½ cup mung dal or toor dal
2 tbsp Sambar powder
1 medium sized potato, skinned and cubed
2 drumsticks – halved lengthwise and cut into 2″ long pieces
6 okras, quartered lengthwise and cut into 2″ long pieces
1 large carrot, quartered lengthwise and cut into 2″ long pieces
10 small onions, skinned and halved
2 small tomatoes, quartered.
tamarind marble size
Salt to taste
1 tbsp oil
1/4 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds
3 dried red chilies
A few curry leaves
Wash the dal and drain the water, transfer to a pressure cooker, add 2 cups of water and cook for 5 whistle. Once the pressure cooker cools down, open the cooker and mash the dal.
Boil 2 cups of water in a large pan and boil the vegetables except tomatoes and onions and cook until all the vegetables are softened, but not cooked to a mush. Pour the cooked dal along with its liquid to this pan. Add tamarind extract and bring it to a boil and let it simmer on low heat.
Place a small frying pan, add the oil to this pan and when it starts to heat up, add the mustard and fenugreek seeds. When it start to splutter, add the dried red chillies, curry leaves and the onions . Saute till onions start to soften. Reduce the heat and add the Sambar powder and saute for 2 minutes on low heat, making sure that the spices are not burned. Add the tomatoes and saute for 2 more minutes. Add 1 cup of water into this pan and bring to a boil. Pour this into the saucepan with the vegetables. Add salt to taste and mix well. If the Sambar looks too thick at this point, add some more water.
Bring this to a boil, then cover and reduce the heat to medium low and let it simmer for 15 minutes. Serve hot. Sambar goes well with rice, idly and dosas.
Preparation of sambar powder
1tsp gram dal, 2 tsp coriander seeds, 4 red chilles, 1/2 tsp mustard seeds, 1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds.
In a pan roast dal,coriander and red chillies with oil and roast mustard and fenugreek seeds without oil. Grind all the roasted ingredients as fine powder.