Pottukadalai Sambar/Thidir Sambar/Instant Sambar

Today's recipe is an interesting sambar with no lentils/dhal can be made in a jiffy without compromising the taste of the regular sambar.This sambar is a perfect accompaniment for tiffin items such as idly,dosa and especially venpongal,can be made with or without veggeis.This recipe I adapted from a regional T.V cookery show and made it many times but never get a chance to click it as I mostly made it for dinner to accompany venpongal.Finally I made it for yesterday brunch and clicked it.
This sambar has become our family' favorite especially my 15 months lil one likes a lot,may be I had this sambar a lot during my pregnancy.Lets move on to the recipe..............

Basic Information

Preparation time ~ 10 minutes
Cooking time ~ 25 minutes
Serves ~ 3-4


Onion (medium size)1(chopped)
Round small brinjal/kathirrikai1(chopped)
Carrot(medium size)1(chopped)
Tomato(medium size)1(chopped)
Turmeric powder1/2tsp
Curry leaves1 sprig
Corinader leaves/kothamalli2 sprigs(chopped)
Tamarind/pulismall gosseberry size
Green chilly/pachamilagai2-3

 To Saute and grind

Red chilly/varamilagai4-5
Coriander seeds/varakothamalli1tbs
Shallots/chinna vangayam4-5
Tomato(chopped) 1/2(medium size)
Roasted gram dhal/pottukadalai2tbs

For the tempering

Mustard seeds/kadugu1/2tsp
Urad dhal/ulutham paruppu1/2tbs
Red chilly1(broken)
Asafoetida/perungayam a pinch


Heat a tsp of oil and fry the red chillies and coriander seeds,then add the shallots follows the tomato,roasted gram dhal and coconut fry it for a minute and put off the fire.Grind it to a smooth paste after cooling,extract the tamarind and keep it aside.

Now heat a pan with oil and do the tempering with the ingredients,add the curry leaves,onion and green chilly.Saute it,then goes in the chopped veggies,fry it for a minute.Add the chopped tomato and cook it until mushy.

Now add the tamarind water and let it boil for a minute.Add the ground paste and 2 cups of water,mix it well.Add the salt and turmeric powder,let it boil till the raw smell goes off in a medium flame.Finally add the coriander leaves and put off the flame.

Pottukadalai sambar is ready.

Serve it with idly,pongal or dosa.


  • After adding the ground paste mix it well otherwise it may stick to the bottom.
  • As roasted gram dhal is used the sambar will be  thick so adjust the consistency accordingly.
  • This sambar can be made with shallots and no veggies,it tastes good.

This recipe is off to Cook Book Challenge #4 January week 1. 


super tempting clicks.. My mum does it too..

All the stepwise pictures are so neat nalini. cute...

good too good.. have tasted this when i prepare saravana bhavan sambhar.. with slight variations.

Loved this recipe ,Never heard of it.Bookamrked

My mom used to make this as well especially when the guests come in the morning unannounced with idlis. I simply love it so much.

Wow... never heard of them, and yes they are fastly made. Bookmarking them :)

never knew sambar can be made with pottu kadalai.. wl try.. nice clicks.. :)

nevery heard about this. Very instant sambar. and nice well explained clicks.

i never heard of this will try soon.looks temepting!

Very new recipe to me. Super tempting and inviting sambar.

Looks so nice.I was looking for this kind of recipe.will try for sure

Lovely pictures Nalini, I made this sambar sometime back and loved it..

very unique recipe dear, never heard of it. Clicks look superb chanceilla :) so beautifully captured

Delicious recipe. I'm sure it tastes great with tiffin, Nalini!

Delicious Sambar.. Love that it can be made instantly..

simple and delicious sambhar aks...surely give it try soon... Yummy presentation...

this is new and looks delicious... will try sometime

Using ground roasted gram dal in sambar is a great idea. Will have to try this recipe soon.

Iam going to try this this weekend..It luks really yum and :love the serving bucket :)

Can we omit the coconut in this recipe

As there's no dhal/lentils in the sambar,coconut and roasted gram dhal only gives the consistency and taste to the sambar.I never tried without coconut.But you can try it without coconut also.

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