Chinna vengaya sambar/Small Onion sambar is one of the most aromatic sambar recipes next to drumstick sambar.Last year i posted brahmin(iyer)style arachuvitta sambar recipe with onions and drumstick adding freshly ground paste.But this sambar is a very simple and easy to prepare which needs no grinding and no coconut.It can be made within 10 minutes if u have cooked dal in hand.Even bachelor’s can try this sambar.This is my MIL’s basic sambar recipe with onions.Mostly i make this sambar when i run short of vegetables.As shallots are very costly in Bangalore compared to Salem,my in-laws buy one or two kgs for me whenever they visit my place.So i keep making onion recipes like sambar,chutney or pickle at least twice in a week.This vengaya sambar is our family favourite.Raksha loves to have this sambar for idli,dosa too.So i dilute this sambar slightly and serve it with mini idli drizzling with ghee.Ok, Lets see how to prepare this south indian onion sambar recipe .
Onion sambar recipe/Vengaya sambar
Small onion sambar recipe - South indian style
Prep time:15 Minutes
Cook time:10 Minutes
Total time:25 Minutes
To pressure cook
Toor dal - 1/3 cup
Turmeric powder - 1/8 tsp
Red chilli - 1 no (pinched)
Curry leaves - few
Cooking oil - 2 drops
Water - as needed
To temper & saute
Cooking oil + Ghee - 1 tbsp + 1 tsp
Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
Methi seeds - 1/3 tsp
Red chilli - 1 no ( pinch into 2)
Green chillies – 3 – 4 nos
Small onions/Shallots - 15 nos OR Sliced Big onion - 2 nos
Tomato – 1/2 no ( cut into small pieces,optional to use)
Pressure cook toor dal adding all the ingredients mentioned under “to pressure cook “.Pressure cook in low flame for one whistle adding enough water.Open the lid and mash the dal well with a ladle.Set aside.
Soak tamarind in 1/2 cup of water.Wash and peel the small onions,slit green chillies and set aside.
Take the tamarind extract adding 1-1.5 cup of water.Extract should be 1.5-2 cups in total.Add sambar powder,turmeric powder,salt,hing and pinched raw curry leaves to it.
In a kadai,heat oil+ghee and splutter mustard seeds.When it starts to crackle,add methi seeds,pinched red chillies,green chillies,small onions,tomato pieces(if using) & curry leaves.Saute until onion turns transparent.
Now add the tamarind extract mixture and boil well till onions gets cooked well yet firm without losing its shape.
After the mixture is reduced in quantity,add cooked toor dal and sugar or jaggery. Add little water if necessary.Boil for 2 minutes. Adjust the consistency.Check for taste.
Add coriander leaves,boil for few seconds and switch off the flame ! Transfer it to a vessel.Add a tsp of ghee.Cover it with a lid.Give a standing time of 30 minutes and then serve.
Adding ghee while tempering gives a nice smell to the sambar like in restaurants.
Use sliced big onions in place of shallots if u don’t have in hand but small onions gives a nice flavor than big ones.
Adjust the quantity of tamarind if u add tomato else sambar will become tangy.
If u feel the sambar is tangy,add some plain red chilli powder & allow it to boil for sometime.It helps to balance the taste.
Enjoy vengaya sambar with vathal/vadam or appalam & poriyal.I had with simple tindora curry
Do check out my other sambar recipes if interested