Sambar Masala - Health Benefits, Uses and Important Facts

Sambar Masala - Health Benefits, Uses and Important Facts

Sambar Masala is a flavorful, coarsely-textured spice powder used in South Indian cuisine. It is made by grinding various spices like coriander seeds, cumin seeds, mustard seeds, black peppercorns, dry red chilies, fenugreek seeds, cinnamon and dry coconut with chana dal. Sambar powder imparts a unique flavour to the dish and is an essential ingredient in many South Indian recipes.


Sambar masala powder should be kept in an airtight container at room temperature, out of direct sunlight. If you acquire this powder in large quantities, avoid the temptation to keep opening the main container on a daily basis. Set aside a token amount for daily use and top it as needed. This will keep the fragrance fresh for longer.


Along with rasam powder, sambar powder/sambhar podi is an indispensable ingredient in south Indian Tamil cooking. You may use two or three different kinds of lentils, whole spices like cumin, coriander, and red chilli peppers, turmeric powder, and a herb like curry leaves to make this delicious dish. To make the incredibly tasty dal known as sambar or kuzhambu, it is combined with cooked lentils, veggies, and tamarind.

Table of Contents

What is Sambhar?


Sambar is a staple of South Indian cuisine. The question of where it came from has spawned several speculations. The meal is said to have been prepared in a rush for Sambhaji son of Shahaji Maharaj in Thanjavur, according to certain accounts. Even earlier than that, in Tamil manuscripts from 1530 CE, a meal very similar to sambar is mentioned as a side dish for rice.


Sambar is a stew made of lentils and various vegetables like moringa, tomatoes, onions, brinjal, radishes, lady fingers, carrots, and colocasia. Tamarind pulp and an aromatic blend of coriander, chilies, cumin, black pepper, curry leaves, fenugreek, turmeric, and asafoetida are used to impart flavour.


Depending on your location, the masala could even have coconut in it, either fresh or dried. Some masala recipes also use garlic, which is often met with resistance, but is common in other parts of the country.


Home-made sambhar masala:


Sambar powder, also called sambar masala or sambar podi in Tamil, is quite easy to make at home and produces fantastic results. The dry masala (spice mix) that you can easily produce at home is more tasty than the kind you can purchase in the store, and it has a rich, fragrant scent to boot!


Ingredients of sambhar powder:


Here are some of the more common ones:


  1. Coriander
  2. Rice
  3. Poppy Seeds
  4. Chilies
  5. Fenugreek
  6. Mustard Seeds
  7. Seeds of Cumin
  8. Salt
  9. Asafoetida
  10. Cinnamon


Because of these components, the spice combination is potent and spicy, with a robust aroma. However, different combinations have varying degrees of heat.


Nutritional value of sambhar masala:


  1. Protein-14.17gm
  2. Fat-15.07gm
  3. Total Carbohydrates- 47.26gm
  4. Fiber- 15.2gm
  5. Iron- 4.69gm
  6. Sodium- 212.60gm
  7. Calcium- 333.33 gm


How to store sambhar powder?


  • The powdered form of sambar masala should be stored in an airtight container away from direct sunlight at room temperature.
  • Don't get into the habit of opening the main container every day if you buy this powder in bulk.
  • Keep a small quantity aside for daily usage and replenish as required. This will ensure that the scent is preserved for as long as possible.
  • You should use this powder up before it expires in 12 months.


Health benefits of sambhar masala


Sambar masala contains a variety of spices and herbs that are high in nutrients, including coriander, pepper, turmeric, chilli powder, cumin, curry leaves, asafoetida, and fenugreek. In tiny doses, the combo has been shown to have positive health effects.


The curcumin in the turmeric is made more bioavailable by the pepper in the spice blend.


The health benefits of the lentil foundation, tamarind, and vegetable combination are further enhanced by the addition of sambar masala. Sambar powder or sambar masala may have the following health advantages.


  • High in anti-oxidants
  • dampens inflammation
  • contains cancer-fighting ingredients
  • Benefits include possible enhancements to digestive health, assistance in weight loss, and maybe decreased blood sugar levels.
  • Boosts cardiovascular health
  • Immune system booster


Sambar masala has several positive health effects


  1. Full of healthy antioxidants: A diet high in antioxidants has been shown to provide anti-aging, eye-protecting, blood-sugar-lowering, heart-protecting, immune-boosting, and cancer-preventing effects. Antioxidant properties can be attributed to the sambar masala spices. chemicals including curcumin, piperine, tannins, flavonoids, vitamin C, and carotenoids.

  1. Combats cancer: Several active ingredients found in turmeric (curcumin), pepper (piperine), red chilli peppers (capsanthin), and red chilies (terpinene, quercetin, and tocopherols) have been shown to inhibit the growth of malignant cells and even kill cancer cells. Asafoetida may possibly have a role in preventing cancer by inhibiting the spread of cancer cells. An investigation into the effects of sambar on colon cancer in rats yielded positive results.

  1. Great for heart health: Possibility of enhanced cardiovascular health Sambar powder contains antioxidants that are great for your heart since they originate from the cumin, turmeric, black pepper, asafoetida, and coriander. Fenugreek ability to reduce blood sugar, cholesterol, and triglycerides is one way it benefits cardiovascular health.


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