Monday, September 12, 2011


How to make Sambar

This is one of those recipes which seem very easy but result vary each time you make it. There are just uncountable ways you can make this dish. This liquidy curry like recipe originated from southern part of India. I have tried it so many ways myself but each time I felt there is something missing until I ate it a few weeks ago. A very close friend of mine was visiting me here and the breakfast menu was Idli, sambar & chuteny. Avanti - My friend said I will make sambar and I was so relieved and happy. Relieved cause I was not very happy with my sambar recipe and happy cause I was gonna get a recipe. So with her supervision the sambar was cooked in the kitchen .. and guess it was what I always looked for in sambar. Just the way I LOVE!! I am sharing the same recipe with you ..

Here is what we need -

  • 1/2 cup toor daal
  • 1 tomato
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 small potato
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 small brown eggplant
  • 7-8 drumsticks
  • curry leaves
  • 2 green chilies
  • 1 spoon mustard seeds
  • 1 spoon cumin seeds
  • pinch of asafetida and turmeric
  • 2 tbs oil
  • 1 lemon size ball of tamarind
  • 2 spoons sambar masala (My choice is Everest)

Whats Next -

Soak tamarind in hot water for 30 minutes. Pressure cook toor daal for 3 whistles or until its well cooked. I usually cook drumsticks with toor daal.

Cut onion lenght wise, tomato in bite size pieces , potato in cubes , eggplant in cubes and green chilies in small pieces. I like bottle ground (Lauki) too in my sambar but it was not available. You can add 1/4 green pepper too if you like.

In a heavy bottom pan, add oil. Once hot add mustard seeds. In a few seconds they start to splutter immediately add cumin seeds. Add green chilies and curry leaves. Add onion Add turmeric and asafetida. Add salt. Give it a good stir. The onion starts to become translucent. Add potato as its takes longer time to cook. Cover it for 5 minutes. Add tomato and eggplant. Add a little water and cover it for 4-5 minutes. open the lid and put sambar masala. Give it a mix. Pour 2 cups of water.

Squeeze out the juice from the tamarind. Add it to the pan. Let it boil for 10-15 minutes.

Use ladle to mash daal. If its cooked properly mashing is a seconds task. I don't like to see daal texture in the sambar. add in drumsticks and daal. Let it simmer for another 5-7 minutes. At this point add more water. It really depends how thick or thin sambar you like to eat. keep it a little watery as that way it tastes so delicious.



  1. Thanks for visiting my blog and for your kind words, Amrita :) The Sambar looks tempting!Cooking Sambar is an essential skill for South-Indians. Very useful post! Thanks for sharing the wonderful recipe.

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