Sambhar (Lentil Soup)

Sambhar is a popular south indian preparation which is accompanied with Idli, Wada, Rice, Utthapam made up of tuvar dal (Split red gram).


2 cups tuvar dal
4 cups of water
2 1/2 tsp of tamarind pulp
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
2 tbsp sambhar powder (MTR preferred)
2 tbsp dessicated coconut
1 cup chopped mixed vegetables (optional)
3 medium tomatoes
5-6 shallots ( small onions)
1/2 cup fresh cilantro

1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
a pinch of asafoetida
2 whole red chillies
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1 twig of curry leaves


Note : I prepared a simple sambhar without the vegetables. you can add as many vegetables as you want. 

Chop all the vegetables of choice (brinjal, okra, drumsticks, etc). Wash and drain the lentils till the water runs clear. Take a heavy bottomed pan or pressure cooker and add lentils, turmeric powder, 1 tsp of oil and 2 green chillies. Boil the lentils till they turn mushy. In pressure cooker, allow 4 to 5 whistles to get it done. You can also mash the lentils with a heavy ladle to make it mushy. Add the tomatoes and shallots and your choice of vegetables to the lentils and then add salt, red chilli powder, Sambhar powder (For best results, grind 2 tbsp of sambhar powder with  2 tbsp dessicated coconut) and tamarind. Wait for 2 more whistles. Temper the dal mixture and add fresh cilantro as garnish.

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