Plant Based Dishes

Arichuvitta Mullangi Sambar | How to make aromatic radish sambhar | Vegan, GF Side dish

Arichuvitta sambhar (loosely translated as spiced paste – lentil sambhar / stew- but not really capturing the essence of an authentic dish) is the centrepiece of a tambrahm meal – be it everyday menu or on festival / special occasion. Altho sambhar (the tamilnadu tiffin sambhar or the Karnataka darshini / udupi sambhar ) is used with Idli / tiffin / breakfast items, a different version is made for lunch or dinner to be had with rice .  

Either homemade sambhar powderfor an instant mixed-veg sambhar is used or a special combo of spices come together in an aromatic paste for the latter. So this special ground masala works great with most veggies like shallots (chinna vengayam), bell-pepper  (kodamilagai) and radish (mullangi) or even brinjal / aubergine ????(katrikkai)


Paired with Jayshree for this month’s edition of sshhh secret cooking challenge, she gave me red chillies and toor dal as the secret ingredients .  At our house, we usually avoid using mullangi (radish), onion and garlic on Ekadasi, amavasya (new moon day) and any festival days. But the rest of the month, we make this mulling sambar or chinna vengayam (pearl onion / shallots) for our Sunday brunch. Jayashree made Idli Milagai podi with the ingredients I gave her – Urad dal and Chillies

Radish is undoubtedly a diabetic -friendly veggie but many people don’t like to eat it we love this sambhar as well as the raw mullangi salad (aka kosambari) or even raita made with fresh radish. I also love the Mullangi Palya (radish stir fry)that we make during winters with fresh, juicy radish. 

Let’s see how to make this aromatic sambhar. I made it twice this month, first time I served it with Kothavarangai curry and the second time with some Chow chow poriyal + some bombay mixture. 

Prep time – 20 Mins, cook time – 15 Mins, serves -4 ~5 adults


What you need:

Toor dal / pigeon pea – 1/2 cup (1 cup -250 ml)

Turmeric – 1/4 tsp 

Oil – 2 tsp (divided use)

Fresh radish – 1/4 kg or 2 medium radishes



For spices masala paste:

Coriander seeds – 2 tbsp

Jeera – 1 tsp

Methi seeds- 1/2 tsp

Channa dal / Bengal gram – 1 tbsp 

Tamarind – small gooseberry size

Raw rice – 1 tsp 

Red chillies – 4 -6 (adjust spice)

Freshly grated coconut – 1/4 cup

Asafoetida –  generous pinch (skip for GF)


Mustard seeds, curry leaves, 1/2 tsp oil


How to:

Pressure Cook toor dal with turmeric till mushy and keep aside. In the same cooker but in a separate container , cook radish (lightly peeled and cut into thick roundels).

While the veggies and toor dal are cooking, make the masala paste – in a pan, add 1 tsp of oil and roast all the ingredients for the paste in the order mentioned till aromatic (on a low flames only) 

Once the red chillies are fried a bit, switch off the flame and add the  coconut and asafoetida. Let this mixture cool. Add 1/3 cup of water and make a thickish well ground paste.

In the same kadai / large pan, add rest of the oil and sauté the paste for 2-4 mins till oil starts separating, now Add salt to taste, cooked toor dal and adjust more water to a pouring sambhar consistency. Now add the cooked radish and let it simmer for 3-4 mins more. 

Make the tempering with oil, mustard seeds and curry leaves and pour on top.

Serve sambhar hot with rice / ragi sankati / brown rice + veggies for a soulful meal   




  1. I totally love the spice paste that is used in an arachuvitta sambar. This reminds me that it's been long since I have made it. I love it with pearl onions, and radish also sounds like a delicious idea…

  2. Never used spice paste for making Sambhar, though I use my homemade Sambhar Masala. This sounds so flavourful with fresh coconut.. Loved the recipe!!

  3. I love using radish in sambar, especially of the 'arachuvitta' style. The freshly ground spices take the flavour of the sambar up by several times! 🙂

  4. Poonam Bachhav

    Your sambar with radish and freshly ground spice mix sounds flavorful and aromatic ! Perfect pair with steamed rice.

  5. Radish sambhar looks flavourful and delicious. Loved the use of fresh masala paste. I can imagine the aroma.

  6. Vasusvegkitchen

    Radish sambar is one of my favorite but not my hubby's. It is very aromatic, tasty your version looks amazing with freshly grinded masala.

  7. Mayuri Patel

    I would have never thought of using radish in a sambhar. Such a wonderful and flavorful sambhar. Freshly ground spices are the best for any curry.

  8. CookwithRenu

    I have never added radish to a sambar and this looks like cleverly sneaking in the vegetable. Looks delicious with the use of fresh masala

  9. Awesome sambar recipe
    Reminds me off the ragi mudde and mullangi huli combo 🙂

  10. Priya Satheesh

    Adding radish gives a lovely taste to the sambhar and this is our family's favourite dish.. Can feel the flavour of this delicious sambhar.

  11. I definitely want to try making this sambhar with freshly ground masala. Its been on my todo list for ages now. Will taste awesome with rice or idli.

  12. I love sambar and especially arachuvitta sambar. This mullangi sambar looks great. Love to have with some hot rice.

  13. I love arachu vutta sambar..yumm share

  14. Aroma and taste of freshly grounded spices takes the dish to next level and would love to eat with hot hot rice.

  15. Love this mullangi sambar, the taste of it is different and makes a good meal.

  16. mildly indian

    Arachuvitta sambhar has a special flavour and the mullangi in it is my favorite. We called it coin sambhar when we were small.

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