Any sambar or kuzhambu in South India is usually prepared with tamarind, but drumstick leaves sambar is prepared without tamarind. It is a Tirunelveli-special flavorful nutritious curry popularly known as puli illa curry (no-tamarind curry) or murungai keerai sambar.
Health Benefits: Drumstick leaves are rich in iron and are useful to increase hemoglobin count. If this curry is taken frequently by anemic women and children, they will surely see significant improvement in their health. Drumstick leaves act as laxative and hence care must be taken while serving this to kids or old people; one should gradually increase its in-take especially the first timers.
My mother used to add brinjal, drumsticks, shallots along with drumstick leaves. But here I use drumsticks alone as I prepare in small quantity.
Cooking Time : 30 min
Serves : 4
- Green gram (paasi paruppu) – 1/2 cup (100 g)
- Drumstick leaves (murungai keerai) – a handful
- Drumsticks (murungai kai) – 2 Nos
- Coconut – 4 pieces
- Shallots (chinna vengayam) – 10 Nos.
- Peppercorns (milagu) – 1 tsp
- Cumins (jeeragam) – 1/2 tsp
- Fenugreek (vendhayam) – 1/4 tsp
- Chilli powder – 1 tsp
- Sambar powder – 1 tsp
- Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
- Asafoetida (kayam/ hing) – 1/4 tsp
- Oil – 1 tbsp
- Salt – 1 tsp
- Separate drumstick leaves from its stem and wash them.
- Pressure cook greengram (simmer for 5 min after whistle) and keep aside.
- Grind coconut, pepper, cumins & shallots into a fine paste.
- Heat a heavy bottom pan with oil, add fenugreek, drumsticks followed by water.
- Add turmeric powder & chilli powder and bring it to a boil.
- When drumsticks are half-cooked, add drumstick leaves & sambar powder.
- Add cooked greengram when drumsticks’ seeds become soft.
- Add salt & hing, mix them well.
- Add coconut paste and cook for a min.
- Drumstick leaves curry is ready to serve.
- Do not use yellow-colored drumstick leaves.
- I always like to add sambar powder just before final boil to enhance its flavor.
- Pepper elevates its taste & drumstick leaves its flavor.
- If you dont want it spicy you can reduce chilli powder to half, but not pepper.