Best Recipe for Idli Sambar: A Classic South Indian Delight

Best Recipe for Idli Sambar
Best Recipe for Idli Sambar

If you’re a fan of South Indian cuisine, Idli Sambar is a dish that needs no introduction. This classic combination is not only delicious but also healthy, making it a perfect choice for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. In this blog, we’ll guide you through the best recipe for Idli Sambar, ensuring you can recreate this delightful dish in your own kitchen.

Ingredients for Idli

  • 2 cups of rice (preferably idli rice)
  • 1 cup of urad dal (split black gram)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of fenugreek seeds
  • Salt, to taste
  • Water, as needed

Ingredients for Sambar

  • 1 cup of toor dal (pigeon peas)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 2 tablespoons of sambar powder
  • 2 tablespoons of tamarind pulp
  • 1 cup of mixed vegetables (carrots, potatoes, eggplant, drumstick, etc.)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 2 green chilies, slit
  • 1 teaspoon of mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds
  • 1 pinch of asafoetida
  • 2 tablespoons of oil
  • Curry leaves, a handful
  • Coriander leaves, for garnishing
  • Salt, to taste
  • Water, as needed
Best Recipe for Idli Sambar
Best Recipe for Idli Sambar

Step-by-Step Recipe for Idli

  1. Soak the Rice and Dal: Soak the rice and fenugreek seeds together in water for at least 4 hours. Soak the urad dal separately for the same amount of time.
  2. Grind the Batter: Grind the urad dal to a smooth paste, adding water as needed. Similarly, grind the rice and fenugreek seeds to a coarse paste. Mix both pastes together in a large bowl.
  3. Ferment the Batter: Add salt to the batter and mix well. Cover the bowl and let it ferment overnight or for about 8-10 hours in a warm place.
  4. Steam the Idlis: Once the batter is fermented, grease the idli molds and pour the batter into them. Steam the idlis for about 10-12 minutes or until they are cooked through. Let them cool slightly before removing from the molds.

Step-by-Step Recipe for Sambar

  1. Cook the Dal: Rinse the toor dal and cook it in a pressure cooker with turmeric powder and enough water until it is soft and mushy.
  2. Prepare the Vegetables: In a large pot, heat the oil. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and asafoetida. Once they start to splutter, add curry leaves, green chilies, and onions. Sauté until the onions are translucent.
  3. Add Tomatoes and Vegetables: Add the chopped tomatoes and cook until they soften. Then, add the mixed vegetables and sauté for a few minutes.
  4. Add Sambar Powder and Tamarind: Mix in the sambar powder and tamarind pulp. Cook for a couple of minutes to blend the flavors.
  5. Combine Dal and Vegetables: Add the cooked toor dal to the pot along with enough water to reach your desired consistency. Bring the sambar to a boil and let it simmer for about 15-20 minutes until the vegetables are cooked and the flavors are well combined. Season with salt.
  6. Garnish and Serve: Garnish the sambar with fresh coriander leaves. Serve hot with steaming idlis.

Tips for the Perfect Idli Sambar

  • Fermentation: Ensure the batter ferments well to get soft and fluffy idlis. The batter should double in size and have a slightly sour smell.
  • Consistency: The idli batter should be thick but pourable. Adjust water accordingly while grinding.
  • Sambar Variations: Feel free to add any vegetables of your choice to the sambar. Each vegetable adds a unique flavor and texture.
  • Serving: Idli Sambar is best enjoyed hot. Serve with coconut chutney for an added layer of flavor.

Idli Sambar is a nutritious and satisfying meal that brings the authentic taste of South India to your table. Follow this recipe, and you’ll have a delicious and wholesome dish that’s sure to become a family favorite. Enjoy your cooking!


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