Living in a gated community has, among other many benefits, the interaction with like minded people and more importantly, sharing experiences, ideas and food. There are days when I am wondering what to cook for lunch or even breakfast, the solution comes from a neighbour who brings a bowl full of something, a variety rice or side dish. Sometimes the number of dishes are so many, that I save them in the refrigerator. As of now, inside my fridge are a variety of thokkus ,preserved chutneys and pickles from few of the people who put delicious food on their table everyday.
We have quite a few mango trees in the compound which are of different varieties of mangoes. Thus, come March, these trees yield fruits in different stages of ripening. One of our neighbours shared two tangy raw mangoes one day and asked me what I would be using those for, other than making a pickle. I requested her to suggest a recipe and she shared this Pachcha Maanga Sambhar. I made it the same day and we liked it very much. The following is the quick recipe that is a good side dish to go with hot, steamed rice.
Pachcha Maanga Sambhar.
(vegan and seasonal recipe)
Serves 2 people
1 medium raw mango (sour mangoes are best)(otherwise use a tablespoon of tamarind extract for sourness)
1/2 cup thur dhal (pressure cook to soft and mash)
2 teaspoons sesame oil (any cooking oil)
2 teaspoons sambhar powder
2 green chillis
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
1/4teaspoon asafoetida powder
1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds (optional)
1 clove garlic crushed (optional)
Salt to taste
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
2 sprigs of curry leaves
Cut the mango in big chunks. Use the stone also in cooking.
In a pan add 2 teaspoons of oil. When the oil is moderately hot, add turmeric powder, asfoetida powder, fenugreek seeds, garlic, slit green chillis and salt. Saute for a minute or two.
To the above add sambhar powder and 2 cups of water. Let it boil for about 10 minutes.
Once the raw feel of ingredients has subsided, add the mango. Bring to a boil. Do not let it boil for long. The mango has to hold shape and let the sourness blend with the liquid.
Add the cooked dhal and bring it all to a boil. Switch the heat off.
In another pan heat the oil for tempering.
Add the mustard seeds and let the crackle.
Switch the stove off and drop the curry leaves.
Add the tempering to the sambhar.
Serve with hot steamed rice.
Note: If the mango is not sour enough and you are adding tamarind extract, boil the extract in the first stage itself.