Brinjal Sambar - Idli sambar diaries!

Idli sambar is eaten in different parts of India. Though it may have originated in Southern India, it has become a staple in many households across the country. Idli sambar is a very popular and highly nutritional breakfast food in many parts of India, and is a great variation of sambar. Idli is steamed rice cakes while sambar is a lentil curry with vegetables. Idli sambar can have various different variations. Idlis can be made with rice, ragi, sooji, while sambar can be of many different types. Some vegetables that are used popularly are pumpkin, brinjal, okra, onion, drumstick, radish, tomatoes, green beans, etc. One popular variation of sambar is the brinjal sambar. Brinjal sambar is known as Kathirikai Sambar in Tamil, and in Telugu, it is called Vankaya Sambar.

Brinjal Sambar Info:

Prep Time

15 Mins

Cook Time

25 Mins

Total Time

40 Mins




Main course

Brinjal Sambar Ingredients (4 servings):

  • Toor dal/Arhar dal/Pigeon pea lentils – 1 cup
  • Eggplant/brinjal – 2 or 3 small, small dices
  • Onion – 1 small, chopped
  • Tomatoes – 2 medium, chopped
  • Dried red chilies – 3 to 4, whole without the stem
  • Curry leaves – 10 to 12
  • Tamarind paste – 1 tablespoon
  • Black mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon
  • Sambar masala – 2 tablespoons
  • Red chili powder – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Turmeric powder – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Asafoetida/hing – 1 pinch
  • Salt – To taste
  • Oil – 1 tablespoon

Step-by-Step Instructions:

  • 1 cup of arhar or toor dal is to be washed thoroughly.
  • Add this in the pressure cooker with 4 cups of water, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon
    haldi or turmeric powder.
  • Add the diced brinjal pieces and cook for two whistles.
  • While the sambar cooks, for the tempering, heat oil in a pan.
  • Once the oil is heated, add mustard seeds and hing.
  • Once the mustard seeds stop spluttering, add the dried red chilies and the curry leaves.
  • Once the chilies and curry leaves are roasted and have become fragrant, add the
    chopped onion. Sauté till the onion is soft and translucent.
  • Then add in the chopped tomatoes and cook till it has softened and become mushy.
  • To this mixture, add in the sambar powder and red chili powder.
  • Add the tamarind paste diluted in water to this mixture. Make sure the tamarind paste
    is dissolved well in the water, or else it will form lumps.
  • Cook this paste till the oil starts to separate and can be seen at the sides of the pan.
  • After this, add the cooked dal and brinjal mixture to the pan and mix well.
    Add water to achieve suitable consistency.
  • Let the sambar simmer for 6 minutes, at least. Once all the different components are
    mixed well and homogenous, turn off the heat.
  • Garnish with some curry leaves and fried dried red chilies. Coriander leaves can also be
    used for garnish.

This brinjal sambar can be served with rice or ragi idlis for a complete meal of idli sambar. Idlis can be made quite easily at home with readymade idli batter from iD Fresh Food. Get the idli batter and make homemade delicious idli sambar whenever you crave it.