Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Sambhar( Tur dal cooked with vegetables and spices)

Sambhar is broth of Tur (Arhar) dal with vegetables and special masala called Sambhar masala. Sambhar is taken with rice, idli, Dosa, Uttapa, Appam etc. When I was doing my Ph.D. in Jaipur, I used to go to a hotel 10km. away from my hostel just to eat idli-Sambhar. After my marriage I came to Pune and had a very good lady as a neighbor who taught me the how to cook South Indian food. So now I make Dosa, Idli, and Sambhar to my heart content and enjoy with my family.

Preparation Time: 10 min.
Cooking Time: 30min.
Servings: 10 large servings
Ingredients Required for Making Sambhar:
  • 100 gm. Tur dal (Arhar dal)
  • 10 gm. French beans (5-6 beans)
  • 1 Small Carrot
  • 1 Small onion
  • 2-3 cloves of Garlic
  • 2 cm. Piece of Ginger
  • 1/2teaspoon Mustard seeds
  • 1/2teaspoon Cumin seeds
  • 4-5 Kadi patta ( curry leaves)
  • 1/2 Tea spoon Turmeric powder
  • 10-15 gm. (1 table spoon approximately) Sambhar powder
  • 10-20gm. Tamarind
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 Tea spoon cooking oil
  • 300 ml water
For seasoning of Sambhar:
  • 2 Whole Red chilies
  • 1/2 Tea spoon Cumin seeds
  • 1/2 Tea spoon Mustard seeds
  • 3-4 Kadi patta ( curry leaves)
  • 1 small Pinch of Hing (asafetida)
  • 1 Tea spoon Ghee (clarified butter)
Directions for Preparing Sambhar:
  • Wash Tur dal and put it in a cooker along with salt and turmeric powder and 300 ml water.
  • Keep the cooker with dal on gas on high flame.
  • When the pressure builds in the cooker reduce the flame and cook for 10 min.
  • Allow the cooker to cool.
Tamarind pulp

  • Cut onion to small pieces.
  • Cut garlic to fine pieces.
  • Grate the ginger piece.
  • Wash and cut beans, carrot to 1/2 inch pieces.
Carrot and Beans  for sambhar

  • Take 1 tea spoon of cooking oil in a wok and heat it.
  • When the oil is hot add1/2 tea spoon of mustard seeds let them splutter.
  • Add 1/2 tea spoon of cumin seeds and let them splutter.
  • Add 3-4 kadi patta and when the color of kadi patta changes and the wonderful aroma comes add onions to it.
  • Cook for a min. and add cut garlic and grated ginger to it and cook for a min. and add vegetables to it.
  • Cook the vegetables with regular stirring for 2-3 min.
Vegetables being cooked for sambhar
  • Add sambhar powder to the vegetable mixture and cook for a min with stirring.
Sambhar masala added to the cooked vegetables

  • Add tamarind pulp the vegetable and sambhar powder mixture and cook for 2-3 min. 
Tamarind pulp added to the vegetables and sambhar masala
  • Add the boiled dal to the mixture in the wok and give it a good stir to mix the dal and spices nicely.
Boiled dal added to the mixture of vegetables and spices

Boiled dal mixed to the vegetable and spices mixture
  • Add a tea spoon of sugar or one inch piece of jaggery to give sweet tangy spicy taste to the sambhar.
  • Give a nice boil to the sambhar.
  • If you fell that the sambhar is thick then add water according to your requirement.

  • Take out sambhar in a serving bowl.
Sambhar before seasoning
Seasoning of Sambhar:
  • Take 1 teaspoon ghee in a small pan and heat it.
  • When hot add 1/2 tea spoon mustard seeds, 1/2teaspoon cumin seeds and let them splutter.
  • Add whole red chilies, and kadi patta.
  • Cook for 1/2min.
  • Add asafetida and immediately pour the seasoning mixture on the sambhar and cover the serving bowl to allow the aroma of spices to seep in the sambhar.
Hot spicy, Tangy sambhar with a hint of sweet taste is ready to be taken with idli (,Dosa (,Vada, Uttapa, rice etc.
  • Those who do not take onion and garlic may avoid it.
  • Make sure the Dal is boiled to complete softness.
  • The effect of seasoning comes best with ghee so try not to replace it with cooking oil.
  • If you want to avoid cooking oil and save on time then add vegetables, tamarind pulp, and sambhar powder to the dal while boiling only.

Suggested Variations:
  • Instead of beans any other vegetables of your choice can be taken.
  • If drum sticks / Radish/sambhar onions( small special onions which are used for pickle with vinegar) are taken for sambhar then no other vegetable is required as they leave their distinct taste and flavor.
  • For garnishing freshly grated coconut is very good instead of often used coriander leaves.
  • Sambhar for idli and Vada should be slightly on the thinner side where as for dosa, rice on the thicker side.
  • In the absence of tamarind dry mango powder / Tomatoes can be taken though the authentic taste is not there.

1 comment:

  1. Making Sambhar this way really enhances its experience!!!! We really love this recipe!!!!



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