Drumstick Sambar

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This drumstick sambar perfectly combines tangy tamarind, aromatic spices, and creamy coconut, making it a delightful accompaniment to rice or idli.

Drumstick Sambar is a popular South Indian dish that combines the goodness of toor dal, drumsticks, and a blend of spices.  Also known as Murungakai Kuzhambu, this flavorful and comforting sambar is a perfect accompaniment to rice or idli. The recipe starts with toasting asafoetida, fenugreek seeds, gram dal, red chillies, and coriander seeds, then ground into a fine paste with grated coconut. Meanwhile, toor dal is boiled and mashed separately.

Drumsticks are cooked until soft and added to the tamarind extract, mashed dal, and ground paste. The mixture is simmered until the flavours meld together. Finally, a mustard seed and curry leaf seasoning is added for an extra burst of flavour. The result is a rich, tangy sambar that will tantalize your taste buds. Serve hot with rice for a satisfying meal.

Drumstick Sambar

Drumstick Sambar


Drumstick Sambar
5 from 1 vote

Drumstick Sambar

This drumstick sambar perfectly combines tangy tamarind, aromatic spices, and creamy coconut, making it a delightful accompaniment to rice or idli.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: South Indian, Tamil Nadu


  • 1 cup Toor Dal
  • 1 tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 4 to 5 Drumsticks
  • 1 lemon-sized ball of tamarind
  • 1 1/2 tsp Sesame Seed Oil
  • as per taste Salt

For the Masala

  • 1/4 tsp Asafoetida Powder
  • 1/4 tsp Fenugreek Seeds
  • 1 tbsp Gram Dal
  • 3 to 4 Dried Red Chillies
  • 2 tbsp Coriander Seeds
  • 4 tbsp Coconut grated

For the Seasoning

  • 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 2 sprigs Curry Leaves


  • Heat 1 tbsp of sesame seed oil in a kadai.
  • Fry asafoetida and fenugreek seeds until they turn brown, and remove them from the kadai.
  • Add gram dal and red chillies, and fry until the dal turns golden brown.
  • Remove and add coriander seeds; fry for 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Add coconut and fry until it turns golden brown. Remove.
  • Add all these ingredients to a fine paste and set aside.
  • Boil toor dal with 1/2 tsp of turmeric powder in a pressure cooker. Mash and set aside.
  • Boil tamarind with sufficient water. Cool and extract the thick pulp.
  • Boil drumsticks with salt and 1/2 tsp of turmeric powder. Cook until soft.
  • To the cooked drumsticks, add tamarind extract, simmer for 1 to 2 minutes, and then add mashed dal, ground paste, and some water. Then, allow the mixture to simmer for 3 to 5 minutes.
  • In a separate pan, heat sesame seed oil and add mustard seeds. Once they start to splutter, add curry leaves and remove them from the heat.
  • Add this seasoning to the sambar mixture and mix well.
  • Serve hot with rice.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

Can I make Drumstick Sambar without drumsticks?

While drumsticks are the star ingredient of this recipe, you can still enjoy a delicious sambar by substituting them with other vegetables like okra, eggplant, or carrots. The flavours may vary slightly, but it will still be tasty.

What are some suitable pairings with Drumstick Sambar?

Drumstick Sambar pairs well with steamed rice, idli, dosa, or vada. You can also serve it with a side of coconut chutney and papad for a complete South Indian meal experience.

Can I freeze leftover Drumstick Sambar?

You can freeze leftover sambar in an airtight container for future use. Just make sure to thaw it properly before reheating. The flavours may intensify upon reheating, making it even more delicious.

5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

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