Sambar is a delicious curry made with lentils and vegetables. It is very popular in south India and is made in most South Indian homes. Sambar can be served with idlis, dosas, rice, upma, pongal, vadai, etc. I have already shared recipes of making sambar like masoor dal sambar, toor dal sambar, etc in my earlier posts and today, I am going to share an easy recipe of making Saravana bhavan style sambar.

Saravana bhavan is a popular vegetarian hotel in Chennai. It has branches in other places as well. I am a great fan of saravana bhavan sambar, and so I decided to make Saravana bhavan style sambar at home. The main ingredients that make it different are roasted gram and coconut. I served this sambar with Rava Idli and it tasted simply fabulous. Do try out the recipe. I am sure you will like it.


To pressure cook
½ cup toor dal (washed and soaked in water for half an hour)
¼ tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp red chilli powder
4 to 5 cloves garlic
1 small tomato deseeded

To grind
1 tbsp fried gram
1 tbsp coconut (grated or paste)

For tempering
2 tbsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
12 to 14 small onion/ shallots
4 dry red chillies
A handful of curry leaves
½ tsp fenugreek seeds
Pinch of asafetida
1 tomato chopped
1 and ½ tsp sambar powder
2 tbsp ghee
Small ball of tamarind (lemon size)
1 drumstick cut into small pieces
1 carrot cut into small pieces

  • Wash and soak the tamarind in warm water for 10 to 15 minutes. Extract the tamarind pulp and keep ready
  • Drain the water from the toor dal and add the dal along with turmeric powder, red chilli powder, garlic cloves, tomato and 2 cups of water to a pressure cooker.
  • Cook for about 6 whistles. Once the pressure subsides, open the lid and gently mash it.
  • Boil the carrots and drumstick in a pan with water for about 10 minutes or till cooked.
  • Grind the roasted gram and coconut with some water to a smooth paste.
  • Add this paste along with tamarind pulp and salt to the dal. Add the cooked vegetables and water if necessary and bring to a boil.
  • Meanwhile heat another pan with oil, add mustard seeds and cumin seeds and allow it to sputter.
  • Then add shallots, curry leaves, red chilies, and fenugreek seeds and sauté for some time
  • Next add the chopped tomato and sauté till it turns mushy.
  • Now add sambar powder, asafetida and mix well.
  • Add this tempering to the dal and mix well.
  • Continue cooking for 2 to 3 minutes and then add 2 tbsp of ghee.
  • Switch off the gas and transfer to serving bowl.
  • Serve hot with idli, rava upma, pongal, dosai, pesarattu or even rice.


Thanks for visiting this blog...
I hope you have found my posts useful. I would be delighted if you could take time and share my posts on your social media channels and like my pages on Facebook and Google plus.
Do send in your comments... And keep visiting :)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...