Sambar / Rasam / Kuzhambu Varieties. · Side Dishes for Rotis/Dosas/ Naan.

Hotel Style Tomato Sambar – Side for Dosa / Idlis.

Hotel Sambar.

Yesterday I had a particular craving for the hotel sambar from Saravana Bhavan in Chennai and I could not wish this out of my head. There are days when you are far away from home and you  crave for amma`s chutney , pulikachal or sambar.  This was borne out of an accident in my kitchen yesterday and I decided this was going to be a regular. I meant to make ” Dhal” for parathas and decided I was going to go ahead and make the Hotel Sambar anyways! So i used more moong dal in this dish, and to my surprise, it was almost close to the version of hotel sambar that is replicated at home. I am sure, we can never get the secret of Saravana Bhavan style sambar!!!


1 Medium Onion.

4 Roma Tomatoes/ Vine Tomatoes.

1 Tsp Grand sweets Vethakuzhambu Powder.

1 Tsp Rasam Powder.

1 Tsp Red Chilli Powder.

1 cup Moong Dal cooked mushy.

1/4 Cup Toor Dhal cooked mushy.



Cilantro for garnishing.


1 Tsp Mustard.

1 Tsp Jeera.

Curry Leaves.


  • Cook the Moong Dal in ample water unless its soft and squishy.  Mash well and set aside.
  • In a kadai, add 2 tsp oil and then the seasonings – Mustard, Jeera, Curry Leaves and then the hing.
  • Now add the chopped onions and saute until they are beautiful golden brown colour.
  • Add the chopped tomatoes, salt, turmeric, vethakuzhambu powder, rasam powder, red chilli powder and allow to saute well until all the water is almost evaporated.
  • Now add the mushy moong dal and toor dal  to the kadai and a little more water and some more salt for the dals added.
  • Swirl on a little bit until its gets to a nice sambar like consistency and garnish with chopped cilantro.
  • Enjoy Hotel style Tomato Sambar with crisp Ragi Dosas or Soft Fluffy Idlis.