This Indian dish made up of two things, vegetable soup and the tempering of the actual sambar has a lot of ingredients yet has been said to be a “simple to prepare” dish irrespective of the numerous ingredients.
Coming from India, one might not be too familiar with some of the ingredients if he or she is not of Indian descent. It is suggested that alternatives are found in such a case, for example, with the peas, any kind of preferred beans can be used.
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- (1 cup = 240ml )
- ¾ cup pigeon peas
- 1 to 2 tablespoon tamarind paste as needed
- ¼ cup Coriander leaves few with tender stalks – chopped
- salt as needed
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric (skip if your sambar powder has it)
- 12 to 15 shallots (or small onions) or 1 medium onion sliced
- 1 to 2 vegetable drumsticks (or morning)
- 2 to 3 Ladies finger (or okra, bhindi)
- 3 to 4 cubed red pumpkin pieces (optional)
- 1 green chilli slit (optional)
- 1 medium tomato chopped
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 sprig curry leaves
- ½ teaspoon cumin (or jeera)
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 Pinch methi seeds or fenugreek seeds
- 2 pinches asafoetida or thing
- 1 Red chilli broken (less spicy variety)
- Wash the peas neatly several times, if possible under running water.
- Put water on the fire and allow it to boil, if you are using a cooker, listen to the pressure for two whistles of vapour.
- Wash all the vegetables very well, scraping the drumsticks nicely and chopping them into two inches per piece.
- Okra, tomatoes and all others should be chopped nicely before you begin.
How to make sambar
- First, boil your vegetables in not more than five cups of water. Keep the fire at medium and keep checking to ensure they are soft and in shape. Some prefer to sauté the veggies, that is also alright.
- Once the veggies begin to boil, use a ladle to get about half the ladle and use it to soak the tamarind in another bowl.
- Once the veggies are well boiled, set them aside and boil the peas keep the heat at medium and ensure it is well boiled.
- Add your Sambhar powder and turmeric to the vegetables with salt to taste and cook again for three to five minutes.
- Now mash the peas to become very smooth in another bowl and set it aside.
- After mashing the peas, add some water and mix it very well and boil the mixture. Taste the salt to your preference.
- If the salt is okay for you, you can now add the coriander leaves and stir it.
Your sambar is ready!
- With another pan, get oil into it and turn on the fire to medium, then put in your mustard, methi and cumin, after 2 – 3 mins, add your broken red chillies and curry leaves.
- Once the leaves are crispy, put off the fire and add the hing, you can add just about a quarter teaspoon of the sambar powder.
- Now let out the seasoning you have just prepared into the sambar and stir well. Cook it well for the sambar to become flavourful
- It is suggested to usually add two or three ladles of the sambar to the pan in which the tempering is taking place to generate aroma.
You can now pour your tempering onto the samber as you serve. It is best enjoyed with Dosa, Rice or Idli.