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Curry Leaf Sambar
Serves 4

5-6 dried red chiles
1 tsp black peppercorns
1 tsp asafoetida powder
2 tsp black gram dal (washed urad dal), picked over and rinsed
1 1/2 tsp uncooked rice
approx. 30 curry leaves
a lemon-sized piece of tamarind pulp
a little water
2 cups water
salt to taste

For Tempering
2 Tbs. sesame oil
1 tsp brown mustard seeds
1/4 tsp fenugreek seeds
1 red chile, halved

Paste: Place the red chiles, black peppercorns, asafoetida powder,
black gram dal, and rice in a heavy frying pan or skillet. Heat
through gently until the spices become fragrant, about 2-3 minutes.
Place in an electric blender or food processor. Add curry leaves,
tamarind pulp, and very little water. Blend to a fine paste.

Dissolve the paste in 2 cups water. Add salt to taste and set

Tempering: Heat 2 Tbs sesame oil in a heavy saucepan. Add the
mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, and halved red chile. When the
mustard seeds splutter, add the dissolved paste, and simmer until
the sambar thickens. Serve hot with rice and roasted poppadoms.

Note: This thick, spicy sambar should be eaten with more rice than
is usual with other sambars. Mix 1/4 tsp ghee or oil with the rice
to help to bring out the flavor.


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