Bendekai sambar/ Okra sambar:

Sambar is a very essential part of south Indian meal. In Mangalore region, we normally use freshly roasted and ground coconut masala for vegetables as well as each vegetable has its own suitable masala recipe.

Normally, the main ingredients will be the same and here and there some additional ingredients or frying techniques will be different.

In this particular recipe, we don’t use coconut as it is.  Masala is fried as well as coconut and made into powder form and added. It is very flavourful and tasty.

We normally use heirloom variety of Bendekai/ ladies’ finger /Okra for sambar. This masala tastes very good even with small variety dark green bhindi as well.


Bendekai/Bhindi /Okra – ½ kg

Toor dal – ½ cup

Tamarind – size of a small lemon

Green chillies – 2


Jaggery – 1 tsp

Methi – ¼ tsp

Coriander seeds – 1 tablespoon

cumin – 1tsp

Urad dal – 1 ½ tsp

Dried Red chillies – 2 to 3

Curry leaves – 1 spring

Coconut – ½  to ¾ cup

For the seasoning:

Coconut oil – 1 tsp

Mustard – ½ tsp

Red chilli – 1

Curry leaves – 1 spring


-Cook toor dal and keep aside.

-Soak tamarind, boil with little added water, salt, jaggery, slit green chillies.

-When it starts boiling, add chopped bhindi. Allow to cook in a low flame.

-To avoid sliminess,  don’t close the lid or put a spoon to mix while boiling bhindi.

-In the meantime, prepare masala. Heat coconut oil, fry methi, add coriander, cumin , urad dal, red chillies and fry until all the spices are roasted.

-Next add curry leaves, coconut ,turmeric and fry until you get a nice aroma.

-Cool and make a powder of roasted coconut mix and keep aside.

-When bhindi is cooked, add dhal, masala powder and boil nicely by adding sufficient water to adjust the consistency.

-Do the seasoning and serve with hot rice.