Lot of my friends go-Do you make lot of curries at home?Quickly followed by-Can you make butter chicken? I just go-No. Big No to both questions.That’s because I have South Indian heritage 🙂 Sanju grew up in North India-although being South Indian-He loves having roti and curry/dal. On the contrary, I liked to stick with mild non-spicy meals 😛 Sambar is amazing. Growing up, I used to find sambar spicy. So would mix dahl and rice and use sambar as accompaniment. But now, living with my adorable ‘can-eat-chili-by-itself’ husband, my taste buds are getting used to Sambar. Learn’t to make perfect Sambar before I got married. Probably one of the best gifts ever for Sanju till date.
- Split yellow lentils/Tuar dal-1/4 cup cooked until mushy
- Turmeric-1 tsp
- Butternut Pumpkin-1/4 -chopped into pieces-[I load sambar with veges-my mum disagrees with that]
- Tamarind pulp-[Not paste]-tightly packed in 3 tbsp
- Sambar Masala[You can get a pack from Indian Grocery]-1 Tbsp
- Shallots-a handful-chopped/
- Mustard seeds-1 tsp
- Dry Red Chili-2
- Curry leaves-a sprig
- Asafoetida-1 pinch
- Fenugreek seeds-1 tsp
- Coconut oil-1 Tbsp
- Warm 1 cup of water and add it to tamarind-let it soak for 15 mins. Time to get your hands in and squeeze the soaked tamarind-the water would go brown-that’s what you want. My mum calls this 1st extract. Add 1/4th cup of water again to the pulp, massage and extract the 2nd one. One more time (1/4th of water onto the pulp)-3rd extract is ready. The water gets less brown every time.
- In a stockpot, heat coconut oil, mustard seeds, let it pop, add asafoetida, curry leaves, fenugreek seeds, dry chili, all at once, after couple of seconds, add shallots in
- Once they go translucent, add pumpkin in, saute for couple of minutes.
- Add a heaped Tbsp of Sambar Masala and mix them all well.
- Then add 3 extracts in, salt, turmeric, 1/2 cup water and let it boil.
- After 12 mins-it would be all done. Add cooked lentils and let it simmer for 2 mins.
- Serve with plain rice and probably a Channa Spinach sundal as an accompaniment