Butternut Squash Sambar
I REALLY enjoy hearty and creamy soups. This healthy keto friendly Indian flavored soup (sambar) is going to trick your tastebuds like no other and can be enjoyed all year long. Perfect for diabetics, because there is zero addition of sugars! With that said, I’m going to be very honest here and tell you that butternut squash is not on my grocery list-EVER. No joke! I actually only use to buy it to make baby food. So 3 years ago, I tried to make sambar with this beautiful squash. The idea came to me when I saw the puree and thought I should try to make sambar with it. AND guess what? IT WAS PERFECT! We’ve been eating it since.
WHAT IS SAMBAR? Sambar is a dish that is very popular in India. It’s actually considered a fancy daily meal and is very filling (to a point where you might get the ‘itis). It is enjoyed with rice, roti, dosa, bhati, and idli. The traditional recipe is made with toovar daal which is dried split pigeon peas. Everyone has their own way of prepping it; some add garam/sambar masala, star anise, vegetables, or even fenugreek seeds. All variations taste great and most likely consist of sugar.
You can add big or small chunks of vegetables to this mixture (especially for Idli Sambar). Try a variation of the following:
- sweet potato
Personally, I am not a big fan of eating lentils or legumes which is where this idea came to me in the first place. It has replaced my sambar cravings with dosa and I even prefer it as a soup! Plus, my dad is diabetic and I would tweak anything to make his comfort food taste as close to the real thing as possible. Daddy’s Girl for life! Want to know what’s even better? It takes half the time to prepare compared to lentils!!! Hope you all enjoy it just as much as my husband and I do.
Happy eating, Folks!
A healthy twist on sambar made with 100% butternut squash as a base.
- 4 cups butternut squash, steamed and pureed
- 4 cups water
- 1 tbsp dry coriander powder
- 1/2 tbsp turmeric
- 1 tsp fresh grated ginger
- 1 tsp oil
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
- 1/2 tsp hing (asafaetido)
- 1 tbsp finely chopped/crushed raw peanuts (optional)
- 1 tbsp shredded coconut (optional)
- 1/2 fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 5 curry leaves (optional)
- 3 whole dried red chili peppers (optional)
- chopped cilantro for garnishment
- red chili powder
- OPTIONAL: sambar masala
- OPTIONAL: A variation of steamed/sauteed vegetables (peas, carrots, potatoes, drumsticks, onions, zuchinni, etc)
Place a pot on the stove top with medium heat.
Pour the butternut squash and water into the pot.
Add steamed/sauteed vegetables, ginger, dry coriander powder, turmeric, salt, red chili powder, lemon juice, curry leaves, sambar masala, coconut, and peanuts. Bring the contents to a boil.
While the soup heats, prepare the tempered oil. In an XSmall pan heat some oil. Then add the mustard & cumin seeds and wait for them to pop.
Immediately add hing (asafaetido) and whole dried red chili peppers.
Pour the tempered oil in the butternut squash soup pot as soon as the chili peppers have cooked for a few seconds. (NOTE: work very quick with the tempered oil to prevent ingredients from excessive browning)
Let the soup boil for another 2-3 minutes and serve.
Enjoy as a replacement for sambar, daar/daal, or a soup.
Happy Eating, Folks <3!
TO SAVE DISHES:
I steam the butternut squash in an Instant Pot. I puree with a hand blender and then set the pot to saute mode while continuing on with the recipe.
In one small pot I sautee/steam vegetables first and then do the tempered oil after a quick paper towel sweep.