Flavours of South India

Sandhya Vasudeva infuses her food with love, thoughtfulness and delectable flavour. Her home-based restaurant serves some of the best sattvic food in Mysore.

Mysore is the mecca of Ashtanga yoga and if you’ve been a regular practitioner, you’ve probably heard of Sandhya’s. This home-restaurant is run out of Sandhya Vasudeva’s home and it’s not a typical restaurant in any way. You can’t just show up for lunch or dinner. You have to book in advance, and food is only served to small groups of 8 to 10 people. 

Traditional coconut grater at Sandhya’s.

Sandhya is as much of an institution in Mysore as some of the famous yoga gurus that gave the city it’s yogic heritage. She has been cooking sattvic food for visiting yogis since 1998. She’s always been exposed to yoga and Ayurveda, her grandfather was a doctor of Ayurveda, and her food is especially made to enhance the yogic lifestyle. After cooking for yogis for over two decades, Sandhya has now passed the baton to her son, Kiran Salunke. He assists his mother and is training to carry forward her precious recipes and their family’s culinary legacy.

For a taste of Sandhya’s kitchen, try the recipes below. 

Flavors of South India

1. Cucumber Salad

Ingredients (Serves two)

  • 1 large cucumber peeled and sliced thinly
  • Sprouted mung dal: 2 tbsp
  • Grated fresh coconut: 2 tbsp
  • Fresh coriander chopped: 1 tbsp
  • Pomegranate seeds: 2 tbsp
  • Juice of one lime
  • Salt to taste

Ingredients for tempering

  • Sunflower Oil: 2 tsp
  • Black mustard seeds: 1 tsp
  • A pinch of asafoetida powder

Method

Wash, peel, and finely slice the cucumber. Set aside. Prepare the tempering by heating the oil in a small pan over moderate flame. Add the mustard seeds and once they start to splutter, lower the flame and add the asafoetida. Remove from flame and set aside to cool. 

In a serving bowl, mix the chopped cucumber, sprouted mung dal, grated coconut, pomegranate seeds and coriander. Mix well and add salt to taste. Lastly, pour the tempered seasoning over the mixture, add the lime juice, toss well and serve. 

2. Tomato Gojju

Ingredients (Serves four)

  • Tomatoes finely chopped: 500 gms
  • Green capsicum chopped: 2 tbsp
  • Curry leaves: 8 – 10
  • Sambar powder: 2 tsp
  • Turmeric powder: 1/2 tsp
  • Jaggery: 2 tsp
  • Grated fresh coconut: 1 tbsp
  • Coriander finely chopped: 1 tbsp

Ingredients for tempering

  • Sunflower oil: 1 tbsp
  • Black mustard seeds: 1/2 tsp
  • Bengal gram dal: 1 tsp
  • Black gram dal: 1 tsp
  • Cumin seeds: 1 tsp
  • A pinch of asafoetida powder

Method

Prepare the tempering. Heat oil in a heavy-bottomed pan on low flame. Add the mustard seeds and when they start to splutter, add the Bengal gram dal and black gram dal. Stir and fry until the dal turns golden brown. Then add the cumin seeds and asafoetida. Stir for a few seconds and then add the capsicum and curry leaves and fry for a few seconds. Then add the sambar powder, turmeric, and tomatoes. Lastly, add the salt and jaggery and mix well. Cook the mixture for 10 minutes stirring it occasionally. 

Then add the coconut and coriander and mix well again. Cook for a few more minutes. Transfer the mix to a serving bowl and serve topped with coriander. It tastes best with rice or rotis. 

For reservations call +91 99012 67189.

March 5, 2020
Photos Simon Meier

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