Ambal is a traditional dish of Jammu in India probably originating in the reign of the Dogra dynasty. It utilises basic pantry ingredients and has a simplistic style of making. Additionally, it does not use any garlic or onion. So it is perfect for Indian festivals such as Navratri when some Hindus do not prefer to consume these root veggies.
Ambal uses chunky pumpkin bits and has a very light texture on the palate with being both sweet and savoury on the flavour profile. This recipe is again an extremely easy-to-make dish and perfect for a light meal with some phulkas or plain boiled rice. So go ahead and try this exquisite yet simple dish!

Serves 2-3
300g pumpkin, diced
2 tbsp mustard oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp fenugreek seeds
2-3 dry Kashmiri red chillies
2 tbsp finely chopped ginger
1 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
1 tbsp jaggery
1 tbsp tamarind pulp
Salt to taste
Coriander leaves to garnish

Step 1: In a pan, heat mustard oil. Add cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds and dry Kashmiri red chillies. Allow to crackle.
Step 2: Add chopped ginger. Sauté well. Lower the flame, add the turmeric powder, red chilli powder and salt. Toss well. Immediately add the diced pumpkin and mix. Cover and cook on low flame for 10-15 minutes till the pumpkin reaches the point of breakdown.
Step 3: Add jaggery and tamarind pulp. Add about 1/2 cup water for a little consistency. Cover and cook for another 5-10 minutes. Check and adjust the seasoning and sourness/sweetness as per your preference. It should be a balance of both.
Step 4: Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot!

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