This is a recipe which is very popular in our house. Amma used to prepare this every weekend. This is prepared with shallots and fresh murungukka. My favorite combination was with cabbage or potato curry. I made this dish last weekend with spinach (keerai masiyal) and cabbage/ carrot curry with javarsi vadam (sabudhana papad).
Shallots (small red onions/ kutti vengayam): 8-10
Toor dal: 1 cup
Tamarind: 2 tsp (soaked in 1 cup warm water for 10 min)
Sambar powder: 1 tsp (use MTR madras sambar powder in case you don't have homemade :)- recipe soon to follow)
Turmeric (3/4 tsp)
Asafoetida: 2 pinches
Sesame seed oil- 1 tbsp
Coriander leaves- a few leaf strands (nicely chopped)
Salt to taste
Mustard seed - 1 tsp
Sesame seed oil- 1 tsp
Curry Leaves- 3 to 4
1. Peel the shallots and cut each slice into half
2. Heat some sesame seed oil in the pan and add the asafoetida and the shallots. (You may skip this step, I usually do it to avoid the raw smell of onions)
3. Marginally cook the shallots (do not fry them)
4. Squeeze the tamarind juice and add it to the cooked shallots.
5. Add the sambar powder and turmeric and let the entire mixture boil in medium high for 15 min.
6. Boil the toor dal and add it to the mixture
7. Add salt to the sambar
8. For the tadka heat oil in a separate pan, add mustard seeds and let it splutter.
9. Add the curry leaves to the ooil and pour it over the sambar.
10. Garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves