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How To Make Buttermilk Sambar

*** I am following Meenakshi Ammal’s recipes, however I’m using shortcuts like the cooker, etc. and adding some of my own twist to the recipes. What you see here are my recipes inspired by M. Ammal’s and in no way is Ms. Ammal responsible for its outcome should you choose to try it. Though she was responsible for the brilliant outcome of my dish, so, a big thank you Ms. Ammal for writing Samaithu Par.***

On Pongal day I was looking to make a nice simple traditional meal that wasn’t the usual sambar rice. Flipping pages I noticed the recipe of buttermilk sambar. As I glanced though it I thought it would be a more kuzhambu, but it wasn’t. It did seem like a sambar recipe, so decided to try it. It surprised me by tasting really good; when you think buttermilk sambar, you don’t think it’d be this tasty. (Sorry about the picture, I forgot to click before eating and that’s what the leftovers looked like 😀 )

Buttermilk Sambar

Ingredients –
(Serves 4)
3/4th cup red gram dhal
1 cup sour buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon mustard
1/4 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
4-6 red chillies pinched into two (based in spiciness)
4 green chillies
1/2 inch piece ginger or 1/2 teaspoon ginger paste
few curry leaves
some coriander leaves
gingelly oil 3 teaspoons
salt to taste
3 medium size potatoes for seasonings*

*seasonings – I used potato but you could also use drumstick, brinjal, lady’s finger, chow chow and ash-gourds. Most other vegetables don’t go well with curd/buttermilk. Make sure to either boil or fry the vegetables before you add them to the sambar.

Method –

1. Boil the dhal in a cooker with a pinch of salt until it’s very soft. You can boil the potatoes along with the dhal.

2. Heat oil in a vessel. When the oil is hot add mustard, fenugreek, red chillies and green chillies. Add ginger and curry leaves when mustard starts to splutter and green chillies are scalded.

3. Sort the curry leaves quickly and add the buttermilk.

4. Add the seasonings. If you are using potatoes though, don’t add them just yet.

5. Drain the water from the dhal and add it to the buttermilk in the vessel. Mash the cooked dhal partially.

6. When the buttermilk boils add the dhal mash and salt to taste, mix well and let it come to a boil again while occasionally stirring.

7. Let it boil for a couple of moments, then remove from fire.

8. Chop some coriander and keep aside for garnishing.

9. Peel boiled potatoes and chop into medium sized cubes. You can also cut them smaller or larger based on what you prefer.

10. Deep fry the potatoes until they are golden brown. Crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. Keep aside.

11. Garnish the buttermilk sambar with potatoes and coriander before serving.

Have you made buttermilk sambar before? Have a different recipe or any tips for me?

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