Vendekka Sambar & Quick Sambar Powder/ Okra stewed with lentils and mild spices

Sambar  is one of my favorite dal preparation and it is cooked in all south indian homes  almost regularly and served with  idli(steamed rice and lentil cake) for breakfast or with rice for lunch . Sambar can be enjoyed like a soup too. Any vegetable can be  used  for sambar but some vegetables which works really well and gives the soup a unique taste are drumstick, radish,okra and pearl onions. I prepared this okra sambar and though of documenting it.

Sometimes when i don't have sambar powder on hand i whip up a quick version  and works really well. It may not replace the real sambar powder in your pantry but hey a tasty shortcut on hand never hurts :)

Simple Sambar Powder :
Coriander Powder -2 tbsp
Chilli Powder -1 tbsp
Tumeric Powder -1/2 tsp
Fenugreek Powder -1/2 tsp
Hing -1/4 tsp

Sambar Recipe
For Step 1:
Thuvar Dal/ Split Pegion Pea  - 1/4 cup
Tumeric - 1/4 tsp
Tamarind  - small ball soaked in hot water , then mash to extract the liquid.

Tomato (canned) - 1/2 cup, mashed
Sambar Pw - 2 tsp

For Step 2 :
Onion - 1/4 cup  sliced thin 
Okra  - 1/4 cup chunky pieces
Mustatrd -1/2 tsp
Curry leaves -3-4
Dry Red Chilli - 2
Ghee -1 tsp
Oil -1 tsp

Step 1: 
1. Cook  dal ,turmeric in 11/2 cup of water . 
2. If using pressure cooker  cook for for 2-3 whistles.
3. Mash the dal well and keep back on fire.
4. Add sambar masala , salt to taste to the dal .
5. Add tamarind extract /tomtato to the dal
6. Add a tsp jaggery /sugar and simmer.

Step 2:
7. Heat oil and ghee and add mustard seeds .
8. When mustard start popping add whole chilli ,curry leaves.
9. Add onion and okra and cook till okra is tender.
10. Now add the dal mixture from the step 1 to the okra mixture .
11. Simmer for another 5 minutes and you are ready to serve.


  1. Looks yummy and delicious...

  2. Looks delicious. I love okra. I always stir fried it. But this gives me a new idea of cooking it. Thanks for sharing.

  3. looks awesome.. lovely presentation.. nice clicks too.. :)

  4. awesome and the platter click too.

  5. Oh wow!!!! that looks fantastic..yummy yumm

  6. Nisha...Looks too the small pappads..

    Kairali sisters

  7. really liked the sambar..ok i am taking this for our lunch..

  8. looks yummy...first time hear nice blog.

  9. my favorite veg Nisha. Looks very tempting with nice texture!

  10. sambar and yours look superb

  11. Thanks for ur comments.. U have an awesome blog and ur pics are great...i m ur new follower now :)

  12. Hi Nisha!
    recipe reminds me of India!

    kind regards,

  13. I'm drooling here..looks so good!!

  14. Okra sambar looks too good and tempting. Loved the platter.

  15. Samabr looks too good Nisha...I too love vendaikai sambar with idlis :)

  16. the platter full of food looks so tempting

  17. Yum! My husband and I are both fans of sambar.. I add all the veggies in but definitely love to have okra in ..

  18. nisha you have award waiting at my blog..come and collect that yarr.

  19. excellent dish...mouthwatering.....

  20. what a 'manapporutham' we have nisha.....both posted vendakka sambar on the same date!!!! hi hi hi...

  21. nice and yummy . my hubby isa great fan of vendakkai the recipe of the instant sabhar powder.
    thanks for visiting my blog

  22. wow!luks absolutely faboulous!tempting click Nisha dear!vendakka sambar is my all time fav

  23. lovely looking sambhar, nisha...its the most fave traditional food in our house!

  24. Hey nisha, i tried your vendakka sambhar yesterday and it came out fantastically good! Me and my husband had it non stop with every meal for a whole day and i am gonna make this again after i get some lady's finger this week! Thanks a lot for the awesome recipe!