Indian Summer Chicken Sambar……and you thought it couldn’t get any hotter!!

Good Afternoon Folks,

Finally I have got my Chicken Sambar recipe uploaded!! Check it out..

Lulu xx

This was a favourite curry of mine as a kid, it was not a family recipe but it was something my Mum would always order from the local Indian take away!! It was good, spicy, lemony and tasty. Not many places would have this on the menu but my Mum would always ask if they could make it especially for her, the answer was usually yes!

A few years ago I remembered this curry and decided to recreate it. I researched sambar which is a lentil curry using sambar masala spice; usually a vegetarian dish. However I always remembered Lemon being a vital ingredient, and we always had it with Chicken in, so this is my recipe of the sambar I had as a kid….


Serves 4/5


(In England I would usually use the seeds for this dish roast them then grind them up, here in Spain it is difficult to get hold of  lot of the spices, you can find them but not as soon as you need them! So this time I have used the ground spices, it still tasted good)

Chicken I used thighs x 10. You can use any Chicken, but I prefer with the bone as it will be less dry than the breast. If you do not like meat on the bone  you can remove it before cooking.

265g Chana Dhal Lentils/Yellow Split Pea (dried)

2 Pints Hot Water for the Lentils plus 200ml for the curry

2 tbsp Coriander Powder

1 tbsp Cumin Powder

1 tsp Turmeric

2 tsp Fenugreek Powder

1 dsp Tamarind Paste

1 tbsp Black Mustard Seeds

1 tbsp Curry Leaves

1 tsp Crushed Black Peppercorn

4 Garlic Cloves

2″ Chunk Ginger

3/4 Small Tomatoes

1 Red Chilli (optional)

1 Onion Diced

1 Large Lemon/ 2 small un-waxed

Handful Fresh Coriander Chopped

1 1/2  tbsp Oil for frying



First you need to cook your lentils. Place them into a pan with plenty of salt, then pour in boiling hot water, just enough to cover the lentils. Turn heat high and let it bubble away. Be careful this does not burn and keep stirring, adding more hot water if needed. I used 2 pints in the end but you may not need that much or you may need a little more.

The idea is for the lentils to be soft almost mushy and the liquid to be thick, we are not draining this water away, this becomes the liquid of the curry.


Let the lentils bubble away

Whilst the lentils are boiling prepare your curry.

In a hand blender blitz up the garlic, ginger, chilli and the fresh tomatoes to a paste.



Set this paste aside.

Heat your oil up in a deep pan and add in the mustard seeds and the curry leaves.


The mustard seeds will start to pop, when they do add in your onions and turn the heat to medium.


Cook the onions until they are soft then add in the dry spices and stir.



Now pop in the chicken and coat in all of the spices, add a good pinch of salt.

Once coated add in the tamarind and the paste you have set aside and stir well.

Let the chicken brown a little and turn white.

Add 200ml hot water or just enough to just cover the chicken in the pan, try not to put too much liquid in as we still have the lentil juice to go in. Chop half of the large lemon into wedges (or one small lemon) and add to pan, squeeze the juice in of the other half.

Put a lid on and let it cook on a medium heat for 25 minutes.



Whilst this is cooking check on your lentils; taste one to see how soft they are, if they still have a bite add a little more hot water and keep it bubbling away.


Lentils need a little longer

Once the lentils are cooked and nice and soft set aside.

After the 25 minutes check the curry, taste it and see if it needs more seasoning. The chicken should be tender and falling from the bone, if not let it cook for 10 minutes longer.


Once cooked add in the lentils and all of the liquid, stir well.


Then add your chopped coriander. Stir well.




Serve with Pilau rice and your favourite Indian breads….we had parathas!!


The lemons should be so soft you can eat the whole thing!!


Very Tasty!

Enjoy ❤ xxx





3 thoughts on “Indian Summer Chicken Sambar……and you thought it couldn’t get any hotter!!

  1. Polly Andrews says:

    Can I make a request that you put the ingredients and method in a printer friendly version, as I’d love to try this but don’t really want to print out all your lovely pics..x x

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