Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Arachu vitta sambar, Kovakkai (tindora) varuval, Podalangai (padval) poriyal

I have lots of Indian vegetables stocked in my fridge after my last week's Indian grocery shop visit. I had murungakai (drumsticks), podalangai(padval), kovakkai(tindora) and fresh coconut. So decided to make some very Indian (specifically Tamilian) dishes with those vegetables for dinner last night. When I think of drumsticks the first thing that comes to my mind is Sambar. I was bored of making the regular sambar and hence decided to go with arachu vitta sambar. The main ingredient in this type of sambar is the freshly ground masala and it adds a very unique and different taste. Then decided to do something spicy and dry to go with it and hence a varuval. With the fresh coconut I decided to do some poriyal. So the final menu was arachu vitta murungakkai (drumsticks) sambar, kovakkai (tindora) (ivy gourd) varuval and podalangai (padval) (snake gourd) poriyal.

Arachu Vitta Sambar:


Thur dal (cooked and mashed) – 1½ cups
Drumsticks (cut) – ½ cup
Onion (chopped) – 2
Tomatoes (chopped) – 2
Tamarind extract – ½ cup
Oil - 4 tbsp
Dry ingredients:
Bengal gram dal (channa dal) – 2 tbsp
Coriander seeds (dhania) – 2 tbsp
Red chillies – 6
Fenugreek seeds (methi) – 1 tsp
Coconut (shredded) – 3 tbsp

Powder ingredients:
Sambar powder – 1tbsp (optional)
Chilli powder – 1 tsp
Turmeric – a pinch
Salt – as needed
Seasoning ingredients:
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Split urad dal – 1 tsp
Curry leaves – 1 sprig


Fry the dry ingredients in a pan, adding a tsp of oil and till the coconut becomes a little dry. Let it cool and then dry grind to a powder. Cook drumstick with a pinch of turmeric, with enough water. Heat oil in a pan and add chopped onions. Fry till the onions turn brown and then add tomatoes. Once the tomatoes turn mushy add the ground powder and the other powder ingredients. Add cooked drumsticks, dal and the tamarind extract. Add two cups of water and let it cook for 15-20 min on medium heat. Heat oil in another pan, add seasoning ingredients and once the mustard starts to splutter add to the sambar mixture. Turn off the heat and serve with rice.

Kovakai (tindora) (ivy gourd) varuval:


Kovakkai (tindora) (sliced) – 1 cup
Onion (chopped) – 1
Garlic (chopped) – 3 cloves
Powder ingredients:
Chilli powder – 2 tsp
Turmeric – 1 tsp
Salt – as needed
Seasoning ingredients:
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Split urad dal – 1 tsp


Heat oil in a pan and then add the seasoning ingredients. Once the mustard seeds start to splutter add the onion and garlic. Fry the onions till they turn golden brown and then add the chopped kovakkai. Add the powder ingredients and simmer and fry till the kovakkai turns a little crispy and dry.

Podalangai (padval) (Snake gourd) poriyal:


Podalangai (Snake gourd) (chopped) – 1cup
Onion (chopped) – ½
Coconut (shredded) – 2 tsp
Salt – as needed
Seasoning Ingredients:
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Split urad dal – 1 tsp
Red chillies – 3


Heat oil in a pan and then add the seasoning ingredients. Once the mustard seeds start to splutter add the chopped onion. Fry the onions till they turn golden brown and then add the chopped podalangai. Add salt, pour one cup of water and let it cook for 15 min till the podalangai is cooked. Finally add shredded coconut and turn off the heat.


Anonymous said...

Namaste deepaji,

I came across your blog by chance. Looks like you've just started blogging. I must say, you are doing an amazing job. Your pictures are very good and your recipes list every ingredient and methodology in detail.
I have bookmarked your blog and will definitely visit it often. Keep up the good work.

Deepz said...

Hello anonymous,
Thanks for the compliment. Yes I jus started blogging and will try to update as often as possible. Pls do revisit and leave suggestions/comments.

Sivakumar said...

Good one Deepa.Started having fans immediately..Nice one


Anonymous said...

Sooperb job Deeps!! Especially the dates milkshake.. waiting to try that out !!!Keep it up...

Anonymous said...

hey..u know what.. Abi told me abt this blog spot.
Truly good.
I love the pics..very very inviting..and you have really done a good amount of experimenting..
Kalakku po..

Yeah I accept..you should cook what you want..

Anandhi R
( ex-syntellite )

Deepz said...

thanks anandhi. leave me ure suggestions whenever u hav time.

JV said...

Hi Deepa, bumped into your blog looking for traditional madras kovakkai poriyal. Your recipes are easy to follow and certainly authentic. Keep up the good work.
JV, Adelaide

Deepz said...

Thanks JV. Do check often.

Anonymous said...

Hi deepa,

I am also Deepa and I came across ur blog accidentally. I am very fond of drumsticks but always make the same sambhar with dal and wanted to know how to do arachu vitta sambar and at last I came to know how to prepare it, thanks, i even tried it and it came out very good. my husband really enjoyed it. thanks, waiting for u to post more receipes

princess said...

Really nice Experiments

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your delicious recipe. I tried it out and I must say I was pleased with myself. It was delicious. Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Hello Dee(sister)ps,

I am spinster,who stay alone an don hv much ideas abt cooking,my job was study eat,work n sleep.As fillings alwayz rice curd,egg,bread, and Noodles..i really love my mums arachvita sambar.Im in banglore and mum in Tamil Nadu.. i tried it.. and my feoncy was shocked to see me cooking.. gradually m learning and its quite intrusting.. i am working in night shift. suggest me some yummy dishes that i can cook fast for lunch.. bcoz i sleep till 2 pm in the noon. and thanks for ur blog.. It really helped me a lot. In other word u have offered food for unknown in some corner of world. Hope u came to knw y i mentioned Dee(sis) now... Take care!!

shankar said...

Hi Deepa,
Today I came across your blog.. seems to be very simple and useful.. great jos.. keep on move..
extremely useful for bachelors like me...thanks
Shankar J

INDRA said...

Hello Deepa,

I m recently married and i want a good blog to improve my cooking, thus i found out with tamilnadu style cooking. Keep up the best work.

Your post are all good.

havigaya said...

I tried this recipe,sambar came very well.thank you for your delecious recipe

Anonymous said...

I really like you blog. I have book marked it and use most of your recipes.. Your aracha vitta sambar is a hit at my place.. Thanks and all the best.. God Bless