Sambhar Powder

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Sambhar is a very common dish in the South made using Toovar Dal, Tamarin and Sambhar powder along with few vegetables.

The very name brings in a lot of memories. My husband always compares the Sāmbhar that I make to what is made at his place in India. I believe there is a difference. My Mom makes very good “Vendakai (Lady’s Finger/Okra) Sambhar” .

I think in any place the taste of Sambhar is completely dependent on the key ingredient used which is the Sambhar powder. Let me share my aunt's recipe here,who indeed is a great cook.Don’t get amused with the quantity mentioned below, Sambhar powders are always made in abundance and used as and when required.The round red chilies that we get is called the “Gundu Milagai” in tamil. The measurement varies if the long ones are used.

Ingredients :

Red Chillies(round) – 1kg
Dhaniya (Coriander Seeds)– 1/2 kg
Toovar Dal (Pigeon Peas)– 200gm
Methi (Fenugreek seeds)– 50gm
Channa Dal(Split chick peas) – 50gm
Black Pepper – 50gm
Turmeric – 50gm (This is the thick turmeric that we get in the Indian Stores, turmeric powder is obtained from this)

1.Saute each ingredient separately in a dry kadai. (Saute till the raw smell disappears)
2.Cool it and make a fine powder.

For best results, Grind the Red Chillies and the rest of the ingredients separately and add them as per the ratio below.

Mix 4 cups of red chili powder and 2 cups of the other mixture and store the rest. Keep mixing the remaining ingredients as and when required.

My Aunt uses this method and she says that this tastes better. However, it is easy to grind all the ingredients together.Ensure that it's kept in a air tight container always.

If long Red Chillies are used :-

Red Chillies(long) – 1/2 kg
Dhaniya (Coriander Seeds)– 1/4 kg
Toovar Dal (Pigeon Peas)– 100gm
Methi (Fenugreek seeds)– 25gm
Channa Dal(Split chick peas) – 25gm
Black Pepper – 25gm
Turmeric – 25gm (This is the thick turmeric that we get in the Indian Stores, turmeric powder is obtained from this)

Note - The taste of this powder completely depends on how well the ingredients are sauted.


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