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It is very thick, which distinguishes it from a similar curry known as pulisheri, and sourer than avial. For the same reason, the kaalan can last longer when stored.  In many preparations, more pepper and/or chillies are added to make the kaalan spicy, in addition to its signature sour taste.
Kaalan is typically served as part of the sadhya.
- Kalan preparation
- "Onam special: Here's what a traditional Onam sadhya consists of". The Indian Express. 13 September 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
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