08/21/2010 Sambaar with Chef Ambika - Sambar

Chef:Chef Ambrika - Sambar
Menu: Sambaar
Pictures: Click here

Sambaar is one of the most loved dishes in South Indian cuisine. It is a vegetable stew based on a broth made with tamarind and lentils.

Quantity:   4  servings
Preparation Time:  15 minutes
Cooking Time:  30 minutes


1 lime sized ball Tamarind

1.5 cups Toor Dal (or red lentils)
1 teaspoon Turmeric Powder
5 teaspoons oil
Salt to taste
5 small dry red chilies (optional)
A few Curry Leaves
1 teaspoon mustard seeds

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1/2 tsp asafoetida (optional)

1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds

4 large tomatoes
4 tablespoons sambar powder (that you can purchase from Indian store)
1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves (also known as coriander leaves) 

Vegetables of your choice – Green peppers

Ingredients for Sambaar Powder
Coriander seeds - 1 table spoon
Chana dal - 1 tea spoon
Urad dal -1/2 tea spoon
Cumin seeds - 1 tea spoon
Asafetida - 1/4 tea spoon
Red chillis - 2 to 4, according to taste
Black pepper - 1/4 tea spoon
Mustard seeds - 1/4 tea spoon
Methi(fenugreek) seeds - 1/4 tea spoon
Roast the sambar powder ingredients on low flame. Grind to fine powder.

Cooking Instructions

Before we begin pre soak the tamarind in warm water for 15 minutes to get pulp using 1 cup of water.
Cook Toor dal in 4 cups of water till it is soft.
In a deep pan, heat the oil.
Add mustard, when they stop crackling, add cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, asafoetida and turmeric powder, curry leaves.
Add green peppers and fry them a little followed by the tomatoes and stir for a few minutes.
Add 1 cup water and cook till the vegetables are tender.
Add ground sambar powder and bring to a boil.
Mash the cooked dal. Add to the mixture.
Boil for 5 minutes. Add the tamarind pulp and salt to taste.
Stir and add more water if needed.
Boil for about 5 minutes.
Add chopped coriander leaves and serve.

Plate Served

Group Picture

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