Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Thotakura pulusu/Amaranth Sambar

Green leafy vegetables are always known to be nutritious and good for health. When cooked well, they will be tasty and yummy too. Amaranth or thotakura is one such leafy veggie that is regularly used in South Indian homes.

Preparation time: 20-30 mins

Serves: 2

Amaranth leaves(Thotakura/chaulai) 1 bunch
Pigeon peas (kandipappu/toor dal) 1cup (100gms)
Cumin seeds (jeelakarra/jeera) 1tsp
Fenugreek seeds (menthulu/methi seeds) 1tsp
Green chillies 2
Red chillies 2
Sambar powder 2tsps
Ghee 1tsp
Mustard seeds 1tsp
Curry leaves 4-5
Tamarind 1 blob
Pinch of Asafoetida
Salt to taste

Fresh and grated coconut to garnish


Pressure cook 1 cup pigeon peas.

Wash and chop the amaranth leaves. Remove the stem portion and chop only the leaves.

In a vessel/cooking pot, add the chopped amaranth leaves, salt to taste, a blob of tamarind, 2 and a half cups of water and leave to boil on simmer for around 8-10mins. This is a healthy way of cooking the leaves as it retains the nutrients available in them.

While the amaranth leaves are boiling, add 2 slit green chillies, a tsp each of cumin and fenugreek seeds. While green chillies enhance taste, cumin and fenugreek help in digestion.

Add boiled pigeon peas, 2 tsps sambar powder and cook for another 5 mins till thick and consistent ala gravy.

In a pan, heat ghee. Add mustard seeds and as they pop add a red chilli, 4-5 curry leaves and a pinch of asafoetida.

Season the sambar with the above tempering and garnish with fresh and grated coconut before serving.

Thotakura pulusu or amaranth sambar is a highly nutritious recipe, more so because it is cooked in a very healthy way. Ideally had with rice, it tastes good with phulkas too as it is thick like a gravy. Most importantly, its yummy for the tummy.

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