Classic Seasoned Sambar, Method Three | S. Meenakshi Ammal


It has been an amazing Mahasivaratri Festival time, strong energies, a little overwhelming and not surprisingly some are feeling a little emotional. There are always transformative energies on this night of nights, and it can manifest in a whole spectrum of ways. Feel like change is coming? Lol, that is Sivaratri for you.

Meanwhile, I have picked up Pema Chodron’s The Wisdom of No Escape and have loved reading and contemplating it. It comprises teachings that she gave during a week long silent meditation camp to the attendees. Simple and understandable, she gives a wonderful new way of looking at self discovery, self awareness, growth, mindfulness and most of all, Joy. Really, I recommend it to anyone interested in self awareness. Pema is a Buddhist Nun with the gift of explaining teachings in such a simple and meaningful way.

Onwards with Sambar

Onwards with Meenakshi Ammal’s methods of cooking Sambar, and my “meditation” on Sambar. The difference in this method is that  a paste of chillies, coriander and channa dal is made, instead of using dry spices.

Onion Sambar II

Seasoned Sambar Method THREE a la S. Meenakshi Ammal

This recipe is different to Methods One and Two in that it introduces a lovely paste as a part substitute for individual spices. Before you begin, please read these posts too.

Source : inspired by Method Three, Seasoned Sambar in Cook and See Part 1, by S. Meenakshi Ammal
Cuisine: South Indian
Prep time: 15 mins or so
Cooking time: 30 mins + time of cooking the toor dal (about 1.5 hrs)
Serves: 4 people

Cook 1/2 cup of red gram dal (toor dal) into a soft mass.

Shallow fry 6 dried red chillies (I used 3), 1.5 tspns coriander seeds and 1tspn bengal gram (channa dal) in a little ghee. Grind to a paste in a spice grinder or small processor.

Take 2 – 6 more dried red chillies and saute in ghee with the mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, asafoetida, green chillies and curry leaves as described in Method One. Proceed as in Method One, including cooking the vegetables.

When you add the dal to the vegetables, add the ground paste, thinned with a little water. Boil for a few minutes, then thicken with rice flour if required.

Once off the heat, garnish with coriander leaves and curry leaves.

Note: Grated coconut can be roasted to a golden brown and added to the spice paste, but the keeping properties of the Sambar might be reduced.

Note: Always consider the heat and size of your chillies (dried for red and fresh for green) when selecting how many you will use in the recipe.


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About Ganga108

Heat in the Kitchen, Cooking with Spirit. Temple junkie, temple builder, temple cleaner. Lover of life, people, cultures, travel. Champion of growth, change and awareness. Taker of photos. Passionate about family. Happy.
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21 Responses to Classic Seasoned Sambar, Method Three | S. Meenakshi Ammal

  1. Are you fasting now? Beautiful sambar


  2. Mallika says:

    All this sambar chat is making me want to roll my sleeves up and make a pot! Looks delicious, thanks.


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