Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)

Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)

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Like idlis and dosas, Sambhar is also an all-time favourite that is almost synonymous with South Indian food! From the smallest roadside hotel to the classiest Indian restaurants around the globe, ‘idli, Vada, Sambhar’ is a very popular breakfast combo!

So, here is how to make the perfect Sambhar to match the perfect Idlis / Dosas / Appe . Loaded with vegetables and dal, this flavourful side-dish is very sumptuous and tasty, leaving no doubt about why it is so popular.

You can relish it not just with the innumerable South Indian snacks and Breakfast dishes, but also with a plain bowl of hot rice topped with a dollop of ghee or laced with til oil.

The best part about Sambhar is that, while it tastes best when hot, it is quite enjoyable even after a few hours, so it can be carried to work, or prepared in advance on a busy day.

Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas) recipe - How to make Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)

Preparation Time:    Cooking Time:    Total Time:     Makes 4 to 6 servings
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For The Sambhar Masala (makes 1/4 Cup)
5 red chillies (pandi) , broken into pieces
1/2 tsp chana dal (split bengal gram)
1/2 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)
1/2 tsp fenugreek (methi) seeds
1/2 tsp black peppercorns (kalimirch)
2 tbsp coriander (dhania) seeds

Other Ingredients
1/2 cup toovar (arhar) dal , washed and drained
1/4 tsp turmeric powder (haldi)
1/4 tsp asafoetida (hing)
1 cup red pumpkin (bhopla / kaddu) cubes
1/2 cup potato cubes
1/2 cup tomato cubes
1/2 cup onion cubes
1/2 cup drumstick pieces (each cut into 2") and slit green chillies
1 tbsp tamarind (imli) pulp
1 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp mustard seeds ( rai / sarson)
4 to 5 curry leaves (kadi patta)
1 red chilli (pandi) , broken into pieces
1 tbsp finely chopped coriander (dhania)

For the sambhar masala

    For the sambhar masala
  1. Combine all the ingredients in a small non-stick pan and dry roast on a medium flame for 2 to 3 minutes, while stirring continuously.
  2. Allow the mixture to cool completely, once cooled blend in a mixer to a smooth powder. Keep aside.

How to proceed

    How to proceed
  1. Combine the toovar dal, turmeric powder, asafoetida and 1½ cups of water in a pressure cooker and pressure cook for 3 whistles.
  2. Allow the steam to escape before opening the lid. Whisk the dal well.
  3. Combine the whisked dal, vegetables, salt and 1½ cups of water in a deep non-stick pan, mix well and cover with a lid and cook on a medium flame for 20 to 25 minutes, while stirring occasionally.
  4. Add the tamarind pulp, 1 cup of water and the prepared sambhar masala, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 5 minutes, while stirring occasionally.
  5. Add the coriander and mix well. Keep aside.
  6. Heat the oil in a small non-stick pan ,add the mustard seeds.
  7. When the seeds crackle, add the curry leaves and red chillies and saute on a medium flame for a few seconds.
  8. Add this tempering to the prepared sambhar and mix well.
  9. Serve hot.
Nutrient values (Abbrv) per serving
Energy122 cal
Protein5.1 g
Carbohydrates18 g
Fiber3 g
Fat3.4 g
Cholesterol0 mg
Sodium11.3 mg


Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)
 on 16 Jun 17 11:26 PM

nice and easy way to learn
Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)
 on 04 Jun 17 11:20 AM

superb mast
Tarla Dalal
05 Jun 17 02:03 PM
   Thanks for the feedback.
Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)
 on 14 May 17 10:19 PM

Best way to describe this sambar: a flavor explosion! I''m an American-born Bengali living in California. While I love Bengali food, our typical daily masoor daal preparation tends to be bland. The taste of Ms. Dalal''s sambar is wonderfully complex and worth the time it takes to roast the spices and procure curry leaf and (frozen) drumsticks from the Indian store. For cooks in the US, read Ms. Dalal''s explanation of drumsticks and you''ll understand why you won''t want to omit these ingredients. I used kabocha (Japanese pumpkin) for the red pumpkin - delicious. Thank you, Ms. Dalal!
Tarla Dalal
15 May 17 09:19 AM
   Really overwhelmed and delighted to hear that Shimi. Do keep trying more and more recipes and share you feedback. Happy Cooking!!!
Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)
 on 20 Sep 16 01:51 AM

Tried it,really tasted good as if we were@ a hotel
Tarla Dalal
20 Sep 16 09:52 AM
   Hi, We are very happy to know you loved the recipe. Do try more and more recipes and let us know how they turned out. Happy Cooking !!
Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)
 on 22 Jul 16 02:21 PM

Hi I liked sambar it was a perfect one and superb
Tarla Dalal
22 Jul 16 02:41 PM
   Hi Sharmi, we are delighted you loved the Sambhar recipe and it came out perfectly. Please keep posting your thoughts and feedback and review recipes you have loved. Happy Cooking.
Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)
 on 14 Jul 16 06:01 PM

Its really good previous i purchase one handy book on IDALI & dosa. That time i tried its really good
Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)
 on 14 Jul 16 05:58 PM

Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)
 on 04 May 16 07:47 PM

Not bad but it''s as usual not so special.
Tarla Dalal
05 May 16 03:02 PM
   Hi Tushar, this is a traditional sambhar recipe, which is generally cooked in south indian household. Do give a try to this recipe. Happy Cooking!!
Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)
 on 06 Jan 16 08:36 PM

Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)
 on 06 Jan 16 08:11 PM