An Indian vegetable stew made with lentils and vegetables in a tamarind broth. Served over rice.
I had a jar of Sambar masala in my spice cabinet so I decided to make sambar for dinner. I found a recipe at ShowMeTheCurry, a great cooking channel on YouTube where I've learned how to cook many Indian dishes, and tweaked it to what I had. The results were delicious.
1 cup (dry) Toor Dal or lentils
4 cups water
2 Tbsp oil
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/8 tsp fenugreek seeds
10-12 dried curry leaves (crumbled)
1 large onion, diced
1 large tomato, diced
2 cups cauliflower florets
1-2 Tbsp tamarind concentrate
1/4 tsp turmeric
1 Tbsp sambar masala
1 Tbsp coriander
red chili powder to taste
Cook the lentils in 4 cups of water with salt and a pinch of turmeric. Do not drain, then set aside.
In a large skillet, over medium high heat, heat the oil. Add the cumin and fenugreek seeds until they sputter. Add the crumbled curry leaves and give it a quick stir then add the onion.
Cook the onion, stirring, until it becomes soft and translucent. Then add the tomatoes and cook for another minute. Add the cauliflower and about 1/4 cup of water.
Cover the pan and allow cauliflower to steam for about 5 minutes or until softened.
Using a large spoon mash some of the lentils against the side of the pan then pour lentils and remaining cooking water into the vegetable mixture.
Add the tamarind concentrate, sambar masala, coriander, turmeric, and chili powder to taste (I made it as spicy as I could handle it and then had my husband add more red chili to his serving). Add salt to taste, stir, and lower the heat. You can add more water if you would like it soupier. I added about 4 oz of diced pork loin (that was leftover from an earlier dinner) but this is optional. Let simmer for a few minutes then serve.
Serve over rice, garnished with cilantro, and naan bread on the side. Makes 2-3 servings. Enjoy.
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