Kerala Sambar is different from the typical Sambars made in the other South Indian states. Kerala Sambar is made using a mixture of different vegetables whereas the other sambhar is made using a single vegetable.
The vegetables mostly added to Sambar are the following :-
* Plantain (Vazhakka)
* Yam (Chenna)
* Drum Sticks (Muringakka)
* Okra/Lady’s Finger (Vendakka)
* Sambar Cucumber (Velarikka)
* Ash Gourd (Kumbalanga)
* Ivy Gourd (Kovakka)
* Pumpkin (Mathanga)
* Brinjal (Vazhuthananga)
You can make your Sambar with whatever vegetable you can grab from the above list. Here is my recipe for making Sambar.
- Mixed Vegetables cut into medium sized pieces – 3-4 cups
(I’ve used 1 potato,1 carrot, 2 drumsticks, 1/2 plantain, 1 tomato , 5 beans and a few pieces of brinjal)
- Sambar Parippu / Tuvara Parippu (Sambar/Toor Dal) – 1/2 cup
- Sliced Onion – 1 medium
- Green chillies slit – 2
- Garlic Cloves – 4 or 5
- Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
- Tamarind – gooseberry sized ball
- Chopped coriander leaves – 2 tsp
- Red Chilly powder – 1 tsp
- Coriander Powder – 2 tsp
- Sambar Powder – 3 tsp
- Mustard Seeds – 1/2 tsp
- Red Chillies – 3
- Curry Leaves – A sprig
- Shallots or Pearl Onions (diced) – 1/4 cup
- Asafoetida (Kayam) – A pinch
- Oil – 3 tbsp
- Water – As needed
- Salt – As needed
- Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a pressure cooker and saute the sliced onions, garlic and green chillies for 2 minutes.
- Next add the diced vegetables and dal along with salt and 1/2 tsp turmeric powder and cover the pan and pressure cook on medium flame up to 2 whistles. (For pressure cooking, add enough water so as to cover the vegetables)
- Soak tamarind in 1/2 cup of warm water for sometime, squeeze and take the extract from it. Keep aside.
- When the dal and vegetables are done, remove the lid of the pressure cooker and add in the tamarind juice. Stir and simmer on low flame for some more time and add more salt if needed.
- Add chopped coriander leaves and and sprinkle asafoetida powder and simmer for 2 more minutes. Remove from flame and keep aside.
- Heat oil in a wok and allow mustard seeds to splutter.
- Add shallots, red chillies and curry leaves and fry for a minute.
- Mix in the sambar powder, coriander powder and chilly powder and fry for 2 minutes on low flame.
- Now pour the sambar to the wok and mix well for a few minutes. Remove from flame and keep aside.
It is a mixture of the following:-
Red chilly powder, Coriander Powder, Cumin powder, Turmeric powder, Fenugreek powder