Saturday, 8 November 2008

Sambhar / Curry (South Indian Style)

This is a curry / Sambhar recipe was given to me by my mother in law. This picture is taken from sambhar prepared by her. She is an amazing cook . She has different versions of Sambhar and believe me all her versions are slurp...... She , along with father in law, came to UK about 30 years ago , a period when she didn't know cooking and to compliment her disadvantage , there were not many vegetable options and no curry powders, no indian spices but meat was in surplus. Being a strict Indian vegetarian, she had to learn to make curry powders and also suit her taste to English vegetables. Fortunately , she was successful in doing so and her experiments passed and she became a star of our family. Well this curry has Indian vegetables but there are some variations for my English readers. (courtesy mother in law)

3/4 cup toor dal cooked
1 large onions
1 large tomato
2 large potatoes cubed
1 tsp tamarind juice

For masala
lilttle oil
2 tbsp corrainder seeds
1 tsp black peppercorns
1/4 inch cinnamon
1 tsp methi / fenugreek seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tbsp channa dal
1 tbsp urad dal
1 tbsp uncooked rice
2 tbsp shredded coconut or desiccated coconut
pinch of hing / asafoetida
1 tsp turmeric
5 -6 dry red chillies
4 -5 curry leaves

Dry roast all the masala ingredients separately on low heat except methi / fenugreek seeds which has to be roasted in little oil till you can smell the aroma. Grind all of these with little water in to a smooth paste.

Cook the veggies , when its half cooked, add toor dal and ground masala, tamarind juice and salt (1 1/2 tsp ). Cover and cook till the veggies are soft and tender. Serve this with rice or idli.

Different vegetables or different combinations of vegetables can be used. Aubergines / Celery / Okra / Runner beans / Mange touts / any coloured Peppers / Baby corns / Frozen mixed vegetables except cauliflowers / Green peas. For any of these vegetables , onion and tomato are added. Green peas can be added separately or in combination with potato, beans or mange touts.

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