The humble sambar is made in many ways across the four states of South India. Today we will show you the most popular version of Tamil Nadu. In Tamil Nadu, the sambars made in restaurants are considered as the benchmark to define standard. They call it ‘Hotel Sambar’, partly due to the vocabulary influence of the British that ruled the land once.
A year ago we were in Kumbakonam and chanced upon an old eatery called ‘Hotel Venkataramana‘. This happened to be the only place in the whole of Kumbakonam that served dosas around noon. Not only did they make great dosas, they made an exceptional sambar as well. If we were to benchmark the quality of our hotel sambar recipe, we will choose Venkataramana as our challenger.
To make great sambar, you will need a good quality sambar powder. Checkout our sambar powder recipe here and follow the instructions as is if you are serious about tasting one of the greatest sambars man has ever made. Our hotel sambar recipe will yield two to three servings with 372 kilocalories in each. To make our hotel sambar recipe, you will need the following ingredients,
Ingredients, Measurements & Nutritional Values
|To Pressure Cook|
|Pigeon Pea (Toor dal)||100 grams|
|For Tamarind Extract|
|Tamarind Pulp||A small ball|
|Hot water||300 ml|
|Sunflower oil||1 tablespoon|
|Curry leaves||A sprig|
|Dried red chilli||1|
|Urad dal||1 teaspoon|
|Mustard seeds||1 teaspoon|
|Cumin seeds||1 teaspoon|
|Sambar powder||1 tablespoon|
Click on the nutritional chart below to zoom
- Protein in pigeon pea besides being an energy source promotes cellular growth.
- Folic acid in pigeon pea is essential for fetal development and can help to prevent neural tube birth defects such as spina bifida.
- The antioxidants in shallots produce a compound called as allicin. Allicin helps to reduce cell mutation and various cancers.
- The dietary fiber content of tamarind makes it a natural laxative.
Video Walk Through : Hotel Sambar Recipe
Instructions To Use Our Hotel Sambar Recipe
Prep Tamarind Extract
- Add a small ball of tamarind pulp to a mixing bowl.
- Pour hot water over the tamarind pulp and allow it to soak for 30 minutes.
- 30 minutes later, press and squeeze the extracts out of the pulp.
- Filter the solids and discard. We would need about a cup of tamarind extract to make sambar.
Prep Pigeon Peas
- Dry roast pigeon peas (toor dal ) and soak them in water for 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes discard the water and wash the pigeon peas thoroughly.
- Add enough water and pressure cook pigeon peas with carrots and tomatoes for 15 to 30 minutes. Allow the pressure to release naturally.
- Once the pressure is released, transfer the pressure cooked pigeon peas to a blender. Blitz into a smooth paste and set aside.
- Set a sauce pan or pot on medium heat.
- Add sunflower oil.
- Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, black gram ( urad dal ), asafoetida and dried red chillies. Splutter them for a minute.
- Add curry leaves, garlic cloves (optional), shallots and saute for 3 minutes.
- Pour the pressure cooked pigeon pea paste into the pot and add salt to your taste.
- Add sambar powder and mix for a minute. One or two tablespoons of sambar powder should be good. You decide based on the heat or spice level you could tolerate.
- Add the tamarind extract and mix well. Simmer on medium heat for 15 minutes and turn off the heat.
Serve the sambar hot with a wide range of things such as rice, idli, dosa and roti. You can also drink sambar like a soup.
Hotel Sambar Recipe, another healthy recipe, the hissing cooker way.