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August 17, 2016

Easy Hotel Sambar Recipe – How To Make Restaurant Style Idli Sambar

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Easy hotel sambar recipe for idli

This is an easy version of hotel sambar recipe for idli without making hotel sambar powder. Usually I make Tamil nadu Hotel style idli sambar adding freshly roasted and ground spices. To make my job easier, I started making Idli sambar powder in bulk and use it to my need. 

Few months back, I watched Venkatesh Bhat’s hotel style idli sambar recipe in Samayal Samayal cookery show. It is a simplified & quick version of restaurant style idli sambar without any grinding job. As I had already tried Kerala ulli sambar recipe (Vengaya sambar), I found this recipe very close to it. So I tried it confidently.

As expected, it came out really well. I started making it regularly with my own modifications. This has become Raksha’s favorite idli sambar. It tastes good for all tiffin recipes like Idli, dosa, vada, Pongal and rice upma as well. For variations and to make it more healthy for your kids, you can add vegetables like potato, carrot & use few pieces of pumpkin instead of jaggery to give a natural sweetness in sambar. 

This sambar tastes mildly tangy and spicy which makes it drinkable. So you can dunk your idlis in this sambar and enjoy eating it ! If you like the taste of this sambar, you can use this sambar recipe for making mini idli sambar and sambar vadai. Try this easy version of idli sambar and prepare a quick side dish for idli, dosa during busy morning hours. Ok, lets see how to make hotel style idli sambar in an easy way !

Check out my other Idli Sambar varieties too !

restaurant style idli sambar

Hotel Style Idli sambar Recipe

Hotel Style Idli sambar Recipe Hotel style idli sambar recipe - Quick version
Cuisine: South Indian
Category: Side dish For Idli, dosa
Serves: 3
Prep time: 10 Minutes
Cook time: 20 Minutes
Total time: 30 Minutes

1 cup - 250ml
  • Toor Dal - 1/4 cup
  • Moong dal - 1 tbsp
  • Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
  • Cooking oil - few drops
  • Water - 2 cups
  • Big onion - 1 no (cubed) Or shallots/small onion - 10nos
  • Ripe tomato - 2 nos (Small sized, Do not chop it, use whole tomato)
  • Asafetida/Hing - a big pinch
  • Curry leaves - few
  • Grated jaggery - 1/2 tsp
  • Besan flour – 1 tsp
To temper
  • Cooking oil or ghee - 1 tbsp ( Use ghee for best taste)
  • Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
  • Methi seeds - 1/8 tsp( 5nos)
  • Cumin seeds - 1/4 tsp
  • Urad dal - 1/2 tsp
  • Sambar powder - 1 tbsp
  • Red chilli powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Dhania powder – 1 tsp
Ghee  - 1 tsp & coriander leaves - to garnish

** Skip onion to make no onion, no garlic idli sambar
** Use 3 pumpkin cubes along with dal to get natural sweetness in sambar.
**Add mixed vegetables like carrot & potato with dal to make it more healthy.Use one tomato if its bigger in size or sour in taste .

  • Wash and take the toor dal, moong dal in a pressure cooker base. Add 2 cups of water and let it soak for few minutes till you chop onions. Chop the onion and add to the cooker. Add 2 small or one big whole tomato ( Do not chop the tomato because dal may not cook mushy), turmeric powder, curry leaves, hing and few drops of cooking oil. Add enough water and cook the dal in low flame for 2 whistles. Remove the lid after the steam is released. Mash the dal + tomato very well. Make sure dal is well cooked and mashed well.
Hotel style idli sambar recipe
  • Dilute besan flour in 1/4 cup of water and add to the cooked dal ( ** Adding besan flour helps to get a creamy texture to this sambar and blends well with dal).  Add jaggery. Mix well. In a kadai, heat ghee.  Keep the flame low. Splutter mustard seeds, methi seeds, urad dal, cumin seeds & sambar powder, red chilli powder and dhania powder. Saute for few seconds without burning sambar powder. Do not change its color. 
  • Add the mashed dal + besan flour mixture to the kadai. Boil the sambar for  few minutes by adding chopped coriander leaves and 1 tsp ghee. Check for taste, Add salt or red chilli powder if  needed for spicy taste. Boil for one more minute. Switch off the flame, cover the sambar with a lid and give a standing time of one hour before serving. This sambar thickens when it cools down.So add 1/2 cup water to adjust its thickness and check for salt. Reheat it if you wish and then serve.
    Hotel style idli sambar recipe
  • Enjoy with hot idli, dosa & pongal. Drizzle a tsp of sesame oil or ghee if you like !

Try this easy version of hotel idli sambar at home and enjoy with piping hot idlis !
You will love it !
restaurant style sambar for idli

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Praveen said...

Thanks for the recipe. I tried & it's delicious. Loved the sambar.good job

Chitra said...

Thank you so much 😊

Anu said...

Sambar was very easy to make and tasty yoo

Chitra said...

Thank you so much for the feedback 😊

Chitra said...

Hi, yes. I used my own sambar powder. You can use any 😊

Chitra said...


Rathi said...

This is a wonderful recipe and a family favorite. Thank you Chitra ma'am.

Chitra said...

Happy to see your feedback. Thank you so much 😊