Thursday, July 24, 2008

Indian Lentil Stew / Sambar / Kolmbo / Kolumbo

Sambar or Kolmbo (as it is called in Konkani) is one of the traditional Konkani recipies. It can also be had a soup or with idli or dosa.

2 ripe tomatoes
2 tablespoon
sambar powder or Kolmbo pitti
2 cups toor or arhar
dal or pigeon peas
1/2 cup tamarind juice prepared by soaking tamarind or 1 teaspoon tamarind concentrate
1 onion or 1 cup chopped madras onions or shallots (see here.)
1 potato
2 cups vegetables (you can add any of these vegetables as per your preference or availability- eggplant (brinjal), drumstick, cauliflower, ivy gourd (tendli), carrot, beans, pumpkin (squash), ash gourd)
1 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
salt for taste
chili powder if needed
3 table spoon cilantro or coriander leaves
10-12 curry leaves
2 tablespoon oil


Cut all the vegetables into approximately equal size. Boil or pressure cook all the vegetables and potato till soft. Don't overcook the vegetables. Pressure cook the toor dal. Beat the dal with a hand beater till smooth. Chop tomato into small pieces. Cook tomato with sambar powder and tamarind paste/juice till the tomato is soft.
In another pan fry onion in 1 teaspoon oil till transparent. We fry it so that the onion loses its raw smell. The onion helps to give a sweetish taste to the sambar. Add the vegetables, dal, fried onion and tomato mixture into a large pot. Add water as per desired consistency. Add salt and chili powder as per taste. Cook on a low flame for around 20 minutes and get it to a boil.
In a seasoning pan, add mustard seeds and 1/2 teaspoon oil. When the mustard seeds splutter add curry leaves and add this to the sambar. Mix well and remove from heat. Keep covered for another 5 minutes till the flavor of the seasoning blends well with the sambar. Garnish with cilantro. Serve hot with rice, dosa or idli.

Preparation time: 45 minutes
Serves: 4-5

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