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Drumstick spinach Sambar – Solitude Café Special

Moringa is the nutritional foundation of Tamil culture and this beautiful tree is found in almost every home in Tamil nadu. Drumstick leaves which we call Murungai keerai in Tamil and also known as Drumstick spinach are the delicate leaves of the drumstick trees! And yes, they are edible! There are so many diverse ways of consuming these yummy leaves every day. You can have it in the form of podi (dry powder chutney), as stir fries or even bhajji. They are delicious and super nutritious.

Drumstick spinach Sambar – Solitude Café Special

In Solitude we love making Murungai keerai sambar and here is our recipe:

  • Take 1 cup toor dal and half a cup moong dal and pressure cook them until very soft
  • In a wok add a tablespoon mustard oil, some mustard seeds, crushed asafoetida (hing), crushed garlic, dried red chilli, chopped onion and curry leaves and let them all fry and cook in the oilDrumstick spinach Sambar – Solitude Café Special
  • Once the mix has turned a bit golden add chopped tomato, coriander powder, turmeric powder, salt, and tamarind pulp to the mix and stir well
  • Add a cup of water to the wok and let it all cook well for 3-4 minutes. Once the tomatoes turn soft add the cooked daal mix to the wok
  • Add water to reach the desired consistency and cook some more
  • Now add about 300gms of drumstick leaves in the sambar and cook it for not more than 2 min. This will keep the leaves from overcooking
  • Garnish with some coriander leaves

This is a traditional recipe, made of local ingredients with a great taste. It’s the best way to introduce moringa to our children with iron,folic acid, all essential amino acids and fatty acids. It is a veritable super food.In fact the village elders advise us to consume Murungai keerai at least once a week and as it grows everywhere, in abundance, this is really easy to do! With this recipe we hope to remind you of the amazing nutritional values of our cultural heritage.

Can you imagine a generation of children growing up eating drumstick spinach as part of their school meals? Not only would these kids have better nutrition but also they would share a basic common value that defines their cultural identity.

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