arachuvitta sambar recipe, how to make arachuvitta sambar recipe

arachuvitta sambar recipe

arachuvitta sambar recipe with step by step pics – presenting one of our favorite sambar recipe from the south indian cuisine.

in tamil language the word ‘arachuvitta’ means ‘to grind’. the sambar is made with roasted spices, which are then ground with fresh coconut. hence the name arachuvitta sambar.

arachuvitta sambar is a sambar that is made in tambrahm homes. so a tamil brahmin specialty. this sambar recipe is without onions and garlic. also no sambar powder is added.

i prepare this sambar on occasions to be served with steamed rice. sometimes i also serve this aromatic sambar with idli, dosa or medu vada.

i usually make this arachuvitta sambar either with pearl onions or with mix vegetables. the mix veggies i add are carrots, okra, radish, capsicum, brinjals, french beans, white or yellow pumpkin, drumsticks, colocasia (arbi). whatever i have at home. in this recipe post, i have added drumsticks, white pumpkin/ash gourd and carrots.

pearl onions or sambar onions gives good taste, so you can add these too. you can also add tomato, if you want. the color of the sambar depends on the type of red chilies you add. i have used byadagi red chilies and hence the orange color.

serve arachuvitta sambar with steamed rice or with onion, dosa, medu vada or uttapam.

step step pics after the recipe card. 

arachuvitta sambar recipe below:

  1. first rinse ½ cup arhar dal/tuvar or pigeon pea lentils and add them in the pressure cooker. also add ¼ tsp turmeric powder and 2 cups water. stir well and pressure cook the lentils for 8 to 9 whistles.
  2. when the pressure settles down on its own, open the lid of the cooker and mash the dal with a wired whisk or spoon.
  1. meanwhile while the lentils are getting pressure cooked, in a small bowl take ½ cup hot water and 1.5 tbsp tightly packed tamarind. soak the tamarind in hot water for about 20 to 30 minutes.
  2. later squeeze the pulp from the tamarind in the bowl. keep aside.
  1. next in a small pan, heat 2 tsp sesame oil (not the asian variety of sesame oil). add 4-5 dry red chillies, 1 tbsp coriander seeds, ¼ tsp methi seeds/fenugreek seeds, 1 tsp chana dal and ½ tsp black pepper.
  2. on a low flame stir and roast the spices.
  3. when the spices become fragrant switch off the flame and keep the pan down. allow the roasted spices to become warm or cool down.
  4. take the roasted spices in a chutney grinder or a wet grinder jar. also add 4 tbsp coconut.
  5. grind to a smooth paste with 5 to 6 tbsp water. add more water if required while grinding. keep this ground sambar masala aside.
  1. next step is to heat 2 tbsp sesame oil in a pot or pan. then add 1 tsp mustard seeds and let them crackle.
  2. once the mustard seeds crackle, then add 2 dry red chilies and a pinch of asafoetida. stir and saute till the red chilies change color. don’t burn them.
  3. now add 1 sprig curry leaves (about 12 to 15 curry leaves) and 2 drumsticks (chopped), 1 cup of diced ash gourd and 1 medium to large carrot (diced). if you plan to add pearl onions or regular onions, then saute them with curry leaves till they turn translucent. add the mix veggies later once you saute the onions. stir very well.
  4. add the tamarind pulp and ¼ tsp turmeric powder to the veggies. stir. tamarind pulp can be added later too, if you don’t want the sour taste in the veggies.
  5. next add 1 cup water. add 1 tsp salt or as per taste. do check while the veggies are cooking and if required add some water if the water becomes less. i added ½ cup water later.
  6. cover the pan and simmer on a medium to high flame till the veggies are cooked.
  7. in 20 to 25 minutes, the veggies will be cooked.
  8. then add the mashed dal and the freshly ground sambar masala.
  9. stir very well. if the sambar looks very thick, then add some more water. if thin, then add 1 to 2 tbsp rice flour to thicken it.
  10. simmer more for 4 to 5 minutes on a medium to high flame.
  11. you can serve arachuvitta sambar with steamed rice or idli, dosa or any south indian tiffin snack. if you want you can also garnish arachuvitta sambar with some chopped coriander leaves.


if you are looking for more sambar recipes then do check vegetable sambartiffin sambarkathirikai sambar, udipi sambar, radish sambar, kala vatana sambar and kerala sambar recipe.

step by step arachuvitta sambar recipe:

1. first rinse ½ cup arhar dal/tuvar or pigeon pea lentils and add them in the pressure cooker. also add ¼ tsp turmeric powder and 2 cups water. stir well and pressure cook the lentils for 8 to 9 whistles.



lentils for arachuvitta sambar recipe


2. meanwhile while the lentils are getting pressure cooked, in a small bowl take ½ cup hot water and 1.5 tbsp tightly packed tamarind. soak the tamarind in hot water for about 20 to 30 minutes.



tamarind for arachuvitta sambar recipe


3. next in a small pan, heat 2 tsp sesame oil (not the asian variety of sesame oil). add 4-5 dry red chillies, 1 tbsp coriander seeds, ¼ tsp methi seeds/fenugreek seeds, 1 tsp chana dal and ½ tsp black pepper.



spices for arachuvitta sambar recipe


4. on a low flame stir and roast the spices.



spices for arachuvitta sambar recipe


5. when the spices become fragrant switch off the flame and keep the pan down. allow the spices to become warm or cool down.



spices for arachuvitta sambar recipe


6. next step is to heat 2 tbsp sesame oil in a pot or pan. then add 1 tsp mustard seeds and let them crackle.



mustard seeds for arachuvitta sambar recipe


7. once the mustard seeds crackle, then add 2 dry red chilies and a pinch of asafoetida/hing. stir and saute till the red chilies change color. don’t burn them.



chillies for arachuvitta sambar recipe


8. now add 1 sprig curry leaves (about 12 to 15 curry leaves) and 2 drumsticks (peeled chopped), 1 cup of diced ash gourd and 1 medium to large carrot (diced). if you plan to add pearl onions or regular onions, then saute them with curry leaves till they turn translucent. add the mix veggies later once you saute the onions. you can add about 1.5 cups of mixed veggies except the drumsticks.



vegetables for arachuvitta sambar recipe


9. stir very well.



vegetables for arachuvitta sambar recipe


10. by now the tamarind must have got soaked very well. squeeze the pulp from the tamarind in the bowl.



tamarind for arachuvitta sambar recipe


11. add the tamarind pulp and ¼ tsp turmeric powder to the veggies and stir. tamarind pulp can be added later too, if you don’t want the sour taste in the veggies.



tamarind for arachuvitta sambar recipe


12. next add 1 cup water.



water for arachuvitta sambar recipe


13. add 1 tsp salt or as required.



salt for arachuvitta sambar recipe


14. cover the pan and simmer on a medium to high flame till the veggies are cooked.



simmer arachuvitta sambar


15. when the veggies are cooking, take the roasted spices in a chutney grinder or a wet grinder jar. also add 4 tbsp fresh grated coconut. if you do not have grated coconut, then add desiccated coconut.



spices for arachuvitta sambar recipe


16. grind to a smooth paste with 5 to 6 tbsp water. add more water if required while grinding. keep this ground sambar masala aside.



sambar masala for arachuvitta sambar recipe


17. when the pressure settles down on its own, open the lid of the cooker and mash the dal with a whisk or spoon.



making arachuvitta sambar recipe


18. in 20 to 25 minutes, the veggies will be cooked. if while cooking, the water becomes less, then do add some more water. i did add ½ cup water later when the veggies were getting cooked.



making arachuvitta sambar recipe


19. then add the mashed dal and the freshly ground sambar masala.



making arachuvitta sambar recipe


20. stir very well. if the sambar looks very thick, then add some more water. if thin, then add 1 to 2 tbsp rice flour to thicken it. check the taste and add more salt if required.



making arachuvitta sambar recipe


22. simmer more for 4 to 5 minutes on a medium to high flame.



simmer arachuvitta sambar


23. you can serve arachuvitta sambar with steamed rice or idli, dosa or any south indian tiffin snack. if you want you can also garnish arachuvitta sambar with some chopped coriander leaves.



arachuvitta sambar recipe


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