually drunk during lunch/dinner or mixed with rice.


10 dried Kokum

1 cup grated coconut

1½ cloves garlic

1½ green chilli (chopped)

¼ inch ginger piece (chopped)

Salt to taste

Coriander leaves



Put Kokum in warm water and keep aside for 30-40 minutes.

Then squeeze the kokum juice out. Discard the pulp.

Blend the coconut, ginger, garlic, and chillies together with a little water. Squeeze the paste till the milk comes out and keep aside.

Blend the paste again with ½ cup water, squeeze out the milk and add it to the previously extracted milk. Try to get out as much milk as you can by blending the paste with water and squeezing it at least 2 times more.

Add the kokum juice to the extracted coconut milk. Leave aside for 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Put coriander leaves on top and enjoy at room temperature or chilled.


Goan Khatkhate

Khatkhate is a mixed vegetable stew.      


½ cup toor dal (yellow pigeon peas)

3 drumsticks (cut into 2-inch pieces)

1 carrot (cut into pieces)

1 tsp cumin seeds

8 curry leaves

1 tsp coriander powder

½ tsp turmeric powder

1 tbsp jaggery

8 teppal berries/ triphal berries/ Sichuan pepper (crushed)

5 dried kokum petals OR marble-sized ball of tamarind

½ cup raw banana

1 radish (cut into pieces)

4-5 dry red chillies

½ cup ridge gourd

½ cup pumpkin (chopped into pieces)

1 cup grated coconut

Salt to taste


Boil 3 cups water and put in the toor dal. Let it cook for 5 minutes.

Grind the coconut, chillies, turmeric, and jaggery with a little water.

In a little water, cook the carrot, banana, ridge gourd, radish for roughly 10 minutes. Then add the drumsticks and cook till soft.

Heat oil in a pan, put the cumin seeds and let it fry for 10 seconds. Then throw in the curry leaves. Add the coconut paste after a few seconds.

Then, add the dal.

Lastly, put in the cooked vegetables, triphal berries, coriander powder, kokum, and salt. Let it cook for a few minutes till ready.


Goan Dal


1 cup toor dal (yellow pigeonpea)

4 kokum

1 tomato (chopped)

2 dry red chillies (chopped)

2 tbsp ghee

1½ tbsp garlic (chopped)

1 green chilli (slit vertically)

¼ tsp asafetida

1 tsp mustard seeds

1 tsp cumin seeds

Salt to taste



Wash the dal and boil in a pressure cooker with 2½ cups of water (2-3 whistles).

Heat the ghee in a pan. Put in the mustard seeds and then the cumin seeds.

Put in the chillies and garlic.

Add the turmeric and asafetida.

Put the tomatoes and let it cook.

Put the pan’s contents into the dal.

Add kokum and salt.

Let the dal boil and then enjoy with rice and pickle.


Kokum Fruit
Sol Kadhi