Sambar is a popular and quintessential dish of South Indian cuisine, enjoyed by people across the country and abroad. It is a delicious and nutritious lentil soup made with a variety of vegetables, aromatic spices and tamarind extract. Sambhar is a versatile dish that can be eaten with rice, dosa, idli, vada and even with roti. It is a perfect blend of taste and texture that satisfies both your taste buds and your hunger pangs. In this blog post, we will give you a step-by-step guide to make authentic South Indian Sambar at home. We will also discuss the ingredients needed to make sambar, its history and its importance in South Indian cuisine. By the end of this post, you will have all the knowledge and confidence to prepare a delicious bowl of sambar and impress your friends and family. so let’s get started!
Step-by-Step Guide to Making Sambar:
Sambhar is a simple recipe that requires some patience and attention to detail. Here’s a step-by-step guide to making authentic South Indian sambar at home:
Step 1: Preparing the Ingredients
Wash and soak 1/2 cup toor dal in water for 30 minutes.
Cut 1 onion, 2 tomatoes, and some drumsticks, carrots, and beans into medium-sized pieces.
Soak a small lemon-sized tamarind in water for 10 minutes and extract its juice.
2 tbsp whole coriander, 1 tbsp cumin, 1 tbsp fenugreek seeds, 1 tbsp black pepper, 1/2 tbsp mustard seeds, 1/2 tbsp urad dal, 1/2 tbsp chana dal, 3- a pan 4 dry red chilies, and a pinch of asafoetida in it, till the smell comes.
Step 2: The Cooking Process
Roasting and grinding the sambar powder:
Let the roasted spices cool down and grind them coarsely.
Keep the sambar powder aside for later.
Strain the soaked toor dal and put it in the pressure cooker.
Add 2 cups water, 1/2 tsp turmeric powder and 1 tbsp oil in a pressure cooker.
Cook the dal for 4-5 whistles or till the dal becomes soft.
Mash the cooked dal and keep it aside.
Preparing the Vegetables:
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan and fry the onions till they turn translucent.
Add chopped vegetables and fry for 2-3 minutes.
Add 2 cups of water and cook till the vegetables become soft.
Preparation of tamarind water:
Add the extracted tamarind juice to the cooked vegetables and let it come to a boil.
Add 2 tsp salt and let it boil for 5 minutes.
Mixing all ingredients:
Add the mashed daal to the boiling tamarind water and mix well.
Add sambar powder to the mixture and let it boil for 10-15 minutes.
Check seasoning and adjust salt and spices accordingly.
Heat 1 tbsp oil in a small pan and add ½ tbsp mustard seeds.
When the mustard seeds start crackling, add 1/4 tablespoon asafoetida, few curry leaves and 2-3 dry red chilies.
Pour the tempering mixture over the sambar and mix well.
Tips and tricks to get the right consistency and taste of sambar
If the sambar is too thick, add little water to adjust the consistency.
If the sambar is too sour, add a pinch of sugar to balance the taste.
If you like your sambar spicier, add more cayenne pepper or black pepper.
By following these simple steps you can make delicious and authentic South Indian Sambar at home. Enjoy your sambar with hot rice, dosa, idli, or vada and savor the flavors of South India.
Step-by-Step Guide to Making Sambar:
Sambar is a versatile dish that can be paired with many different food items. Here are some serving suggestions and variations to make your sambar experience even more exciting:
Sambar is best enjoyed with steaming hot rice, topped with ghee or ghee. You can also serve it with roti or parantha.
Sambhar can be paired with many South Indian breakfast dishes, such as dosa, idli, vada and uttapam.
For a light meal, sambar can be served as a soup with some crispy breadsticks or crackers.
You can add different vegetables like brinjal, potato, okra or pumpkin to the sambar depending on your preference.
Sambar can also be made with different types of pulses instead of toor dal, like moong dal or masoor dal.
You can add some green vegetables like spinach, kale or fenugreek leaves to make the sambar more nutritious.
For a unique taste, you can add a spoonful of peanut or coconut butter while cooking the sambar.
You can add more red chili, black pepper or green chili to make the sambar more spicy.
finally, sambar is a versatile and delicious dish that can be customized as per your taste and preference. Experiment with different vegetables, pulses and spices to create your perfect sambar. Enjoy this hearty and nutritious dish with your family and friends and make your meals more delicious.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Sambhar:
Question: What is sambar?
A: Sambhar is a lentil based vegetable stew that originated in South India. It is made from toor dal, tamarind and a mixture of aromatic spices.
Question: Is sambar a healthy dish?
Answer: Yes, sambar is a healthy dish as it is rich in protein, fiber and essential nutrients. The lentils in sambar are an excellent source of plant-based protein, while the vegetables add vitamins, minerals and antioxidants to the dish.
Question: Can I make sambar without tamarind?
Answer: Yes, you can make sambar without tamarind also. Instead, you can use lemon juice or amchur to give sourness to the dish.
Question: Can I make sambar without pressure cooker?
Answer: Yes, you can make sambar without pressure cooker. However, it will take more time to cook pulses and vegetables. You can cook the dal in a pot with a lid or use a slow cooker to make the sambar.
Question: Is sambar a vegetarian or vegan dish?
Answer: Yes, Sambar is a vegetarian and vegan dish as it is made from lentils and vegetables and does not contain any animal products.
Q: How long can I store sambar?
Answer: Sambar can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. To reheat, add some water to adjust the consistency and heat it on the stove.
Question: Can I freeze the sambar?
Answer: Yes, you can freeze sambar in an airtight container for 2-3 months. To reheat, refrigerate the sambar overnight and heat on stove with a little water.
Q: What are the traditional spices used in Sambar?
Answer: The traditional spices used in sambar include coriander seeds, cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, black pepper, mustard seeds, urad dal, chana dal, dry red chili and asafoetida.
Question: Can I make sambar spicy?
Answer: Yes, you can make sambar as hot as you like by adding red chillies, black peppercorns, or green chillies. Adjust the spices to your taste preference.
Question: Which vegetables can I add to Sambar?
Answer: You can add a variety of vegetables to sambar, such as drumsticks, carrots, beans, brinjals, potatoes, okra, pumpkin, or spinach, kale, or fenugreek leaves.
We hope this FAQ has answered some of your questions about sambar and helped you understand this delicious South Indian dish. Enjoy making and eating Sambhar!