Monday, December 4, 2006

Lima Beans Sambar

"Lima beans are rich in the best sort of fiber - soluble fiber - which helps to eliminate cholesterol from the body. They are a good source of potassium, iron, copper and manganese. As a high potassium, low-sodium food they help reduce blood pressure. Not only are they low in fat, but when combined with grains, beans supply high quality protein which provides a healthy alternative to meat or other animal protein. Lima beans also contain protease inhibitors which frustrate the development of cancerous cells."

When i read the above paragraph here, i was naturally tempted to cook something out of it. The first time i saw it, it reminded me of "mochakottai" ( a kind of beans popular in Tamilnadu )... as mochakottai sambar is our favorite, decided to cook Lima beans sambar..and it turned out to be a wise decision with the Lima beans (aka butter beans) being as soft as butter...

This is my post for Kalyn's Weekend Herb Blogging,hosted this week by Pookah of What's Cooking in Carolina... this is one event in which i had always wished to participate even before i had my own blog... now that i have started one, nothing could stop me :)


1/2 lime sized ball Tamarind
1/2 cup Toor Dal

1/2 teaspoon Turmeric Powder

2 teaspoons oil
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds

1 small tomato
1 1/2 tablespoons sambar powder ( see note)

2 fistful Lima beans

1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves (coriander leaves)

Salt to taste


Cooking Dal :
In a pressure cooker, cook Toor Dal and 1 cup of water with a pinch of turmeric and mash them to a smooth paste.
Dal can also be cooked without using pressure cooker, just that this takes time. If you are not using pressure cooker, boil 2 cups of water in a medium saucepan, with turmeric and salt. Add Toor Dal. Reduce heat to med-high and cook covered till Dal has softened.Stir at constant intervals till done and add a bit of water if necessary. This must take somewhere around 30 - 40 mins.

Soak tamarind in 1/2 cup of water for a while ( or microwave it for 3 mins.) Squeeze it out, adding water little by little to prepare 1 cup of juice.

Heat oil in a heavy bottomed vessel.Once the oil is hot,add the mustard seeds and allow it to splutter.
Add fenugreek seeds and after they have turned reddish,add the curry leaves.
After a minute, pour in the tamarind paste and sliced tomatoes.
Now, stir in salt and sambar powder.
Once the mixture starts boiling add the Lima beans and cook for 10 to 15 mins., till the Lima beans become tender.
Now add the mashed Toor Dal paste. Add water to obtain the required consistency and let it simmer for 15 - 20 mins. Turn off the heat and garnish with coriander leaves.

There are various options for sambar powder.
1.The simplest option being ready made sambar powder.
2.To make dry powder:
Roast the following in a pan for 3 mins. till aroma is released (without oil) and grind it to a very smooth powder using spice grinder.
6 red chillies
2 1/2 tablespoon dhaniya
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 tablespoon Toor Dal
1/4 teaspoon Fenugreek seed
When the ingredients are roasted without oil and ground without adding water, they can be stored up to a week
3. The third and the most commonly used method is to roast the above ingredients in oil and make them into a fine paste.

Any of the above methods could be used but the final result is a delicious sambar.

This goes very well with idli, dosa and rice. We had with Anita's (of Mad Tea party) Rava idly for this Sunday brunch and it was yummmmmmmmmy :)

Do try it out and lemme know how it turned out...

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Ultimate Foodie at 11:00 AM



at December 4, 2006 at 2:35:00 PM PST Blogger Asha said...

Me again!:) Wonderful array of food again.You are enjoying blogging fully!

One little advice.Visit some blogs and leave comments so people can come to know you,so they can visit and comment .This advice was given to me when I started to blog around July year.

at December 4, 2006 at 2:59:00 PM PST Blogger Ultimate Foodie said...

U r soo very helpful Asha.. wil definitely follow ur advice and do keep visiting the blog..Thanks a lot!

at December 5, 2006 at 2:28:00 AM PST Anonymous Anita said...

Hey foodie! A big welcome. Lookin' good.

And, the idlies look purrfect too! :)

at December 5, 2006 at 8:49:00 AM PST Blogger Ultimate Foodie said...

The idlis tasted very gud too was a gr8 recipe..thanks and keep visiting :)

at December 11, 2006 at 4:45:00 PM PST Blogger Kalyn said...

What a lovely blog. I just adore your lilies in the blog header. The lima beans sound great too. I'm a fan of lima beans.

at December 12, 2006 at 9:11:00 AM PST Blogger Ultimate Foodie said...

Welcome Kalyn...people like u are a great source of inspiration!


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