Living in Consciousness ~ Indi(r)a’s Food and Garden Weblog

Chana Dal~Amaranth Curry from Nandyala

Sanagaballa Thotakura :

Fresh Amaranth Leaves (Red Spinach, Thotakura)

Regional Cuisines of India (RCI), a fresh food blogging event is started by Lakshmik of Veggie Cuisine last month. I loved this event idea very much. Great opportunity for those of us who would like to move away from restaurant created regional cuisine constraints. For example, stereotypes always associate dosa, sambar, green beans-coconut curry/poriyal and laddus with South India. The four southern sister states of India, share these. They are the Kohinoors, I agree but explore further, the chance to write/learn about the khajana of gems that sustain individual home plates are plenty. Certain recipes are much hard to find than others and that location is different for every enthusiast. You never quite know where you will find that great regional gem recipe that speaks to you. That’s why I am attracted to this concept very much. For this month, RCI is celebrating Andhra Cuisine and is hosted by lovely Latha of Masala Magic.

Although I am from Andhra Pradesh, India, I don’t dare to speak for all Andhra vasi. What can I do is to share my family recipes from Nandyala. My mother and father, my in-laws, they are all from this town and surrounding villages. The relations we have in this town go back at least 4 generations. The roots are deep. Nandyala may be a tiny town in Andhra but it sparkles like an electric dream at my blog, Mahanandi. Vijay and I are the first ones in the family who moved so far away from Nandyala. I think, that explains why the pull is so strong for us.

RCI provides me another chance to share Nandyala bounty. One special recipe is Chana dal-Amaranth Curry. The ingredients are all from around here (Seattle), but the method is from Nandyala. Fresh amaranth leaves and chana dal saut�ed with onions, grated coconut and green chillies make a deeply satisfying curry that tastes great with sorghum roti or with chapatis. Very tasty, very much Nandyala! Another must try for amaranth fans.

Chopped Amaranth Leaves and Chana Dal (Pre soaked in water)


I bunch fresh amaranth – washed and finely chopped, about 2 quarts
Half cup chana dal – soaked in water for about 2 hours
1 jumbo red onion – finely chopped
2 tablespoons of coconut and 5 green chillies – grind to smooth

Popu or tadka ingredients –
1 tablespoon peanut oil
¼ teaspoon minced garlic, cumin and mustard seeds

Heat oil in a wide skillet. Add and toast garlic, cumin and mustard seeds.

Add and saute onion and chana dal on medium heat for about 5 minutes. Onions become soft and chana dal turns to crisp.

At this stage, stir in the chopped amaranth leaves, along with coconut-green chilli paste, turmeric. Mix once and cook on medium-high, covered for couple of minutes until the leaves wilt. Increase the heat. Remove the lid and cook another couple of minutes until the water evaporates from the skillet. Sprinkle salt in the end, mix and serve hot.

The soft nutty chana dal plus potent amaranth makes a great combination and tastes quite good when eaten with sorghum roti or with chapatis.

Sanagaballa Thotakura with Chapati (Chana Dal Amaranth Curry with Chapati)
~ A recipe from Nandyala to Latha’s RCI Andhra Cuisine Event

Recipe Source: Amma

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Amma & Authentic Andhra,Chana Dal,Thotakura (Amaranth) (Tuesday May 8, 2007 at 10:37 pm- permalink)
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