Arachuvitta sambar is a staple item in many brahmin households. Served with rice, this sambar is nutritious with the goodness of veggies and dhal, flavored with freshly ground spices and coconut. A serving of rice, ghee and hot sambar with some roasted potatoes is my kind of a perfect lunch. I have served this sambar here with some brown rice, cabbage curry and spicy vadu mangai (mango pickle). You can make this sambar with all sorts of veggies like pumpkin, small onions, drumstick, brinjal, ladies finger, bell peppers or a combination of these. I have made this with white pumpkin today.
- 2 cups vegetables of your choice ( I have used white pumpkin/ vellai pooshnikai here)
- Large lemon sized tamarind
- 1/2 to 3/4 cup cooked mashed toor dal
- 1 sprig curry leaves
- 1 tbsp oil of your choice
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp urad dal
- 1/2 tsp asafoetida
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds
- salt to taste
- a big pinch of jaggery (optional)
For the freshly ground spice paste
- 6-7 red chillies
- 11/2 tbsp coriander seeds
- 11/2 tbsp chana dal
- 1/2 tsp toor dal
- 3-4 tbsp grated coconut
Soak the tamarind in hot water and extract tamarind juice.
In a pan, add very little oil and add the ingredients for the spice paste (except coconut) and roast them until the dals turn golden brown. Take care not to burn them. Add the coconut towards the end and saute for a minute and switch off the flame. Grind the above mixture with little water.
In a deep pan, add 1 tbsp oil and when it gets hot, add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, urad dal, curry leaves, asafoetida and turmeric powder. Let the mustard seeds splutter.
Now add the chopped pumpkin (or any veggies of your choice) little water and cook them until they are half done.
Add the tamarind extract to the veggies and let it boil until the raw smell of tamarind is gone.
Add the freshly ground spices, salt, jaggery and mix well. Let it cook for a couple of minutes and add the cooked toor dal. If you find the mixture to be too thick add some water as needed. If its too watery you can adjust the consistency by adding more cooked toor dal. Boil the mixture for one minute and switch off the stove.
Serve hot with rice, poriyal and papad 🙂