Indian cuisine is full of regional flavors. Even every day to day food cooked in millions of homes across the nation varies depending upon where it is cooked. For example, the simple dal that is cooked all over India, takes various forms in various regions. Here is one such delicious, regional and traditional dal - Amti from the state of Maharasthra. Reading Nupur's description of amti whose recipe I followed, I feel this may be something like the gojju of Karnataka, where the sweet, tangy and spicy flavors rule and also those flavors need to be balanced to create a good amti.
Ingredients for amti masala:
1/2 cup coriander seeds
1/4 cup cumin seeds
2 tsp Shahi jeera (black cumin seeds)
1 inch cinnamon
On low heat, dry roast the spices together until they turn a couple of shades darker. Let cool and grind them fine. Store in a dry container.
Ingredients for amti:
1/2 cup toordal, cooked
For tadka: 2 tsp oil, 1 tsp each - mustard seeds and cumin seeds, a few pinches of asafoetida powder and few curry leaves
1 tsp amti masala
1 tsp chili powder
Salt to taste
1- 2 Tbsp tamarind paste (the original recipe uses less.)
1 tsp jaggery
cilantro to garnish
* Heat 2 tsp oil in a saucepan and add mustard seeds and cumin seeds. When mustard seeds start to pop, add curry leaves, asafoetida and onion. Fry onion until translucent.
* Next add amti masala, turmeric, salt, chilli powder and fry for a few seconds.
* Then add the cooked dal, tamarind, jaggery and enough water to reach the desired consistency. Stir well, taste and adjust the flavors to your taste. Simmer for 5 minutes and turn off the stove. Garnish with cilantro if desired.
Serve amti with steamed hot rice and a dollop of ghee.
Check what other marathoners are cooking during this month long marathon.