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Pumpkin Sambar

This Karnataka style Pumpkin sambar is slightly sweet, creamy and absolutely delicious. Serve with steamed rice and a veggie side for a comforting meal.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 15 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Indian, karnataka, south indian
Servings 6 Servings


  • ½ cup Toor or Masoor dal
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 3~4 cups Butternut or Kabocha or Pumpkin, cubed
  • 2 tbsp Grated Fresh Coconut
  • 2 tbsp Sambar powder (homemade or store-bought)
  • 2 tbsp ghee
  • ½ tsp Mustard seeds
  • Pinch of Asafoetida (hing)
  • 6~8 curry leaves
  • 1~2 Dry Red chilies
  • 2 Scallions, chopped
  • 1 tbsp Jaggery or Coconut Sugar or brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp Fresh Lemon juice
  • To taste salt
  • 2 tbsp Cilantro, chopped


  • Preheat the oven to 425°F. Combine squash with oil and salt; spread evenly on a baking sheet. Bake for 20~25 minutes or until lightly browned around the edges. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
  • While the squash is in the oven, cook the lentil/ dal until very soft and mushy.
  • Grind coconut along with sambar powder into a coarse paste. Add half of the roasted squash and grind to a smooth paste.
  • Heat ghee in a saucepan, add the mustard seeds and once they pop, add asafoetida/ hing and cook for few seconds. Add the curry leaves and scallion; saute till they turn soft.
  • Stir in the coconut paste, cooked lentils, reserved roasted squash, jaggery/ coconut sugar and salt. Simmer on medium flame, for 8~10 minutes until the flavors meld. Finally stir in the lemon juice and turn off the flame. Serve warm with rice and a curry.