Hurali saaru | horse gram sambar step-by-step recipe with photos.
About this recipe
Hurali saaru is a delicious and healthy protein-rich sambar made with horse gram. This simple and nutritious sambar is made using a coconut-spice masala base. Horse gram is usually sprouted before cooked, increasing its health benefits many folds. However, you can also make this dish without sprouting them. Spicy, rich, and packed with flavours, this horse gram sambar can be paired with both plain steamed rice and roti/chapati.
This unique, rustic dish is something you will not find in any restaurant. Read on to see how to sprout horse gram, ingredients to make the saaru, and step-by-step instructions.
Horsegram and its benefits
Horse gram, also known as Macrotyloma Uniflorum, is a type of legume that is native to southern Asia. This lesser-known legume is called hurali in Kannada, kulith in Hindi, kollu in tamil, ulavu in Telugu, hulaga in Marathi, gahat in Nepali. Gahat or kulath is extensively used in the Pahari region of North India. It is particularly used in winter as horse gram has heat-producing properties. It has a dry, hard texture and is often sprouted before cooking. It has a distinctive taste, aroma and is a part of ancient Ayurvedic medicine. These days, horse gram is gaining popularity and is available in health stores.
Apart from being a good source of plant-based protein and fiber, it is rich in many key nutrients including iron, vitamin C, and phosphorus. It also helps control blood sugar levels and aids weight management. Horse gram has a low glycemic index, keeping you full for longer.
Horse gram: Or hurali, this is the main ingredient.
Moong dal: I use a small amount of moong dal (yellow lentils). It can be replaced with toor dal (pigeon pea lentils) or can be skipped.
Masala paste: The masala paste is made using coriander stem, coconut, onion, garlic, tomatoes, and sambar powder.
Sambar powder: I use homemade sambar powder to make this dish.
Tamarind: Tamarind is soaked in water and tamarind juice is extracted.
Step by step instructions
Making the sprouts:
Wash the horse gram thoroughly and soak in water for 6-8 hours (step 1).
Drain the water completely and tie it in a muslin or cheesecloth for 12 hours. Place it in a warm and dark spot for one day (steps 2,3).
The horse gram will germinate and have sprouts (step 4).
Making hurali saaru:
Grind together coconut, coriander stem, 1 small onion, garlic, 1 small tomato, and sambar powder using some water. Set it aside (steps 5,6).
Heat oil in a kadhai or pan and add mustard seeds. Once they splutter, add cumin seeds, curry leaves, and hing (step 7).
Add one small onion and saute until it is translucent (step 8).
Add sprouted horse gram and saute for 3-4 minutes (steps 9,10).
Add the ground masala, moong dal, one small tomato, green chilli, salt, and tamarind extract (steps 11,12).
Add 5 cups water and mix well. Bring to a boil and let it simmer (steps 13,14).
Cook until the horse gram is fully cooked. Alternatively, pressure cook for 4 whistles (step 15).
Turn off the heat and add coriander leaves (step 16).
Sprouting horse gram increases its health benefits many folds. However, it is purely optional and you can use soaked horse gram. It is, however, important to soak the horse gram overnight before cooking.
Horse gram germinates pretty quickly and has sprouts within a day. So if you are planning ahead, it is best to sprout them.
Since I use sprouted horse gram, it cooks relatively quickly when compared to unsprouted ones. Adjust the cooking time accordingly.
This dish can be made either by simmering directly in a kadhai or using a pressure cooker. If you cook it in kadhai, it will take 40-45 minutes. If using a pressure cooker, follow this recipe and cook for 4 whistles.
Any leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to five days. It also freezes well and can be stored in the freezer for up to three months.
Horse gram is available in most grocery stores within India. Outside of India, you can buy them in Indian or Sri Lankan grocery stores. They are also available in the health section of some supermarkets and online health/organic stores.
This dish is:
- very healthy, filling, and nutritious
- gluten-free and vegan
- good source of plant-based protein
Hurali Saaru | Horse Gram Sambar
- 1½ cups horse gram
- 1 big piece tamarind
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 8-10 curry leaves
- A small pinch hing
- 1 small onion chopped
- 1 green chilli slit
- 1 small tomato chopped
- ¼ cup moong dal (yellow lentils)
- Salt to taste
- 1 tablespoon coriander leaves
For masala base
- ½ cup coconut fresh or frozen
- ¼ cup coriander stem
- 2 tablespoon sambar powder
- 1 small onion roughly chopped
- 1-2 cloves garlic
- 1 small tomato roughly chopped
Making horse gram sprouts (optional step)
- Wash the horse gram thoroughly and soak it in water for 6-8 hours
- Drain the water completely and tie it in a muslin or cheesecloth for 12 hours. Place it in a warm and dark spot for one day
- The next day, horse gram will germinate and have sprouts
- This is an optional step and can be skipped. If you are not sprouting them, just soak the horse gram for a few hours before making the sambar
Making horse gram saaru
- Soak the tamarind in water for 15 minutes. Extract the tamarind juice and discard the pulp. Set aside
- Grind together coconut, coriander stem, 1 small onion, garlic, 1 small tomato, and sambar powder using some water. Set aside
- Heat oil in a kadhai or pan and add mustard seeds
- Once they splutter, add cumin seeds, curry leaves, and hing.
- Add one small onion and saute for 3-4 minutes or until they are translucent
- Add sprouted horse gram and saute for 3-4 minutes
- Add the ground masala, moong dal, salt, tamarind extract, and one small tomato
- Add 5 cups water and mix well. Bring to a boil and let it simmer
- Cook until the horse gram is fully cooked. Alternatively, pressure cook for 4 whistles
- Turn off the heat and add coriander leaves
- Serve hot with rice or roti
Click here to watch horse gram sambar web story.