Buttermilk Sambhar (Traditional Mor Sambhar)


Buttermilk Sāmbhar (Traditional Mor Sāmbhar) is a gravy/Side dish prepared with Sour thick Butter milk, Toor dal, Dry Chillies, coriander seeds, Brinjal/ladies finger/Drumstick, Ginger, Mustard seeds, Rice flour, Chana dal, Green Chillies, Fenugreek and Curry leaves.

This is not the Mor Kuzhambu/Butter milk Kuzhambu which we often make. This is a type of Sāmbhar and it has a very unique aroma and taste. This toothsome dish is used to be prepared in olden days. It tastes the best with Plain rice and it can also be used as a Side dish for Roti, Phulka and Chapati. It is my great Grand Mother’s recipe. Here is the simple recipe of Butter milk Sāmbhar.

Cooking time: For cooking Sāmbhar: 5- 6 minutes

                       For roasting Brinjals: 5-6 minutes

Serves: 3-4


1 spoon = 10 ml

1 tsp = 5 ml

1 coffee spoon = 2.5 ml

  • Toor dal – 17 tsp
  • Sour Thick Butter milk (Consistency of a milk shake) – 300 ml
  • Salt – required
  • Mustard seeds – ½ tsp
  • Fenugreek – slightly less than ¼ tsp
  • Dry Chilli – 8
  • Coriander seeds – 1 ½ tsp
  • Turmeric powder – slightly more than ¼ coffee spoon
  • Chana dal – 1 tsp
  • Khus khus (Poppy seeds) – ½ tsp
  • Brinjal – 1 (chopped Lengthwise)
  • Ginger – 1 inch (Finely chopped)
  • Rice flour – 1 tsp
  • Curry leaves – few
  • Green Chillies – 4 (Chopped)
  • Cooking Oil – 2 spoon + (1-2) spoons for roasting Brinjals


  1. I have prepared thick sour Butter milk by grinding ¼ cup thick sour curd with ½ cup Water (1 cup= 300 ml) in a Mixie.
  2. Add the prepared sour Butter milk with the Rice flour.
  3. Roast the chopped Brinjal with the Cooking Oil ((1-2) spoons) until it gets roasted well in a small Kadai/Pan at medium flame. Switch off the flame. Roasted Brinjals are ready to use.
  4. Dry roast the Coriander seeds, Chana dal, khus khus (Poppy seeds), dry Chillies (4) until the dal turns golden brown in a Kadai at medium flame (It took 3 minutes to roast it). Turn off the flame. Cool the mixture for 2-3 minutes and then grind it to a smooth powder. Ground powder is ready to use.
  5. Cook the Toor dal with Water (slightly less than 1 ¾ cup) (1 cup = 300 ml), required Salt and Turmeric powder (slightly more than ¼ coffee spoon) for 8 whistles in a pressure cooker (I cooked Toor dal in 5 litre stainless steel pressure cooker). Mash it well.
  6. Roast the Mustard seeds with the Cooking Oil (2 spoon) until it crackles. Then, roast the fenugreek, Dry Chillies (4), Green Chillies for 2 minutes.
  7. Then add the prepared Buttermilk mixed with Rice flour mixture to it.
  8. After 30 seconds, add the mashed Toor dal and roasted Brinjals to it.
  9. After a minute, add the prepared ground powder to it and mix it well. Boil it for 2 minutes. Switch off the flame.
  10. Finally, add the chopped Ginger and Curry leaves to it. Mix it well. Hot Buttermilk Sāmbhar (Traditional Mor Sāmbhar) is ready to serve.

Note: Ladies finger/Drum stick can also be added instead of Brinjals. If drumstick is used, it has to be boiled and cooked separately and then it should be added in the Sambhar. If Ladies finger is used, the procedure is same like Brinjals.

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