I personally think that this is the best kinda sambhar. My mom and grandmother came up with this recipe. I am sure that you will find this recipe worth the try! It is a great accompaniment with rice, idlis, dosais etc...
Small Onions / kutty vengayam/shallots/ pearl onions/baby onions (1 cup)
2 green chillies
3 red chillies
1 sp dhaniya/coriander seeds
3 tsp coconut grated
Tamarind(1 lemon sized ball extract)
curry leaves-1 sprig
Oil 4 tsp
Methi seeds 1/8 tsp
Turmeric 1/4 sp
Hing 4-5 dashes
Jaggery 1/8 tsp,
toor dal 1/4 cup
Add some oil in a kadai. Splutter mustard seeds, methi seeds. Add curry leaves. Add the onions and tomato. pieces. Saute well. Add the red chillies and green chillies.
After a few min, pick up 2-3 pieces of onions and tomatoes and all the red chillies. Place in a separate cup. Add 1 sp dhaniya(raw) and coconut gratings to the cup along with these pieces of onions, tomatoes and red chillies. Grind them to a wet paste with water. Keep this masala aside.
Pressure cook toor dal. Now in the kadai, which contains the remaining onions, tomatoes and green chillies, add the extract of tamarind, hing, turmeric,salt, 1 sp of sambhar powder. Add the wet paste and let it boil atleast for 20 min. Add the cooked dal and simmer. Add 1/8 tsp jaggery. Garnish with coriander leaves.