Nanjil Sambar - Nagercoil Style Sambar

Nanjil Sambar - prepared with the  combination of seasonal vegetables, toor dal and flavoured with freshly prepared sambar powder. Another interesting recipe from my Rema athai. As Nagercoil is her hometown, I learned many nanjil recipes from her. Nanjil refers to the area around Nagercoil, Agastheeswaram, Thovalai etc. Last month I prepared 30 varieties Nanjil recipes for the Aval Vikatan magazine. I have no time to take step by step pictures for all the 30 recipes, but took some pictures for a few recipes. All the 30 varieties are evergreen recipes of Nanjil.


This Nanjil sambar is one of my favourite sambar for lunch. This sambar is similar to our Tirunelveli idi sambar but there is no need for any coconut paste.In both Tirunelveli sambar and idi sambar we add coconut paste in the final stage. For this sambar, you need fresh vegetables like drumsticks, brinjal, lady's finger, raw mango, yellow pumpkin, potato and carrot. Plus sambar onions, green chillies and freshly ground sambar powder are required to prepare this delicious sambar. The freshly ground sambar powder is the main ingredient in this sambar, so do not skip or interchange with other sambar powder. The next important ingredient in Nanjil sambar is the toor dal. The toor dal must be cooked well and you have to add more dal when compared to your regular sambar. My athai told me these points to keep in mind before preparing this sambar. She also mentioned to use good quality, unpolished toor dal for perfect results. Now let's see how to prepare this Sambar with step by step instructions.

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Nanjil Sambar - Nagercoil Style Sambar Recipe Details
 
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Prep time : 20 minutes
Cook time : 30 minutes
Serves : 4
Category : kuzhambu
Author : Muthulakshmi Madhavakrishnan

Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup toor dal
  • 10 small onions
  • 2 drumstick
  • 4 lady's finger
  • 1 brinjal
  • 1 small carrot
  • 1 small potato
  • 5 small piece raw mango
  • 7 small pumpkin cubes
  • 2 green chillies
  • small lemon sized tamarind
  • small piece asafoetida
  • 1/4 tsp fenugreek
  • 1/2 tsp mustard
  • 1/2 tsp urid dal
  • 1 dried red chilly
  • few curry leaves
  • few coriander leaves
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • salt to taste
For sambar powder
  • 7 dried red chillies
  • 1.5 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp fenugreek
Cooking Directions
  1. Take a  pressure cooker or pan and add the toor dal. Rinse it with water for a couple of times and soak the dal with 1.5 cups of water for 20 minutes. Soak the tamarind with 1 cup of warm water.
  2. After 20 minutes, pressure cook the dal for 8 to 10 whistles. Extract the tamarind juice with 2 cups of water.
  3. Heat a pan and add the coriander seeds and fry them well until you get a nice aroma. When the seeds start to turn brown, add the fenugreek, cumin and fry for a few seconds. Finally, add the red chillies and roast it just for a second and turn off the heat. (Do not roast until the red chillies turn black). Allow it to cool down. Now add it to a small chutney jar and grind it well.
  4. Peel the onions and cut all the vegetables as you like it. 
  5. Take a wide vessel and add 2 cups of water. Add drumstick, brinjal and potato. Close it with the lid and cook the vegetables on medium heat.
  6. Heat a tbsp of oil in a pan and add fenugreek. When it pops up add the small onions, green chillies, carrot and lady's finger. Stir and saute  the vegetables for a few minutes.
  7. When the drumstick and brinjal are half done, add these sauted vegetables and cook well.
  8. When all the vegetables are cooked well add the pumpkin cubes, raw mango pieces, turmeric powder tamarind extract which is mixed with freshly ground sambar powder asafoetida and required salt.
  9. Close it with a lid and cook for 6 to 9 minutes.Next, add the cooked dal  and 1 cup of water. Mix it well with the vegetables and allow the sambar to boil well for 7 to 9 minutes. Check for the salt and other seasonings and add if anything required.
  10. When you get a nice aroma from the sambar add the curry leaves and coriander leaves and turn off the heat.
  11. Heat a tsp of oil in a pan and add the mustard and urid dal. When it splutters add the red chilly and fry for a second and add it to the hot sambar. Mix it well and close it with the lid. 

Nanjil Sambar - Nagercoil Style Sambar with step by step photos 

Take a pressure cooker or pan and add the toor dal. Rinse it with water for a couple of times and soak the dal with 1.5 cups of water for 20 minutes. Soak the tamarind with 1 cup of warm water.

After 20 minutes, pressure cook the dal for 8 to 10 whistles. Extract the tamarind juice with 2 cups of water.


Heat a pan and add the coriander seeds and fry them well until you get a nice aroma. When the seeds start to turn brown add the fenugreek, cumin and fry for a few seconds. Finally, add the red chillies and roast it just for a second and turn off the heat. (Do not roast until the red chillies turn black).


Allow it to cool down for a while and  add it to a small chutney jar and grind it well.


 Peel the small onions and cut all the vegetables as you like it.

Take a wide vessel and add 2 cups of water. Add drumstick, brinjal and potato. Close it with the lid and cook the vegetables on medium heat.

Heat a tbsp of oil in a pan and add fenugreek. When it pops up add the small onions, green chillies, carrot and lady's finger. Stir and saute  the vegetables for a few minutes.

 When the drumstick and brinjal are half done, add these sauted vegetables and cook well.

Now add the required salt, freshly powdered sambar powder to the tamarind extract. Mix the sambar powder well with the tamarind extract without any lumps.


Next, add the asafoetida to the tamarind extract.

When all the vegetables are cooked well add the pumpkin cubes, raw mango pieces, tamarind extract and  turmeric powder. Close it with a lid and cook for 6 to 9 minutes

Next, add the cooked dal  and 1 cup of water. Mix it well with the vegetables and allow the sambar to boil well for 7 to 9 minutes. Check for the salt and other seasonings and add if anything required.


When you get a nice aroma from the sambar add the curry leaves and coriander leaves and turn off the heat.

Heat a tsp of oil in a pan and add the mustard and urid dal. When it splutters add the red chilly and fry for a second and add it to the hot sambar. Mix it well and close it with the lid. 


Serve the Nanjil sambar with aviyal or eriseri or cabbage thuvaram, lady's finger pachadi and appalam. 



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