Kosambari is a super healthy South Indian side dish that usually uses a raw vegetable (such as cucumber/carrot) and a lentil (moong or chana daal) as it’s main ingredients. It is that crunchy and perfect balance of salt, sour and spice often coming from lemon juice and slit green chillies. Try this unconventional version without the lentil, but with plenty of colored vegetables ( loaded with the much hyped about anti-oxidants), corn for the crunch, pepper for the spice, raw mango for the sour and yes, to a add a twist, pomegranate kernels for sweet! The secret to the whole recipe is chopping all the veggies as tiny and uniform as you can. Considering how healthy and tasty it is, you won’t guilt yourself going for the seconds on this one.
Red, yellow and orange peppers – Finely evenly chopped to corn kernel size
Corn- 1 cup ( Thaw the frozen corn for an hour)
Pomegranate kernels – 1 cup
Raw mango – ½ cup finely chopped
Cilantro, shredded coconut , mustard seeds and oil for garnishing ( optional)
Salt to taste
Fresh ground pepper powder ½ tbsp.
Toss in all the diced veggies, pomegranate seeds, corn and cilantro in a mixing bowl. Splutter ½ tbsp of mustard seeds in ½ tbsp. of oil, Add salt, pepper powder and additional fresh lemon juice if needed. Enjoy your full week’s worth of antioxidants!!
As cliched as it may sound, I am hooked onto the food network channel. A few stolen moments away from my son, my go-to channel is the food network. I watch all shows on the food network even if the recipe is not vegetarian! One of my favorites is the show Barefoot Contessa by Ina Garten. She makes everything sound easy. Especially with per precise measurement of ingredients, one can hardly go wrong! Today’s recipe is sourced from the food network site. I can go and ahead and just link her recipe here but I will include it here for convenience! This makes an excellent starter especially for large groups of people.
Ingredients : Serves 6-8
Recipe Courtesy : The Barefoot Contessa
2 medium eggplants
1 large onion
1 red bell pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 and 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoon tahini sauce
Juice of half a lemon
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper ( I substituted regular chili powder)
3 tablespoon chopped parsely ( Can be substituted with cilantro)
1 big clove of garlic
Peel and chop the egg-plant into 1 inch cubes. Chop the onion and bell pepper into 1 inch cubes. In a large bowl, add the vegetables, olive oil, salt, pepper, crushed garlic and chili powder and toss well till all the veggies are coated.
In an oven preheated to 400 F, roast for 35-40 minutes occasionally tossing the veggies around. Once the veggies are soft and are brown in color, pulse it in a food processor or a blender along with the tahini and lemon juice. Adjust salt and pepper. Add the parsley and mix well.
Serve with pita chips.
What color is your food? Mine’s multi color, just like a rainbow today:)
Heard on NPR yesterday about a study that showed that women who ate colored fruits and vegetables had a lower risk of heart disease as pigmented fruits and vegetables are rich in phytochemicals and anti oxidants. That was inspiration enough to chop up those tri colored peppers that were sitting in my refrigerator, toss it in with some spring mix, red onions, baby carrots and cherry tomatoes. Also threw in some almonds to add a nutty taste and dried cranberries to give a hint of sweet/tanginess. You can dress it up with some rice vinegar, EVOO and fresh ground pepper and drizzle some shredded mozzarella over it!.
This is one easy peasy recipe! I love to use all the different colored bell peppers. In Indian cooking there is not much scope for using these raw. Cooking them renders the dishes rather sweet so you can’t use them in large quantities. One way of using these is to make a nice, cool and soothing raita. I use bell peppers of all colors, green, red, yellow and orange.
1 of each bell pepper – orange, red, yellow and green.
2 green chillies split length wise
A handful of chopped coriander
2 cups thick yogurt.
Cut the bell peppers into small pieces. If you dont like the raw flavor especially of the green peppers, you can microwave them for a minute or two. Let it cool before mixing all the ingredients. Easy peasy!
Variations : If you want a slightly sweet tone, add pomegranate seeds, candied cherries or green grapes.