Radish (mullangi) sambar tastes as delicious as shallot (chinna vengayam) sambar as they both absorb the flavors of all the spices used in sambar. Hence I like to savour mullangi sambar not only with hot steaming rice but also with idli or dosa.
Health Benefits of radish:
Radish is a good source of Vitamin C (provides immunity), potassium (controls BP), folic acid (needed for pregnant women) & also contains an anthocyanin, a powerful anti-oxidant. You may refer here for its nutrient values published by US Dept. of Agriculture. Although we can enjoy the benefits of radish to the fullest by taking them raw as salad or juice, I have listed below some of the important health benefits.
Since 95% of radish is water we can make radish juice that helps to keep us hydrated during summer. We can also prepare radish salad that acts as a good appetiser & a mouth freshener. Now let us prepare radish sambar or mullangi sambar as below:
Radish Sambar Recipe:
Time taken: 30 min
Yields : 600 ml
- Sesame oil or coconut oil – 1 tsp
- Asafoetida (hing) – a peanut sized block or ¼ tsp powder
- Fenugreek seeds (vendhayam) – ½ tsp
- Red chillies – 2 Nos.
- Curry leaves – 1 sprig
- Tamarind juice extracted from a lemon-sized tamarind – 400 ml
- Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
- Red chilli powder – 1 tbsp (or Kashmiri chilli powder – 1 tsp)
- Radish (mullangi) – 2 Nos.
- Red gram (split pigeon pea or thuvaram paruppu) – ½ cup (100 g)
- Sambar powder – 1 tsp
- Salt – 1 tsp
- Chopped coriander leaves – a handful
Cooking Method :
- Wash lentils, soak them in water (1 cup) & set aside.
- Peel & slice radish into discs and add into lentils.
- Pressure cook lentils & radish after adding 1 cup of water (simmer for 10 min when it reaches high pressure).
- Mash lentils well after keeping radish aside.
- Extract tamarind juice (about 400 ml) and keep aside.
- Heat a cooking pan with oil.
- Add asafoetida block, fenugreek seeds, red chillies & curry leaves one after another and fry them in low flame.
- Pour tamarind juice and add turmeric powder & red chilli powder and bring it to a boil in medium flame.
- Add cooked radish & salt (½ tsp) and let it boil for a minute.
- Add cooked lentils & sambar powder.
- When they start to boil again, cover the pot and simmer for 2 min.
- Add remaining salt & chopped coriander leaves and stir well.
- Remove from heat and keep the pan closed (allowing sambar to get infused with the spices) for 5 min.
- Serve with rice, idli or dosa.
- Radish may be cooked in tamarind juice rather than pressure cooking it along with lentils.
- If you are using store-bought chilli powder that are really hot, you can reduce it to 1 tsp.
- Flavors of the spices used in this recipe help to hide the odour of radish.
- If you are using iodised salt it is always good to add salt just before turning off the stove to prevent iodine being vaporised.
- We can replace redgram (toor dal) with any other lentils like green gram (moong dal) or red lentil (masoor dal) for making sambar.
- We may add any other vegetables shown in the picture below into sambar in the following combination:
- onion, carrot, beans, potato & tomato
- drumstick, brinjal, mango & shallot
- ladies finger, brinjal, any green leaves & shallot
- pumpkin, broad beans (avarai), brinjal & shallot
- bitter gourd, tomato & shallot