Sambar is an essential part of South Indian meal. There are so many varieties of sambar. Either they differ by vegetables or by the dhal used. I wanted my daughter to have a good portion of greens in her diet. Though I don't usually add greens in sambar, I added methi leaves/ Vendhaya keerai in sambar and waited for the result. The bitterness of methi leaves was not at all there and my daughter thought it was coriander leaves. So I didn't tell her the truth and she loved the sambar. But things would have gone different if I told her about the keerai I used. It is better to remain silent at some places...
Toor Dahal/ Thuvaram Paruppu-1/2 cup
Turmeric Powder-1/4 tsp
Sesame Oil-1/2 tbs
Vendhaya Keerai/ Methi Leaves-2 cups (finely Chopped)
Tamarind-a small lemon sized ball
Sambar Powder-2 tsp
Coriander Leaves-For Garnish
Mustard-Urad Dhal-1 tsp
Methi Seeds-1/4 tsp
Curry Leaves-2 sprigs
1. In a pressure cooker add washed dhal along with chopped tomato, turmeric powder sesame oil and 3 cups of water.
2. Cover and put it on flame. When steam starts coming, put on the weight and wait for a whistle.
3. When the first whistle blows, switch flame to low and cook for 10 minutes.
4. Remove from flame and let the pressure drop by itself.
5. Open the cooker and add the pearl onions, methi leaves, juice extracted form the tamarind, sambar powder and salt.
6. Pressure cook for another 2 minutes.
7. Transfer sambar to a serving bowl.
Heat oil and add the tempering ingredients to it. When they crackle add it to sambar and garnish with coriander leaves.
8. Serve it with rice or dosa or idlis.