In traditional Indian cooking, salads are simple affairs usually featuring raw vegetables such as carrots, cucumbers, tomatoes and onions sliced and arranged on a plate and drizzled with lemon juice. However "Carrot Kosmari" kicks it up a notch. It is typically made in Tamil cooking to go with "Thogayals" and "kozhambus" to provide a sweet contrast to the strong tastes. (More on thogayal and kozhambu in later posts!) It is easy to make, looks pretty and is healthy to boot. So here's the recipe for carrot kosmari.
2 large carrots
1/2 cup lentils - payatham paruppu (called moong dal in Hindi)
juice of half a lime/lemon
salt to taste
3-4 green chilies slit
1 tsp oil, 1/2 tsp mustard seeds and a pinch perungaayam (hing) for tempering
chopped cilantro for garnish
1. Soak the lentils (paruppu) in warm water for 1/2 hour. Drain. It will be soft enough to munch on. It will get softer with the juices in the carrot.
2. Grate the carrot
3. Mix the carrot, paruppu, salt and lime/lemon juice
4. Heat the oil. Add the mustard seeds. When they start sputtering, add the perungaayam and green chilies, and switch off heat.
5. Add the tempering to the salad and mix
6. Garnish with freshly chopped cilantro
Enjoy with your Tamil meal! Chandra Padmanabhan's Dakshin is a great resource for preparing a Tamil meal.
I am submitted this recipe to the Vegetarian Thankgiving Recipe Carnival where you can get more ideas!!