PALAKOTTAI  AND KANI VELLARI SAMBAR

Jack Fruit Seeds have been in use in Indian kitchens since time immemorial , much before researchers found out about their nutritive value and health benefits . My brother’s home grown Jack Fruit does not need the customary honey dip since the fruit itself tastes as sweet as honey ! Like always we enjoyed the luscious fruit and collected and saved up all the seeds for future use during this season as well.  

A spicy Sambar with Jack Fruit Seeds and Yellow Cucumber (Golden Cucumber also known as Kani Vellari in Malayalam) with steaming hot rice is the perfect food to enjoy on a cold and rainy day !

The outer shells of the Jack Fruit seeds crack open when they are sun dried . They can be easily peeled and cooked along with dal . Or they can be cooked with the shell , peeled and then added to the sambar.

                                                                                  

INGREDIENTS                                                                                                             

                                                                                

Jack Fruit Seeds – 10 to12

Yellow Cucumber – 1 small (Peeled and cubed)

Tamarind – 1 lemon size ball

Salt – 1 1/2 tsps

Tur Dal – 1/2 cup 

Turmeric powder – 1/ 4 tsp

Curry leaves – a few

INGREDIENTS FOR ROASTING AND GRINDING

Coriander seeds – 1 tbsp

Bengal gram dal – 1 tbsp

Red Chillies – 8 ( broken)

Fenugreek seeds – 1/4 tsp

Asafoetida – 1 pinch

Grated coconut – 2 tbsps

Sesame oil – 1 tsp

MAKING THE SPICE POWDER

1. Heat half tea spoon of oil in a kadai and roast coriander seeds, Bengal gram dal, fenugreek seeds, and red chillies together till it emanates a pleasant aroma. Add asafoetida and roast for another minute.

2. Switch off flame and add the fresh coconut gratings and roast in the still hot kadai .

3. Allow to cool and grind the roasted ingredients into a smooth powder .

TO MAKE THE SAMBAR

1. Pressure cook the dal adding 1 1/2 cups of water and turmeric powder. 

2. Place a plate with Jack Fruit seeds on top of the dal container so that they get cooked simultaneously.

                                                                                

3. Mash the cooked dal and keep aside . Peel the shells of the Jack Fruit seeds and keep aside.

4. Soak tamarind in warm water and extract the juice adding two glasses of water.

5. Add salt and cook the cucumber cubes in tamarind juice.

6. When the cucumber cubes are soft add the mashed dal and the cooked and peeled Jack Fruit seeds.

7. Mix the ground spice powder with little water and stir into the boiling sambar.

8. Stir and cook till the spice blends well with dal emanating a pleasant aroma.

9. Heat the remaining oil in a seasoning ladle and splutter the curry leaves, and pour it on the sambar . 

Enjoy the Palakottai and Kani Vellari Sambar with steaming hot rice topped with a spoon of fresh ghee!

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