Search Chitra's Food Book

December 8, 2012

Idli Sambar Recipe - Hotel Tiffin Sambar

Print Friendly and PDF
Saravana bhavan sambar

When I was searching for idli sambar recipes , I got this one titled as Saravana Bhavan sambar in many blogs & sites. Saravana bhavan is one of the hotels in which I am longing to have my breakfast and dinner. But I have never got a chance Sad. Whenever we go in, it will be crowded and we come out disappointed.Though I have not tasted this sambar, I wanted to try in my kitchen because this recipe is totally new from my usual hotel sambar recipe.No need to make additional powder for sambar.Our usual sambar powder is enough.I have tried the original recipe many times and I felt its less tangy . So I changed the recipe according to our taste buds.Nowadays I am making this sambar regularly for idli & rice upma. It tastes great !

Idli Sambar Recipe - Hotel Style

Idli Sambar Recipe - Hotel Style Hotel Saravana bhavan style Idli Sambar Recipe
Cuisine: South Indian
Category: Side dish for Idli,dosa
Serves: Serves 4
Prep time: 10 Minutes
Cook time: 20 Minutes
Total time: 30 Minutes

1 cup =200ml 
To pressure cook
  • Toor dal – 1/3 cup ( less than 1/2 cup)
  • Hing /Asafetida – a pinch
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Oil – a drop
  • Vegetables – Brinjal , carrot , potato & drumstick ( cook separately and add if using)
  • Tamarind – a small gooseberry size
  • Sugar or jaggery – 1/4 tsp
To saute
  • Sambar onion/ small onion – 10 nos
  • Tomato – 1 no
  • Green chillies – 1 no ( slit)
  • Curry leaves – few
To grind
  • Grated coconut – 1 tbsp
  • Fried gram dal – 1 tbsp
  • Sambar powder - 1 tbsp ( any sambar powder is fine ) OR ( chilli powder – 1.5 tsp + dhania powder – 1.5 tsp)
  • Tomato – 1 no
To temper
  • Cooking oil - 2 tsp
  • Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
  • Urad dal – 1/2 tsp
  • Methi seeds – 1/2 tsp
  • Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp
  • Red chilly – 1 no ( pinched )
  • Hing – 1/4 tsp
To garnish
  • Coriander leaves – few chopped

  • Pressure cook all the ingredients given under “pressure cook”  till mushy.Remove & mix well.( Cook drumstick seperately and add it for best tasting sambar)
Saravana Bhavan sambar
  • Grind all the ingredients adding little water to make a smooth paste.( given under “to grind”)
Saravana Bhavan sambar
  • Add this ground paste and the tamarind extract, salt  to the cooked dal mixture and allow it to boil well till the raw smell emanates.It will thicken.Add water when necessary.
Saravana Bhavan sambar
  • Heat oil & add onions and green chillies , curry leaves and saute till onion turns transparent. Add tomato pieces and saute until mushy.Add this to the boiling sambar. Boil for some more time.Add sugar or jaggery while boiling.Finally temper the ingredients given under “To temper” and add to sambar.Garnish with coriander leaves.& close it with a lid. Serve after 30 minutes.For guests , add a tsp of ghee before serving : ))
    Saravana Bhavan sambar


    • The actual recipe did not use tamarind.As I used Bangalore tomatoes ,I felt its bland. So I added little tamarind extract. If u use Tamil nadu tomato( Naatu thakkali) , tamarind may not be necessary.Make sure the sambar should be mild in tanginess.
    • Tempering at the end gives a nice flavor.If u want u can do this step while sauteing onions.
    • Adding sambar onion gives  a nice taste. U can replace with big onion if u don’t have it.
    • If u wish u can use moong dal or a combination of toor & moong dal.

Try this yummy Saravana bhavan style Idli sambar at home and enjoy your breakfast/dinner !!

Saravana Bhavan sambar

Related Posts


  1. this is one of my fav. breakfast for sure. the sambar looks perfect for a quick meal.

  2. My fav sambar with hot it dear....

  3. Gosh! your sambar looks so tempting...wish I lived near by :(

  4. Delicious Sambar, loved ur clicks...
    Today's Special - Chicken Chettinad Gravy

  5. Fingerlicking flavourful sambhar, can have two more idlies with this sambhar.

  6. Beautiful click... and love sambhar always... Looks inviting

  7. wow!! superbly done!! yummmm..

  8. So flavorful n yummy sambar...will try it sometime!

  9. Tempting sambar,beautiful clicks..

  10. i love sarvana bhawan's sambhar... it is amazing... seems simple here too...

  11. yummm... so inviting chutney n podis..

  12. Love the entire table setting with the chutneys and sambar!!!
    wow so delicious looking!!!
    Ongoing Event - CWF - Whole Wheat Flour
    Ongoing Event - Eggless Bakes and Treats
    Ongoing Event - SYF&HWS - Ginger

  13. Wow...Looks so tempting ...Me too used to make this often...Thanks for sharing...

  14. I love saravana bhavan food. But definitely need a lot of patience to wait there and have their food.. Delicious and flavorful sambhar.. Nice presentation..

  15. looks perfect , love to have with hot idli's :)

  16. Very nice recipe for tiffin sambar. Pictures are superb

  17. I actually like the bubbles in the sambar picture :)The picture itself says the sambar tastes greattttt!

  18. How much water to be added to serve four

    1. Around 3 cups I feel ( 2 cups for cooking dal and 1 cup to boil with tamarind extract). Please adjust the consistency based on your liking.


Thanks for visiting this page..Feel free to leave your comments and feedback.
Anonymous users,please avoid spamming my inbox with your ads.It will be removed.Thanks for understanding.