Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Sambhar in a Chutney!!

Clean and Delicious Part 4 -  healthy breakfast which is clean, delicious and savoury to our Indian liking!!

Homemade is Clean and Delicious to the infinity and back. And India has a host of cuisines which gets classified under clean and delicious easily. The king of it is the south Indian veg cuisine with its scientifically baffling ingredients, which makes me proud to be an Indian. Idlies are nothing but fermented dough steamed to perfection. It is served with a sambhar which is lovingly simmered with all sorts of vegetables (necessary fibres and nutrients), strong whole spices (essential anti-oxidants and nutrients) and lentils (plant protein). The white coconut chutney adds the essential fats in the form of cold-pressed raw coconut oil that extracts itself and emulsifies with coconut fibres, thanks to the steady friction of a stone mortar and pestle. We actually give very less credit to our ancestors. They were nothing short of geniuses to have made this cuisine so easily available to the world.

My week started with this little packet coming in. It contained a lot of new age healthy choices to pick from. I checked the ingredient list too, and found it was pretty clean with no preservatives and/or stabilizers. Citric acid and sodium bi carbonate are simple everyday ingredients that we use in our day to day life anyways. So I was eager to try their range the very next day. And I loved what I ate. Undoubtedly they had everything that they promised to provide. I dunked my idly in a sambhar flavoured chutney which was easy to put together on a busy workday morning, and yet gave the satisfaction of a proper South Indian breakfast. The ingredients are simple and are always available in my pantry. And this recipe literally takes less than 10 minutes to put together. So, there is no more reasons available to anyone for not having a proper breakfast in the morning.

3 large tomatoes, pureed
1 medium onion, pureed
2-3 cloves of garlic, pureed
½ inch of peeled ginger, grated
1 heaped tsp or more of Home-made or store bought Sambhar masala. I used homemade.
Salt, sugar, turmeric and red chilly powder to taste
2 tbsp oil
½ tsp mustard seeds or rai
1 sprig of curry leaves, washed and dried

In a pan, add a tbsp. of oil, and fry the onion and garlic paste till the raw smell disappears. Add in the tomato puree and ginger and let it simmer till the oil separates out of the mix. I do this step while making and drinking my morning coffee, the mix sizzles while I get ready for the busy work day morning.

Now once the oil separates out of the wet masala mix, add in the sambhar powder and turmeric powder. Stir vigorously to combine. Let the masala penetrate the vegetables well.

Once the chutney starts smelling aromatic, taste. If its homemade sambhar masala, you would know about the seasoning, but if its store bought, chances are that salt is already present in the spice mix. So taste well before seasoning to your liking. I like to balance the salt, sugar and red chilly well. At times I even add a dash of white vinegar at this stage, but it really depends on how sour my tomatoes are to begin with.

Once you are happy about the seasoning, get ready to temper the chutney.
In a small tadka pan, heat a tbsp. of oil. Pour in ½ tsp of mustard seeds till it splutters and fills the oil with its earthy fragrance. Now let it off the heat and drop in the curry leaves to fry off in the residual heat. As the spluttering sound stops, pour in the hot aromatic oil onto the chutney, mix well and let steep covered for 5 minutes, before serving.

An easy, delicious chutney is ready to be enjoyed with fresh hot steamed idly, or crisp dosa. I have also applied it on a toast and had it with an poached egg. It was beyond beautiful!!


This post is brought to you in association with Gits Food. The recipe and picture are IP of the author herself. 

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