Sambar is a popular dish in south India. It goes very well with Idli, Dosa, Rice, Rava Idli, Upuma, Pongal etc., Sambar is made of toor dal/
Yellow Pigeon Peas and vegetables. You can use any of your choice  vegetables. May be mixed vegetables are just one or two vegetables will also be fine.  Just make sure, if you are using the lady finger/Vendegai/Bendi/Bende kai/okra fry them nicely before adding this vegetable into tamarind juice. 

You can use ready made sambar powder or can make the fresh sambar masala mixture. Here I am using the fresh one. It gives a special taste to it.


  • Toor Dal /Yellow Pigeon Peas - 1 cup
  • Vegetables of your choice 
  • (eg. potatoes, peas, beans, carrot, cauliflower , Lady Finger/Okra, Pumkins, Drumsticks, radish, Avarai or Board Beans, etc,) 
  • Onion - 1 no.
  • Tomato - 1 no.
  • Tamarind Juice - 2 cups
  • Haldi/Turmeric Powder - 1 tsp
  • Salt as per taste
  • Jaggary  tiny ball (Indian Sweetener made from sugar cane juice - available in India)
  • Curry Leaves few

For grinding

  • Chana Dal / Split Black Chickpeas  - 3 tsp
  • Dhaniya / Coriander Seeds - 2 tsp
  • Red Chili- 8 to 10 
  • Fenugreek/Methi  seeds- 1/4 tsp
  • Grated Coconut - 1/2 cup

For Seasoning
  • Vegetable Oil - 1 tsp
  • Mustard Seeds - 1 tsp
  • Urud Dal / White Lentils - 1/2 tsp
  • Whole dry Red Chili - 1
  • Asafoetida /Hing powder - 1/4 tsp



Time Required: 30 mins


1) Cook the Toor dal in a pressure cooker  with 2 cups of water 
2) Soak tamarind in one cup of  water for ten minutes, then squeeze well and strain out juice.
3) In a thick pan add a teaspoon of oil, and add all above mentioned ingredients of grinding and fry them nicely (keep a eye-do not to burn it)
4) Once the fried ingredients cooled down grind it smoothly adding water and keep it aside
5) In a thick bottom pan add oil, onion and tomato and fry them for 2 minutes, then add vegetables, tamarind juice, one cup of water,  salt, turmeric powder, Hing and curry leaves cook until vegetables well done
6) Add blended fine paste and 1 cup of water, bring to boil for 3 to 4 minutes or till they turn aromatic
7) Mash cooked dal with a spoon and add dal to the above mixture and cook it for 2 to 3 minutes
8) Heat oil in a non-stick pan, add the mustard, urud dal seeds, red chili and hing wait to splutter and slide this seasoning in the sambar slowly.

Enjoy the sambar with Rice, Idli, Dosa, Upuma, Pongal, Rava Idli or  anything  of your South Indian dish choice.
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Huli Avalakki / Tamarind Flattened Rice


This recipe I usually prepare it for Shivratri festival. As this is for fasting recipe, here I did't use the onion.  In regular day breakfast we could use onion to taste more.


  • Poha / Avil/ Flattened Rice- 2 Cups
  • Imli Juice / Tamarind Juice - 1 Cup
  • Turmeric Powder- 1 tsp
  • salt as per taste
  • Jaggary  - 1 tbsp (Indian Sweetener made from sugar cane juice - available in Indian store)

For Grinding

  • Coconut grated - 1/2 cup
  • Jeera /Cumin Seeds - 1 tsp
  •  Mustard Seeds - 1 tsp
  • Whole Dry Red Chili - 5 to 6 Nos.

For Seasoning:

  • Mustard Seeds - 1 tsp
  • Urud Dal /White Lentils- tsp
  • Dry Whole Red Chili - 3 nos. 
  • Curry Leaves Few




Time Required : 20 mins


1) Wash poha till clean. Drain water sprinkle a handful of clear water and keep aside.
2) Grind the above mentioned ingredients smoothly without adding water
3) In the tamarind juice add the above blended mixture, salt, turmeric powder and jaggary. Make sure jaggary is nicely dissolved with tamarind juice. Use your fingers to do so. Or keep this mixture for 5 mins.
4) Add poha to this mixture and loosen the poha gently, and break lumps with fingers. This turns white poha into red
5) In a heavy saucepan, heat oil, add seeds, red chili, curry leaves and stir for  2-3 minutes
6) Add poha mixture, mix it well with seasonings. Adjust salt if needed. 
7) Return to low flame stir gently every now and then.

Variations: To tweak a taste a bit , in grinding you could also ingredients like pottu kadalai/Roasted gram, Dhaniya/coriander seeds and garlic.

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Avil Upma / Poha


In southern part of  India commonly called as Upma /Uppuma/Uppittu. Upma usually cooked as a thick porridge using vegetables with various main ingredients  like Rava(semolina), semiya(vermicelli), rice , Moong Dal(Yellow split peas/mung bean) and Oats. This poha upma is the super quick dish.

Check the below quick and easy breakfast Upma Varieties:


  • 1 cup flattened rice (Poha) 
  • 2 onions chopped
  • 1 small potato (boiled & chopped)
  • 1 Carrot chopped (optional)
  • 5-6 green chilies
  • Few Curry leaves
  • 1/2 tsp each cumin & mustard seeds.
  • 1/4 cup crushed pea nuts 
  • 1/4 tsp sugar
  • salt to taste
  • 1/4 cup grated coconut for garnishing(optional)
  • Fresh coriander leaves / Cilantro
  • 1 tsp Lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp oil


1) Wash the poha twice and drain water fully and  sprinkle a handful of clear water and keep aside.
2) After 15 minutes loosen the poha gently, and break lumps with fingers. 
3) In a heavy saucepan, heat oil, add seasoning seeds allow them to crackle, add crushed peanuts, followed by potatoes. Stir for  2-3 minutes. 
4) Add chopped onion, carrot, chilies and curry leaves. Stir and fry onion  till it urns to pink 
5) Add poha, sugar and lemon juice and mix  well 
6) Return to low flame. Stir gently every now and then. Transfer to serving dish and garnish with coriander leaves and coconut. 
7) Serve hot with freshly brewed coffee. :)

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Pal Pongal



  • Moong dal/ Green Gram Split - 1/2 cup.
  • Rice - 1/2 cup
  • Milk - 3 cups
  • Coconut pieces - 1/4 cup
  • Cashew Nuts - 10 to 12 nos.
  • Sugar - 1 cup
  • Raisins (khish-mish - dry grapes)
  • Cardamom/ Elaichi powder - 2 tsp
  • Ghee / Clarified butter)

Time Required: 20 -25 mins


1) Fry the moong dal (before washing) till it becomes little light brown or till you start getting  aroma 

2) Soak rice and dal separately for 10 minutes. 

3)  Cook rice and dal in pressure cooker up to 3 whistles

4) Heat a pan with 2 tbsp of butter/ghee and fry the coconut bite size pieces and transfer into plate and in the same butter fry the cashews and raisins and keep it aside

5) In the same pan add cooked rice and dal smash them nicely and add milk and sugar and mix them thoroughly

7) Add three table spoons of ghee,  powdered cardamon and cook again for a while till all ingredients gets mixed up 

8) Garnish with fried coconut pieces, cashews and raisins.

Serve hot or cold as per your family preference.
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Tamil Nadu Ven Pongal Recipe


It is a wonderful, nurturing and comfort breakfast dish very popular in Tamil Nadu. 

  • 2 cups Rice
  • 3/4 cup Moong Dal / Green Gram Split
  • Mustard Seeds - 1 tsp
  • Urud Dal/ White Lentils - 1 tsp
  • Green Chili - 2 nos. 
  • Few Curry Leaves 
  • 1" grated Ginger  
  • Black Pepper Powder - 3 tsp 
  • Few Cashews and Raisins for garnishing 
  • 5-6 tbsp ghee or butter 
  • Salt to taste

Time Required: 20-25 mins


Step 01) Wash rice and dal. Cook it in a pressure cooker up to 4 whistles

Step 02) Heat ghee and roast cashews & raisins until golden, remove carefully and set aside.

Step 03) In the same pan add  seeds and allow to splutter

Step 04) Add ginger grated, curry leaves, black pepper powder and salt and saute them for about 1 min. 

Step 05) Add cooked rice, dal and cup of water and mix nicely with seasoning 

Step 06) Garnish with cashews & raisins.

Serving: Serve hot with any Sambhar / Churtney /Brinjal Curry 
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Konda Kadalai Sundal/ Chickpeas Sundal

This  chana/ Chickpeas / Konda Kadalai Sundal is one of the  simple and tasty sabzi. Perfect for curd rice. Sundal varieties are also offered for Prasadam /nivedyam for Navratri Festival Recipes.

  • 1 Cup Chana/Black Chickpeas
  • 3 to 4 Green Chilies
  • 1 tbsp Coconut grated
  • 1/4 tsp Haldi/Turmeric Powder
  • 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 2 tsp Urad Dal / White Lentils
  • Oil
  • A pinch of asafoetida/Hing
  • Salt to taste

Time Required: 15 mins.


Step 01) Soak chana overnight.

Step 02) Pressure cook the soaked chana with 1/2 of cup of water for 2 whistles.

Step 03) Blend the grated coconut and green chilies and keep it aside.

Step 04) Heat oil, add seeds allow to splutter. 

Step 05) Add boiled chana, salt, turmeric powder and hing/ asafoetida mix well and saute for 3 minutes.

Step 06) Add blended coconut and green chili mixture and mix well. Adjust the salt if any.

Serving: It goes very well with Curd Rice 
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Chana Chaat

  • 1 Cup Chana /Chickpeas
  • 1 small Onion chopped
  • 1 Tomato chopped
  • 1/2 cup boiled Potato chopped
  • 1/2 tbsp raw Mango chopped
  • Few Curry Leaves 
  • 2 tsp Chaat Masala (Mixture of many Indian spices - Available in Indian store)
  • 1 tsp Red Chili Powder 
  • Salt to Taste 
  • 2 tsp Lemon Juice 
  • Coriander Leaves/Cilantro for garnishing 
Time Required: 15 mins


1) Soak chana overnight. 
2) Pressure cook the soaked chana with 1/2 of cup of water for 2 whistles 
3) In a large bowl add raw onion, tomato, raw mango, boiled potato, curry leaves and mix well. 
4) Add cooked chana, lemon juice, salt, chaat masala and chili powder and mix well. 
5) Garnish with coriander leaves and farsan/fried Indian snacks
6) Serve immediately.
[Continue reading...]

Onion Tomato Chutney


If coconut is not available at home I simply go for this chutney. It goes very well with most of the breakfast dishes like Idli, Masala DosaRava Roti, Rava Dosa, etc., Enjoy this spicy finger licking chutney.


> For Chutney
  • 1.5 cup Tomato chopped 
  • 1 cup Onion chopped 
  • 3 tsp Red chili Powder 
  • 1/4 tsp Haldi/Turmeric powder 
  • Tamarind tiny ball in size 
  • Few of curry leaves 
  • Salt to Taste

> For Seasoning
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds 
  • 1 tsp urad dal /White Lentils (grown in Indian subcontinent- Available in Indian Store)
  • Few of curry leaves 
  • A pinch of asafoetida/Hing 

Time Required: 15 -20 mins


Step 01) Heat oil in a pan and add chopped onion saute 2 mins. 

Step 02) Add tomato and stir fry 1 min. 

Step 03) Add curry leaves, salt, red chili powder, turmeric powder and tamarind

Step 04) Stir fry nicely till raw smell disappears

Step 05) Allow this to cool down completely

Step 06) Grind the above with no water or just a few drops of water and make it thick

Step 07) Add seasoning to the chutney
[Continue reading...]
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