Vendakkai Sambar – Lady’s finger(okra) Sambar

Sambar, In my opinion, the name always carries a flavour. When we pronounce it I sense the flavour of sambar masala. Maybe it’s only me or you all might feel the same. Sambar is so common and a peculiar dish. I call it peculiar because it is as common in every household in Tamilnadu that every week definitely once it will be cooked, at the same time No South Indian vegetarian feast can be cooked without sambar as one of its dishes. Sambar is also a dish we can make it with meagre veggies or rich dish by using plenty of veggies. I think this feature of sambar make it a staple curry at our homes and also be a feast curry.

I like to have Vendakkai sambar along with Rice. Nicely saute the okra/vendakkai in oil this remove the stickiness or sliminess in it. Beetroot poriyal, carrot poriyal, cabbage poriyal, dry potato recipes or any stir fry or thoran are a perfect side dish for this sambar

Also,try the other sambar recipes.

Mixed vegetable sambar

Radish sambar

Small onions Sambar

Moong dal Sambar

Idi Sambar

Sambar sadam

Lets see how to cook it.

Preparation Time : 20 mins

Cooking Time : 35 mins

Serves : 3-4


For cooking dal

Toor dal – 1/2 cup

Water – 1 cup

Oil – 1 tsp

For making sambar

Oil – 1 tbsp

Shallots – 10 nos

Garlic – 8 pods

Lady’s finger – 15 nos ( cut into 1.5 inch pieces)

Green chillies – 2 to 3

Tomato – 1 ( medium sized, chopped)

Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp

Sambar powder – 1.5 tbsp

Salt to taste

Tamarind – a small lemon size

coriander leaves – 1/2 cup ( chopped)

Jagggery – 1/2 tbsp

For Tempering

Oil – 2 tbsp

Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp

Fenugreek seeds – a pinch

Dried red chillies – 2

Curry leaves – 2 sprigs

Asafoetida – 1/4 tsp


1.Soak toor dal in water for about 15 mins.Then drain the water, add it a pressure cooker along with 1cup of water, oil and pressure cook for 2 to 3 whistles.

2. Soak tamarind in 1/2 cup of water .

3.Heat oil in a pan or pot.Add shallots, garlic and lady’s finger.saute them well in oil.This will remove the stickiness in it.Then add green chillies, chopped tomatoes and saute them.

4. Add turmeric powder, sambar powder.Mix the powders well with the veggies.Add the tamarind extract, salt required.Allow it to boil.

5.Once it has come to a boil.Mash the cooked toor dal and add it.Mix well.Add 2 cups of water or as required,some jaggery, chopped coriander leaves to it and bring it to a nice boil and then switch off the flame.

6.In a tadka pan, add oil.when its hot add mustard seeds.let them splutter.Then add fenugreek seeds.let it turn golden.add dried red chillies pieces, curry leaves and asafoetida.Switch off the flame and add it to sambar.

Serve sambar with rice, idli or dosa.

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