Ulli Sambar is my favourite type of sambar and I make it whenever I feel bored of the regular veggie Sambar. Ulli is the malayalam term for Onion and the onions used in this recipe are the small ones which are called sambar onions/shallots. I make two versions of this sambar. The easiest version is this recipe. The other one is my Amma's recipe in which the gravy is made with roast and ground coconut. Will post that sometime later...
Toor dal - 1/2 cup
Small onion/Shallots peeled - 1 cup
Garlic - 2 or 3 cloves
Green chillies - 3, slit
Tomato - 1
Coriander powder - 2 tbsp
Red chilly powder - 3/4 to 1 tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Fenugreek powder - 1/4 tsp (dry roast the seeds and then powder)
Hing/Asafoetida - 1/4 tsp
Tamarind - a small lemon sized
Oil - 1 tbsp
Salt to taste
Oil - 2 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Dry red chillies - 2
Curry leaves - a few
Note: You may substitute coriander and chilly powders with your regular sambar powder.
1. Pressure cook the toor dal with 2 cups of water for 1-2 whistles. The dal should be cooked but not mushy. Keep aside.
2. Soak the tamarind in warm water and extract the juice.
3. Peel the sambar onions. If onions are large, cut into 2. Otherwise use the whole onion. Heat oil in a pan and saute the onions till they are transparent. Add the green chillies and garlic and saute for 1-2 minutes. Add coriander, chilly, turmeric and fenugreek powder and combine.
4. Add the cooked dal, tamarind juice, tomato, salt and enough water. Cook till onions are cooked and sambar thickens. Take care not to overcook as onions turn mushy. Add hing now.
5.Heat oil in a tadka pan and splutter mustard seeds. Add dry chillies and curry leaves and pour this seasoning to the sambar.
Serve hot with rice
Sending to Anyone can cook: Series 33 and to The Kerala Kitchen hosted by Divya Kudua