Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Urundai Sambar

It's been a long time since I made this sambhar. Way back in May 2007 we were doing a roadshow in Chennai and my friend Nimmy suggested that I must try this specialty. Yeah she is the philosopher, thinker, creative, outspoken friend of mine. We were at Day's Inn and those days are remembered fondly for many more reasons. So on recommendation for someone who knows her Tamil roots well but when it comes to food becomes a bumbler and she was recommending this. So it must be something. I did take a spoonful and then went back for more.

Now while making this at home I googled for this sambhar but the version I ate at Day's Inn was different from the result I checked out. So this version is the Day's Inn version and not what you see on so many blogs.


For the Urundai/ Dal balls
1/2 cup Chana dal / split chick peas
1/2 cup Tur dal/ yellow lentils
1 fine chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon red chili powder
1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
salt to taste

Soak the dals separately after washing clean for 2 hrs. Grind to paste. Leave it crumbly coarse. Mine got too fine. Mix in all the spices and salt and roll up into balls. Keep aside.

For the gravy
1 cup Tur dal/ yellow lentils
2 onions chopped
1 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
1 green chili
2 tablespoon grated fresh coconut
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
2 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon red chili powder
1 tomato fine chopped
1 tablespoon thick tamarind extract
1 small piece of jaggery (optional)
few curry leaves
mustard seeds
salt to taste

Pressure cook the dal for 3-4 whistles. While the pressure cooker is cooling down make the masala. Grind together all the spices with coconut. 

Heat oil in a deep vessel. Make the tadka with mustard seeds and curry leaves. Add the tamarind extract, tomatoes and cooked dal. Beat it with a beater to get smooth consistency. Add the masala paste and bring to a rolling boil. Add the shaped dal balls. OK mine fell flat as the dals got ground to fineness. Leave them untouched and allow simmering for 15 mins or till cooked completely. Balance the taste with salt and jaggery.

I served with hot steamed rice. Sprinkles of fried Vathal Sundakai  makes a nice crunchy garnish besides the standard splash of green in the form of cilantro. Dal balls or balls gone flat still tasted awesome.


  1. wow thats a very new recipe. I thought only eggies are added to sambhar but this looks great.

  2. Slurp,mouthwatering here..

  3. Yum ...wish to have that platter

  4. Reminds us of the time we were in Chennai and would discover a new sambhar and be completely amazed at the variety! This one seems real nice!

  5. Kiran this one is a double dose of protein.

  6. I tried this from 'Dakshin'... it was ok, not too memorable, after looking at this post, maybe i should give this another shot.


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