Category Archives: Dals & curries

Radish Sambar or Mullangi Sambar

My husband is a huge fan of this type of sambar. Every time we bought radish I used think I will make it and somewhere it used to just slip out of my mind. I would end up making muli ka paratha or may be mulyachi  koshimbir. But this time when I bought radish, I had sworn that I will stick to the sambar plan.

My husband is a Kannadiga and comes from a family where his mother and most of his aunts are amazing cooks. He has been eating various types of sambar and all other authentic south Indian preparations from his childhood. So this was like a huge task for me to live up to that expectation. And I must tell you all, why so. You all must have seen the Everest Sambar masala ad, where the husband feels his wife cannot cook sambar and the sambar his wife has made using Everest Sambar masala tastes so authentic that he feels his south-Indian neighbour Mrs. Reddy has made it. We have a similar story. Girish thinks that I can cook everything but not authentic sambar. So I took the challenge.

Searching through the Google pages I found this recipe. It was easy and quick to make.  Thanks to Dassana for this tasty recipe. It was so perfect that I didn’t have to make any alterations to the recipe.  And it goes without saying that my husband absolutely loved it (Yesss!!!!). After the first morsel that ‘mmmm yummy’ sounds said it all. And that’s like a compliment of tallest order in my house. (Happyface !!!!) I am going to make it regularly now. :)

This is how it looked..

Mula sambhar_foodlyrics


for the sambar:

  • ½ cup toor dal/pigeon pea lentils
  • 2 cups peeled & sliced white radish/daikon/mooli
  • ¼ cup tamarind pulp – ¾ or 1 tbsp tamarind soaked in ¼ cup water for 20-25 minutes and then squeezed with the juice extracted & strained.
  • 2-3 tsp sambar powder
  • 1 tsp mustard
  • ¼ tsp fenugreek/methi seeds
  • 5-6 shallots, chopped
  • 1-2 red chilies, halved or kept whole
  • ¼ tsp asafoetida
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 1 medium size tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 or 1.5 cups water
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • salt as required


  • Pick and rinse the dal well.
  • Pressure cook the dal with a pinch of turmeric in 2 or 2.5 cups water.
  • Meanwhile as the dal is cooking, soak the tamarind in ¼ cup water. Also chop all the veggies that are required like radish, shallots, tomatoes etc.
  • Once the pressure of the cooker drops down on its own, open the lid.The dal would be cooked. If the dal is not cooked, then pressure cook again adding some water if required.Lightly mash the cooked dal with a wooden spoon and keep aside.
  • Heat oil in another pan. Add the mustard and let them splutter. Now add methi seeds.
  • Add the shallots. Fry till the shallots become transparent.
  • Add the tomatoes and curry leaves. Fry for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the radish and turmeric powder. Stir and fry for a minute. Add water and salt. Stir and cook over medium flame till the radish slices are cooked.
  • Add the tamarind pulp and sambar powder.
  • Stir and add the cooked dal.
  • Simmer till the whole mixture is blended well and the raw aroma of the tamarind disappears.
  • If the sambar appears thick, then add some more water and simmer for a few minutes.
  • Garnish with coriander leaves.
  • Serve the radish sambar with steamed rice or idli or dosa.

Mula sambhar_foodlyrics



Review ~ Ching’s Secret Red Curry Paste. Recipe for Veg Thai Red Curry

Thai Red Curry _ Foodlyrics

Around 1 year back we tried Thai curry at a restaurant for the first time. We wanted to taste something different, something out of the box which we were sure, we had never tasted. I had heard about Thai curry, but I was very skeptical as I knew fish sauce is added to the curry :( But this particular had an option sans the fish sauce so I immediately opted for it :) :) It’s been a regular order since then. The aroma of the curry, vegetables in it, basil & the mind blowing taste of kafir lime leaves makes the curry to die for.

I found a vegetarian recipe with a huge list of ingredients. I started going through it and THEN it said fish sauce. I kept the recipe aside and started to look for a new one. I did find a few and once again went back to the humongous task of collecting the ingredients. While I was at it, I saw this line on bottles placed on a rack of Big Bazaar which said Chings Secret  Red Curry Paste with a Green Dot. I thought of buying it but then hesitated as it could be very expensive. I went ahead and came back all the way to check the price. I was really surprised looking at the price tag which was Rs 140/-. It was quite unbelievable as such exotic items and preparations cost quite a bomb. I took it right away, raced home and started preparing it. I generally have broccoli, colored bell peppers, mushrooms at my place. Luckily I had picked up baby corn as well. Everything was ready to cook.

I followed the instructions with a few changes from my side and the curry was ready within half an hour. The taste was exactly like what I had in the restaurant. Plus I had the option of making it more spicier simply by adding more paste from the bottle. It’s a super quick way of making this exotic Thai curry without any effort. This fits into “anybody can cook” and “lazy cook” category ;). Perfect for people who don’t like to spend a lot of time in the kitchen. You could ask your husband’s to give it a go while you rest and enjoy your timeout. Don’t let me get started with aroma that fills your house!!!

Let’s do a little costing as well. I pay almost double or triple of what I had spent to buy the bottle, vegetables and coconut. The order in the restaurant serves just one person while this served 2-3 people at least. I have used only half of the paste so becomes really worth the buck.

They have put a good effort in making it look authentic. Packaging is really good. Comes in a very cute little bottle with a black lid, excellent for future food photographs.


My warning – Do not open the lid if you do not wish to make it right away, cause you CANNOT resist the aroma that springs out right into your nose and down to your tummy ;)

This also becomes first review for a product. I hope you’ll all give it a try. The best part is that you get it at any supermarket, you don’t have run around searching for a gourmet store. And it’s quick, there is no hassle of collecting en number of ingredients. If you feel like eating a Thai curry late at night, this is it !

My verdict is, you should give it a try, specially all your vegetarians out there. I would give it 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Have a go and let me know, how yours turns out :)



3 tbsp Ching’s secret red curry paste (the pack says 2 tbspn but I feel you need 3)
2 cups (200 gms) of cut vegetables (I used Broccoli, Red, Yellow bell pepper & baby corn)
1 cup water
400 ml of coconut milk
Steamed rice to serve with the curry


I have followed the instructions and procedure as per mentioned on the bottle. The only change that I made was the vegetables I’ve used and I add a little more extra fresh holy-basil (It made no difference to the taste). I have also used homemade coconut milk.

  • Take a large saucepan and simmer 200 ml coconut milk along with the water.
  • Add the vegetables, Ching’s Secret Red Curry Paste and stir well.
  • Simmer on low heat for 10 mins till the vegetables are cooked.
  • Now add the remaining 200 ml of coconut milk and continue to simmer for another 3 minutes.
  • Serve hot with steamed rice.


You may also serve this curry with appam or set dosa.


Aamti (Maharashtrian Dal)

This is a typical maharashtrian dal recipe which is included in daily meals in most of the Marathi houses. Goda masala and dried mangosteen peels give it a particular taste and flavor which makes it very much marathi.

One of my favorite styles of this aamti is prepared by mother and since I remember the taste hasn’t changed a bit. I and my brother used to actually eat it like a soup. Can’t get enough of it!

This is my version of my beloved aamti. Hope you all like it!

Ingredients –

Split Pigeon Pea (Toovar Dal) – 1 cup
Oil – 2 teaspoons
Mustard Seeds – ½ teaspoon
Cumin Seeds (Jeera) – ½ teaspoon
Turmeric Powder – ½ teaspoon
Asafoetida- ½ teaspoon
Green chilies (finely chopped) – 1 tablespoon
Curry leaves – 5-6
Goda masala – 2 teaspoons
Jaggery – 1 ½ tablespoons
Dried Mangosteen peel (Amsool) – 2-3

Procedure –

  • Wash the toovar dal and soak it in 1 ½ cups of water for half an hour. Along with the water cook the dal in a pressure cooker for 3 whistles. Once the steam is released from the pressure cooker remove the dal and mash it along with the water and keep aside.
  • In a pan heat oil. Add the mustard and cumin seeds. Once they crackle add the green chilies, curry leaves, turmeric powder and asafoetida.
  • Add the mashed dal and some more water to adjust the consistency. Shouldn’t be too runny or too thick.
  • Put in the goda masala, dried mangosteen peels, jaggery and let it boil for 4-5 minutes.
  • Garnish with chopped coriander and freshly desiccated coconut. Serve hot with rice or rotis.

Tips –

You may use thick tamarind juice (2 tablespoons) instead of dried mangosteen peels.
Always soak the dal before pressure cooking; it helps to save a lot of fuel.

Let me know what do you think about this recipe. Do comment.


Rasam is typical south Indian dish, a part of regular meals. It is generally consumed with rice or even consumed as a type of soup. The main ingredient of rasam is the rasam powder which adds and extra ordinary aroma and the tamarind and jaggery give it a nice tangy and sweet taste.

Enjoy this wonderful south Indian recipe. Include this in your meals to take a break from the typical dal.

Ingredients –

Split Pigeon Pea (Toovar Dal) – 1 cup
Rasam Powder – 3 heaped teaspoons
Tomato (finely chopped) – 1 medium sized
Tamarind juice –3-4 tablespoons
Jaggery (crushed) – 2 tablespoons
Salt – to taste

For tempering –

Oil- 1 tablespoons
Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon
Dried red chilies – 1- 2
Curry leaves – 5-6
Asafoetida – ½ teaspoon

Procedure –

  • Cook the split pigeon pea along with 1 ½ cups of water in a pressure cooker for 3-4 whistles. Once the steam is released from the cooker mash the cooked dal along with the water.
  • In a pan bring to boil the tamarind juice and jaggery along with some water.
  • Add the tomatoes and rasam powder and let it boil.
  • Add the cooked dal, salt and add 2cups of water to it. Let it boil
  • Now in another pan heat oil and add the mustard seeds. Once it crackles add asafoetida, curry leaves and dried red chilies.
  • Pour this over the boiled dal.
  • Serve with rice.

Tips –

Rasam has usually a watery consistency. When one has sore throat, consumption of rasam (only the watery part minus the dal) helps sooth it.

I would love to hear from you about the recipe. Do comment.

Rajma Masala

Rajma, also known as Kidney beans, is a very famous and common ingredient of north Indian meals. It does not have its origin in India but was brought from Mexico. It is generally consumed along with rice.

Enjoy this finger licking dish!

Ingredients –
Rajma (Kidney beans) – 1 ½ cups
Water – 5 cups
Oil – 3 tablespoons
Onions (minced) – 3 medium sized
Ginger paste – 1 ½ teaspoons
Garlic paste – 1 ½ teaspoons
Tomato puree – 2 cups
Salt – to taste

Dry Masala-
Turmeric powder – ½ teaspoon
Garam masala – 2 tablespoons
Red chili powder – 1 tablespoon
Cumin powder – 1 teaspoon
Coriander powder – 1 teaspoon
Chat masala – 2 teaspoons

Procedure –

  • Wash thoroughly and soak the rajma over night in 5 cups of water.
  • In a pressure cooker add the rajma along with the water used for soaking and cook for 5 whistles on high flame. Then reduce the flame and cook for more 10 -15 minutes.
  • In a thick bottomed pan heat the oil and add the minced tomatoes, ginger and garlic paste. Sauté till the water evaporated from the onions and they are brown in color.
  • Now add the tomato puree and all the dry masala ingredients. Mix well. Sauté on low flame till the oil separates. You may add a little amount of water to prevent the masala from burning.
  • Add the pressure cooked rajma along with the water. Add salt. Let it boil properly.
  • Serve hot with rice or rotis.

Tips –
Rajma takes times to cook so do follow the pressure cooking time.
Adjust the water quantity as per required. The quantity mentioned in the recipe makes liquid gravy ideal to eat with rice. You may reduce the water according if eating having with rotis.
Pressure cooking always helps to reduce the fuel consumption.
Rajma is quite heavy to digest so take care :).