Friday, March 26, 2010

Recipe: Nana's Sambhar Powder

This is my grandma's recipe. I actually haven't been able to cook any of her recipes since she passed away last year. I just feel incredibly sad and tears still roll down my cheeks when I remember her. I actually haven't cooked any Manglorean dishes as such, since she passed away. Its still too painful to refer to the notes I made when watching her cook. Food and cooking are so tied up with her and her memories.

So I've been using powders from my favorite flour mill back home which I carry with me after each trip home.

But this is Nana's recipe.

7 kumti mirsang (long red chillies - crinkled) or 2.5 tbsps chilli powder
1 dessert spoon dhaniya (corriander) seeds or powder
1 tsp jeera (cumin) seeds or powder
1/2 tsp methi (fenugreek) seeds or powder
small piece turmeric or 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp mustard seeds or powder
1 sprig curry leaves or powder

Sambhar powder will taste best if you use the fresh seeds and powder them, but knowing how sometimes one doesnt have the time to powder everything fresh, she also gave me the substitutes.

The quantities are minute because she would prepare fresh powder each time before she cooked the dish. You can increase the quantities if you like. Because the ingredients are fried in oil, it may not last too long outside, better to keep it in the fridge if leftover.

Fry all ingredients in a little oil (just enough to provide a little lubrication) for 10-15 minutes till it lets out an  aroma
(if using powders put them in just before turning off the heat otherwise they will burn)

Powder in a mixi or coffee grinder

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