Brinjal sambar recipe with step by step photos – a quick and delicious South Indian kathirikai sambar made with small brinjals or baingan. Low fat and vegan recipe.
I make Sambar and rasam very often along with vegetable side dishes. As they are easy to make and healthy also. Thus I have shared many sambar and rasam varieties on the blog.
In this kathirikai sambar, I have used homemade sambar powder. Now when using sambar powder, always make your own if you can or buy a good quality sambar powder. My mom always makes sambar powder and gives it to me. So I don’t need to make a batch for myself. Also, I have a Kerala shop near my place, which sells a really good sambar powder. I don’t remember the brand, but it is good.
For this brinjal sambar I have used the tiny brinjals with thorns on them. They are also called as gavti brinjal. These country brinjals are green in color with thorns on the stems and are generally used for making bharli vangi (stuffed brinjals). However, any brinjal or aubergine would be good in the sambar.
I have used the pressure cooker for cooking the dal and then cooking the brinjals too. However, you can also use a pot for cooking the dal and the brinjals. This is a Quick recipe of making sambar… And one I often resort too when I have less time.
How to make kathirikai sambar
1. Soak 1 tablespoon of seedless tamarind in ½ cup water for 20-25 minutes.
2. Squeeze and extract the pulp from the tamarind. Keep the tamarind pulp aside.
3. Add 1 cup tuvar dal (pigeon pea lentils or arhar dal) with 1 small quartered onion and a pinch of asafoetida powder (hing) with 2.5 to 3 cups water in a pressure cooker.
4. Boil till soft and completely cooked.
5. Quarter or chop 200 grams brinjals. Soak them in salted water for 15-20 minutes.
6. Once the pressure settles down, open the cooker lid and mash the dal with a wooden spoon.
7. Now add 2 or 2.5 cups water and chopped brinjals.
8. Also add 1 medium-sized quartered tomato.
9. Add salt as required, ½ teaspoon red chili powder and ½ teaspoon turmeric powder to the dal.
10. Stir and pressure cook again for 1 whistle. let the pressure settle down. The brinjals would be cooked by now.
11. Now add 2.5 to 3 teaspoons of sambar powder and tamarind pulp.
12. Simmer the sambar till the rawness of the tamarind goes away and the whole mixture has well-blended flavors and taste.
Making tempering for brinjal sambar
13. Measure and keep all the ingredients ready for the tempering.
14. In a small pan, heat 2 tablespoon oil. Add ¾ teaspoon black mustard seeds and ¾ teaspoon urad dal (split and skinned black gram).
15. Splutter the mustard seeds and brown the urad dal.
16. Add 3 to 4 dry red chilies, 12 to 15 curry leaves and 1 pinch of asafoetida.
17. Fry for some seconds.
18. Stir and immediately pour the tempering mixture on the sambar.
19. Cover with a lid, so that the flavors get absorbed.
20. Open after 4-5 minutes.
21. Garnishing with coriander leaves is optional. Serve the Brinjal sambar hot with steamed rice.
Few more Sambar varieties
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for brinjal sambar
- 200 grams brinjals (kathirikai or eggplant)
- 1 small onion, quartered or sliced
- 1 medium sized tomato, quartered
- 1 cup pigeon pea lentils (tuvar dal or arhar dal)
- 1 tablespoon seedless tamarind + ½ cup water
- 1 pinch asafoetida (hing)
- ½ teaspoon red chili powder
- ½ teaspoon turmeric powder (ground turmeric)
- 2.5 to 3 teaspoon sambar powder
- 2 or 2.5 cups water
- salt as required
- 12 to 15 curry leaves
- 3 to 4 dry red chilies
- ¾ teaspoon black mustard seeds
- ¾ teaspoon spilt and skinned black gram (urad dal)
- 1 pinch asafoetida or 1/8 teaspoon asafoetida powder (hing)
- 2 tablespoon groundnut oil or coconut oil or vegetable oil
making brinjal sambar
- Soak the tamarind in 1/2 cup water for 20-25 minutes.
- Squeeze and extract the pulp from the tamarind. Keep the tamarind pulp aside.
- Boil the tuvar dal with onions and a pinch of asafoetida powder with 2.5 to 3 cups water in a pressure cooker, till soft and completely cooked.
- Quarter or chop the brinjals. Soak them in salted water for 15-20 minutes.
- Once the pressure settles down, open the cooker lid and mash the dal with a wooden spoon.
- Now add 2 or 2.5 cups water, chopped brinjals, quartered tomatoes, salt, red chili powder, turmeric powder to the dal.
- Stir and pressure cook again for 1 whistle.
- Let the pressure settle down. The brinjals would be cooked by now.
- Now add the sambar powder, tamarind pulp and simmer the brinjal sambar till the rawness of the tamarind goes away and the whole mixture has well blended flavors and taste.
Making tempering for brinjal sambar
- In a small pan, heat oil. add the mustard seed and urad dal.
- Splutter the mustard seeds and brown the urad dal.
- Add red chilies, curry leaves and asafoetida. fry for some seconds.
- Stir and immediately pour the tempering mixture on the sambar.
- Cover with a lid, so that the flavors get absorbed. Open after 4 to 5 minutes.
- Garnishing with coriander leaves is optional.
- Serve the brinjal sambar hot with steamed rice or South Indian recipes like Idli, Dosa varieties or uttapam.
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