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Sorakai sambar ( Dudhi, bottlegourd )

I have been going through the recipes posted in my blog and realized that I had not posted a sambar dish. The trademark of being a Tamil is sambar dish yet I did not have any. Whenever we Tamils see a veggie we make a sambar out of it. Telugus will make a pappu and keralites a thoran I would guess. I am not familiar with other cuisines 🙂

Sorakai and pumpkin are two classy watery veggies that soaks up all the flavour of sambar. These veggies literally burst into bundles of flavour when bitten – the taste is completely acquired.

Sorakai sambar, brinjal curry & mango pickle

Here goes my recipe for sambar

– cup of toor dal boiled and mashed
– 10 one inch pieces of sorakai peeled
– half an onion chopped
– 1 juicy vine riped tomato
– 1 lemon size tamarind pulp
– 1 teaspoon good sambar powder – I use the one sent by amma from home
– a fistful of coriander leaves
– 1/4th tsp turmeric
– salt to taste
– for tempering – one tsp each of oil, mustard, fenugreek, cumin, 4 to 5 curry leaves

Sorakai ( Sorakaya, Dudhi )- Right pressure-cooked dal

– Pressure cook the toor dal with twice the amount of water for 2 to 3 whistles.
– soak the tamarind

– Heat the oil for tempering
– Meanwhile chop the onions, tomato
– Temper the oil with the ingredients for tempering. Add onion and saute for two minutes. Add the tomato and saute for another 2 minutes
– Meanwhile peel and chop the sorakai – Remove the middle spongy part of the sorakai while chopping. Add to the mixture above.
– Add a cup and half of water, sambar powder, turmeric, salt and allow to boil for 10 minutes

– Add the mashed dal to the mixture and continue to boil for another 5 minutes
– Add the tamarind pulp and when it foams on the top add coriander leaves and switch off.
– Enjoy with rice.

Needless to say this sambar tastes extremely well when allowed to sit for a couple of hours.


November 24, 2006 - Posted by | Uncategorized


  1. I luv Sorakai..but not in the sambar format.. my granny makes it like gramathu virundhu…i will try to get the recipe…so that you can log that in your blog 🙂

    Comment by Syam | November 25, 2006 | Reply

  2. hi revathi,
    great dish of dudhi. 🙂
    i love trying different recipe with it. Hope to get your email or post soon in my inbox with your new recipe for the next week(i.e coming monday) with fenugreek .
    thanks for being there with me.
    happy thanks giving.
    Stay tuned

    Comment by Pooja | November 25, 2006 | Reply

  3. Hi Revathi

    So many sambar recipes. Keep them coming!

    Comment by Lakshmik | November 25, 2006 | Reply

  4. sorakai Sambar, i luv this dish. looks good Revathi.

    Comment by Lakshmi | November 25, 2006 | Reply

  5. Hi,

    Thanks for the recipe. I love trying out different veggies when making Sambar. This is definitely on my list 🙂

    Comment by Sangeeta | November 26, 2006 | Reply

  6. Yummy sambhar,Revs! I am dying for some here:))

    Comment by Asha | November 26, 2006 | Reply

  7. Revathi, looks so good. Viji

    Comment by Vcuisine | November 26, 2006 | Reply

  8. Revathi, you hit the nail on the head, whenever I look at a veggie, that is the thought that goes through my mind “Will it taste good in Sambhar”. Sorakai sambhar looks good.

    Comment by indosungod | November 26, 2006 | Reply

  9. You know what Revathi, my mom used to put Dudhi in sambar and as a teenager I did not much like it. But then I ate Sambar with Dudhi in one of my favourite restaurants in Pune and it was delicious. And you know that my mother had a lot to say about that. Your recipe just reminded me of that restaurant which I haven’t visited in ages. Got a bit nostalgic. Thanx for the recipe.

    Comment by Anupama | November 26, 2006 | Reply

  10. Hi Revathi,

    You are 100% correct,tamilians trademark is sambar.

    i never had sorakai,but had pumpkin.Especially during pongal in most of house, i think they do this pumpkin sambar…

    Comment by USHA | November 26, 2006 | Reply

  11. I just noticed.. u live in fremont! I was there and in Cupertino.

    Comment by Shaheen | November 28, 2006 | Reply

  12. Hmm, I dont remember if my mom made with sorrkai, but liked sambhar, paruppu and nei with appalam..aha what a combo illa revathi

    Comment by Shankari | November 29, 2006 | Reply

  13. what is nutritional value for Dudhi and Indian Karela?

    Comment by Anonymous | March 12, 2007 | Reply

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