How to make Onion Capsicum Arachuvitta Sambhar -

Arachuvitta means freshly ground and this traditional sambhar from Tamil nadu is made with freshly ground masala

Sanjeev Kapoor

This is a Sanjeev Kapoor exclusive recipe.

Main Ingredients : Onion (प्याज़ ), Green capsicum (हरी शिमला मिर्च )

Cuisine : Tamil Nadu

Course : Dals and Kadhis

Onion Capsicum Arachuvitta Sambhar

Onion Capsicum Arachuvitta Sambhar Recipe Card


The highly developed and sensitive palates of the Tamilians are well chronicled in the Sangam classics. They believe that food should ideally cater to all the six tastes - bitter, pungent, sweet, salty, sour and astringent.
Tamil Nadu has a wide variety of delicious food both for the vegetarians as well as the non-vegetarians, though most of it is made of grains, lentils, rice and vegetables. Spices are added to give a distinctive taste. Rice has been the staple diet of the Tamilians, an inculcated habit, due to the large-scale cultivation of the crop in the state.
Chettinad cuisine, a speciality in Tamil Nadu, is famous for its hot and spicy non-vegetarian food.   A part of the Mudaliar community is non-vegetarians and its cuisine is delightfully spicy without being too hot. Wet masalas are generally used, the main ingredients being fresh coconut paste and ground ginger-garlic.

Prep Time : 16-20 minutes

Cook time : 31-40 minutes

Serve : 4

Level Of Cooking : Moderate

Taste : Spicy

Ingredients for Onion Capsicum Arachuvitta Sambhar Recipe

  • Onion , thickly sliced 1 medium

  • Green capsicum , thickly sliced 1 medium

  • Split pigeon peas (tuvar dal) , pressure cooked with ¼ tsp turmeric powder 1/2 cup

  • Oil 1 tablespoon

  • Fenugreek seeds (methi dana) a pinch

  • Curry leaves 10-12

  • Asafoetida 1/4 teaspoon

  • Turmeric powder 1/2 teaspoon

  • Sambhar masala 1 1/2 tablespoons

  • Salt to taste

  • Tamarind , soaked in 1 cup warm water for 20 minutes 1 lemon si

  • Jaggery , chopped 1 tablespoon

  • Fresh coriander leaves , chopped 2 tablespoons

  • Masala paste

  • Coriander seeds 1/4 cup

  • Cumin seeds 1 tablespoon

  • Split pigeon peas (tuvar dal) 2 tablespoons

  • Split Bengal gram (chana dal) 1 tablespoon

  • Fresh coconut , scraped 1/2 cup

  • Oil 1/2 teaspoon

  • Dried red chillies (pandi) 5-6

  • Tempering

  • Ghee 1 tablespoon

  • Mustard seeds 1 teaspoon

  • Asafoetida a pinch

  • Curry leaves 5-6


Step 1

To make the masala paste, dry roast coriander seeds and cumin seeds till fragrant in a non-stick pan. Transfer onto a plate and set aside to cool.

Step 2

Similarly, dry roast pigeon peas and Bengal gram in the same pan till they turn golden brown. Transfer onto the same plate and let them cool.

Step 3

Dry roast coconut in the same pan till it turns golden brown. Transfer onto the same plate and let it cool.

Step 4

Heat oil in the same pan, add the dried red chillies and saute for a minute. Transfer onto the same plate and let them cool completely.

Step 5

Put all these ingredients into a mixer jar, add ½ cup water and blend to a semi-smooth paste.

Step 6

To make the sambhar, heat oil in a non-stick deep pan. Add fenugreek seeds and 5-6 curry leaves and sauté for a few seconds.

Step 7

Add the onion and sauté till translucent. Add the capsicum and sauté till the onions turn golden brown.

Step 8

Add turmeric powder, sambhar masala and salt and sauté for a minute. Squeeze the soaked tamarind to extract the pulp and add along with the water and mix well. Let the mixture come to a boil. Continue to cook for 10-12 minutes.

Step 9

Add the ground paste and mix well. Cook for 2-3 minutes.

Step 10

Add the cooked pigeon peas and mix. Add the remaining curry leaves and mix well. Cook for 1-2 minutes.

Step 11

Add jaggery and mix, cook till it melts. Add coriander leaves and mix well.

Step 12

To make the tempering, heat ghee in a small pan. Add mustard seeds and let them splutter. Add asafoetida and curry leaves and mix. Pour this into the sambhar and mix well. Serve hot with steamed rice.

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MasterChef Sanjeev Kapoor

Chef Sanjeev Kapoor is the most celebrated face of Indian cuisine. He is Chef extraordinaire, runs a successful TV Channel FoodFood, hosted Khana Khazana cookery show on television for more than 17 years, author of 150+ best selling cookbooks, restaurateur and winner of several culinary awards. He is living his dream of making Indian cuisine the number one in the world and empowering women through power of cooking to become self sufficient. His recipe portal is a complete cookery manual with a compendium of more than 10,000 tried & tested recipes, videos, articles, tips & trivia and a wealth of information on the art and craft of cooking in both English and Hindi.