Sambar is a healthy vegan vegetable soup, flavored with aromatic spices and tamarind. It has a wonderful appearance from the colorful vegetables and a great taste. We have slightly altered the original recipe here to make it simple, quick and healthier. Lets look what are the things to take care of while preparing this.
- It is not a traditional sambar as no hing is used in it. Hing is not available in its pure form but comes mixed with other things which may not be healthy to take regularly. If you find good hing then add a small piece into the curry to get that wonderful taste and smell of the traditional sambar.
- Organic vegetables are used in the curry. Moong dal is used to give thickness to the soup and also it adds a wonderful taste to it. So this is a vegetable-lentil soup.
- Drum stick and its leaves are seasonal vegetables, healthy when taken in its growing seasons.
- Leaves are to be used fresh, avoid using tired, old and dried leaves. So only fresh curry leaves are used in dishes.
- Non-iodised sea salt or rock salt is preferred over iodised salt. Here rock salt is used.
- Chilli, coriander and turmeric are washed, cleaned and powdered at home. We can also buy them from trusted sources to avoid eating unhealthy things that might come with the store bought packs.
- Onion: 1 medium size
- Carrot: 1, medium size
- Beetroot: 1 small
- Potato: 2 medium size
- Green beans: a few
- Drum sticks: 1
- Tomato: 1 large
- Cucumber: a small piece
- Ladies finger: 4
- Moong dal: 100 gm
- Red chilli powder: 1/2 tea spoon
- Turmeric powder: 1/2 tea spoon
- Coriander powder: 1 tea spoon
- Curry leaf
- Salt to taste
- Mustard seeds for seasoning
- Coconut oil: 1 spoon
- Tamarind: a small lemon size (optional)
Clean the vegetables and cut them into cubes. Keep tomato and ladies finger pieces separate, we will add them when other vegetables are almost cooked because they need only short to time to cook. (If added in the beginning the soft vegetables get mashed into the curry). Wash moong dal and add it to the vegetables. Add turmeric powder, coriander powder, chilli powder (if whole red chilli is taken, just break them into two and add into the curry. If you want mild curry, remove seeds from the chillies) and salt to this mix and cook till vegetables are soft. When the vegetables are almost cooked add tomato and ladies finger pieces. Take care not to over cook the vegetables. Tomato and cucumber adds enough sourness to this mix but if it is not good enough we can add tamarind juice (Soak tamarind in warm water and squeeze the juice out of it). Heat oil in a pan and splutter mustard seeds. Add this mix into the cooked vegetable, together with curry leaves. This sambar goes well with rice, dosa, chapati, puttu and even bread.