South Indian Sambar

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South Indian Sambar

How long it takes – 1 hour

Number of servings – 10 people

Sambar is one of the staple dishes in the kitchens of the South Indians and a favourite among North Indians. People have their own way of preparing the same even though the ingredients are the same but the proportions to one another could be still different and hence the difference in taste. People in Tamil nadu do not roast the ingredients of sambar powder but they dry it in the sun and powder the same. We dry roast certain ingredients and fry one or two of the ingredients in oil and powder all together.  Today I would like to put up south indian sambar with the ground masala ingredients which would be really yummy and more tastier than the sambar prepared with sambar powder but of course without coconut.  Here it is:

What you need to have:

1. Toor Dal/Pigeon dal  – 1/3 cup

2. Mixed vegetables – 4-5  cups

Mixed Vegetables

What you do with what you have:

1. Wash Toor dal and soak it for 15 minutes till you cut all the veggies in the cooker adding around 2 cups of water.  Add a pinch of Turmeric powder and 1/2 Teaspoon of cooking oil as well to it. (The reason for adding cooking oil is for the dal to cook well).

2. Wash and chop all the vegetables of your choice.  The most important of them being French Beans, Radish, Potato, Brinjal Onion, Carrots, Tomato, Drumstick. (Drumstick to be cooked directly in a different vessel and mixed subsequently).

3. Place the cooker with dal and the chopped veggies from step-2 on medium flame and cook it till done for about 25-30 minutes adding a little salt so that it is no over cooked.

Cooked Veggies with Toor Dal

Ingredients of Wet Masala:

1. Chickpeas dal – 2 Teaspoons

2. Blackgram dal  – 1 Teaspoon

3. Coriander seeeds – 4 Teaspoons

4. Cumin seeds – 1/2 Teaspoons

5. Fenugreek seeds – 10 grains

6. Mustard seeds – 1/3 Teaspoon

7. Pepper  corns – 5-6

8. Asafoetida (soft) – Size of a peanut

9. Turmeric powder – 1/2 Teaspoon

10. Bilimbi or Tamarind –  4 or a small piece of it.

11. Red chilly – 5-6 (Byadgi/Kashmiri)

Ingredients of Wet Masala

4. Place a spatula with 4 teaspoons of cooking oil in it on medium flame.  On being heated add Bengalgram dal, Blackgram dal and fry for a while.  When done, add Coriander seeds, Cumin seeds, Fenugreek seeds, Asafoetida, Pepper, Mustard seeds at once and stir into it.  Finally add Red chillies and Turmeric powder and turn off the flame. On cooling, grind it in the mixer adding either Bilimbi or Tamarind and water in steps to a medium thick consistency.

Fried Ingredients of Wet Masala

Ground Wet Masala

5. Transfer cooked veggies from the cooker to a broad based bowl and add the ground wet masala from step-4 to it.  Add required quantity of water to bring it to the required consistency and check for salt stiring consistently. Finally add chopped coriander leaves .

Ground wet Masala added to cooked veggies

Ready to serve Sambar

6. Place a spatula with 2 teaspoons of cooking oil on medium flame.  When hot, add mustard seeds to it.  When it splutters add red chilli pieces and a pinch of Asafoetida powder and finally curry leaves to it.  Switch off the flame and season it to the dish. Enjoy with papad and rice, Yummmmmmmmmmmmm!

Ready to serve Sambar.

How long it takes – 1 hour

Number of servings – 10 people

Good to remember:

1. Use quality Toor dal for best flavour and colour.

2. Veggies of your choice can be used.  But for Drumstick, cook it in a seperate bowl to avoid it from getting over cooked.

3. Tamarind pulp/dry  can be used instead of Bilimbi.

4. Adjust the ingredients as per the required quantity.

5. Chilly should be adjusted  as per one’s palate.