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  • Sambhar Powder

    YIELD: 1 CUP / 188 G
    TOOLS: You’ll need a shallow, heavy pan; a plate; and a spice grinder or powerful blender, such as a Vitamix; a large mixing bowl; and a whisk.

    This is the perfect spice blend to add to the South Indian lentil and vegetable stew that shares its name, sambhar. It’s also a great blend to keep on hand when you want to change the flavor profiles of a curry chicken or dal makhani. It’s also delicious sprinkled over rice or homemade popcorn.

    • 1 tablespoon dhuli urad (dried, split, and skinned black dal), picked over and washed
    • 1 tablespoon dhuli moong (dried, split, and skinned green dal), picked over and washed (they look yellow)
    • ¼ cup /50 g chana dal, (dried, split, and skinned gram or black chickpeas), picked over and washed
    • ½ cup /40 g coriander seeds
    • ½ cup /40 g whole dried red chiles, broken into pieces
    • ½ cup /10 g firmly packed fresh curry leaves
    • 1 heaping tablespoon cumin seeds
    • 1 heaping tablespoon black mustard seeds
    • 1 tablespoon fenugreek seeds
    • 2 3-inch /2 8-cm sticks cinnamon
    • 20 whole black peppercorns
    • 1 heaping tablespoon white poppy seeds
    • 3 tablespoons /20 g turmeric powder

    1. Combine all the ingredients, except the turmeric, in a shallow, heavy pan over medium heat and dry roast the spices for 7 minutes. It is very important to start with the dals, so they remain closest to the heat and cook thoroughly. During the entire cooking time, shake the pan every 15 to 20 seconds to prevent the spices from burning. You have to be extra careful with the poppy seeds, which can burn easily. They can also be added at the end of the cook time. The dals should be slightly brown, the curry leaves should start to curl, and the spices should be aromatic. Remove from the heat, transfer to a plate, and set aside to cool for 15 minutes.

    2. Place the cooled, roasted ingredients in a spice grinder or a powerful blender, such as a Vitamix, and process into a fine powder. Take your time, as this may take a few minutes. If your spice grinder is small, you may need to grind it in several small batches. Sift after grinding to refine the powder or use as is. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.

    3. Add the turmeric to the mixing bowl and whisk to combine. If you add the turmeric when grinding, it can discolor the blender jug.

    4. Store in an airtight (preferably glass) jar in a cool, dry place for up to 6 months.

Indian For Everyone by Anupy Singla. Copyright © 2014 Anupy Singla. Published by Agate Publishing. All rights reserved.

© 2016 Alta Editions LLC.