January 11, 2013

Sambar Vadai

You’ll Need:

For Making Vadai:

Urad Dal - 1 cup
Salt - To Taste
Oil - For Deep frying

For Making Sambar:

Tur Dal - ½ cup
Yellow Pumpkin - 50 gms
Onion - 2
Tomato - 3
Tamarind - 1 small lemon size
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Asafetida - 2 pinch
Salt - To taste
Curry leaves - 1 sprig
Coriander leaves - 3 tbsp
Oil - 2 tbsp
Jaggery or Sugar (Optional) - 2 tsp

For Making Powder:

Whole red Chillies - 8
Channa dal - 1 tbsp
Whole coriander seeds - 2 tbsp
Cumin seeds - ½ tsp
Fenugreek seeds - ¼ tsp

Dry roast all the above said ingredients in a kadai together to a deep brown color over low flame. This may take some time, so don’t get impatient and burn them in the process. Powder finely in mixie and keep aside.


For Making Vadai:

Soak the Urad dal for an hour and grind it to a thick batter using little water. The batter should be very thick and not watery. Heat oil in a kadai and add salt to the prepared batter. Mix well.

Shape the batter in the form of ball and flatten over a plastic sheet. Slip it slowly into the hot oil. Cook till golden brown and remove on an absorbent paper and put them directly in the sambar

For Making Sambar:

Chop the yellow pumpkin roughly and pressure cook along with tur dal with enough water for 2 or 3 whistles. Mash well. Soak the tamarind in some hot water and extract pulp.

Heat oil in a kadai. Add mustard seeds, when they crackle add the chopped onions and cook till it becomes translucent. Now add the chopped tomatoes and cook it turns mushy.

Add the tamarind pulp and bring to a boil. Add the finely ground powder, asafetida, curry leaves and salt and simmer for 5 mins.

Now add the cooked dal and water, if needed to the consistency you want and mix well. Simmer for 10 minutes. Add coriander leaves and Jaggery or sugar, if using and take off the stove.

How to Serve:

Take a 1/4 portion of the sambar in a separate vessel. To this add 1/2 cup of hot water and salt to taste. Mix well. Put the vadais in this portion of liquefied sambar. Let it soak for 10 – 15 minutes.

Place the soaked vadais in the serving plate. Pour the remaining sambar from the 3/4 th portion of the sambar kept aside over these vadais. Sprinkle coriander leaves over them and serve hot.


Do not add rice flour to the vada batter to make it crisp as they need to soak in the sambar.
Add jaggery of sugar to the sambar to get the authentic taste and a hotel feel.
You can also add chopped onions over the vadais while serving but I prefer not to as they it loses the typical south Indian flavor.

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