Coimbatore Annapoorna Hotel Style Sambar Recipe

Recipe for Coimbatore Hotel Annapoorna Sambar. Recipe as told by a cook who worked in the hotel for 27 years. With step by step pictures and video.

I get at least a couple of mails a month asking for Annapoorna sambar recipe as I am from Coimbatore. Everyone in Coimbatore loves the food from this iconic Annapoorna hotel. I am no different. Their Sambar is one of the best. I had tried different recipes but could not nail it. Then this happened. I was talking about my sambar quest to Prema akka (Vinodhs aunt) and she told she knows someone who can give us the recipe. She told me that one Mr. Palinisamy had worked as a cook in their house in the 80’s before moving to Annapoorna as a chef. She told me that she will definitely get hold of him for me. And she did. I met him at a function recently where he was in charge of the kitchen. Mr. Palanisamy is a dhoti clad chef with prominent brown eyes and a big mustache. His eyes are very unique. You will never forget him once you have met him. As soon as I met him, we started talking. He told that he started cooking at the age of 12. He worked at the hotel for 27 years. He now runs his own food and catering service at Coimbatore. His food rocks. If you are in Coimbatore and have a party at home, try Mr. Palanisamy’s food.  You can contact Mr. Palanisamy, Sai Baba catering. His phone number 96984 88764. Another number 9344680106 . His food is as good as home cooked food. If you are having a party in Coimbatore, this is the number you need to be calling.

Video Recipe of Coimbatore Annapoorna Hotel Style Sambar

A note on the quantity of vegetables to the dal.
We are going to use half a cup of toor dal for this recipe, which is 125 ml or roughly about 100 grams. We need to use 200 grams of drumstick for this recipe. About 2 drumsticks.

Wash and soak 1/2 a cup of toor dal in 2 cups of water for 20 minutes. Pressure cook the dal with the water for 6 whistles. Remove from heat and wait for the pressure in the cooker to release naturally. Use the back of the tumbler to mash the dal. Set the dal aside to a bowl.

In another cooker, add in the drumsticks, diced onion, diced shallots (small onion) and tomatoes. Add one cup of water, a teaspoon of salt and a teaspoon of turmeric. Cook for 4 whistles. Remove from heat and wait for the pressure in the cooker to release naturally. Set aside.

Now for the Sambar Masala
Get all the ingredients listed below ready before you proceed. We will need a dozen ingredients namely coriander seeds, cumin seeds, pepper, fenugreek seeds, chana dal, urad dal, curry leaves, dry red chillies, asafoetida, coconut, jaggery and the tamarind.
A note on jaggery and tamarind.
The quantity of jaggery and tamarind has to be equal.

Heat oil in a pan and add in the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, pepper, fenugreek seeds, chana dal and urad dal. Fry for a minute. Once the chana dal is brown, add in the curry leaves, dry red chillies, asafoetida, coconut, jaggery and the tamarind. Fry for 30 seconds. Remove from heat.

Grind the mixture with half a cup of water to a paste. Let the paste be very slightly coarse. Set aside.

Take a heavy bottomed pan and add in the ground masala and one cup of water. Let it come to a boil on medium flame. Once its boiling, add in the cooked vegetables along with the water used for cooking. Add in the salt. Let it boil for 2-3 minutes on medium flame. Add in the cooked dal and let it continue to boil for 2-3 minutes.

When the dal is cooking, we will do the tempering for the sambar. Heat oil in a kadai and add in the mustard seeds when the oil is hot. Add in the curry leaves and switch off the flame. Add in 1/2 teaspoon of red chilli powder and immediately pour it on the sambar. The red chilli powder might burn if kept in the oil for too long. So have an eye on the kadai. Add in the coriander leaves and a tablespoon of ghee. Switch off the flame.

Coimbatore Annapoorna Style Hotel Tiffin Sambar is ready!

Coimbatore Annapoorna Hotel Sambar Recipe
Recipe Type: Side Dish
Cuisine: South Indian, Tamilnadu
Author: Kannamma - Suguna Vinodh
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
Recipe for Coimbatore Hotel Annapoorna Sambar. Recipe as told by a cook who worked in the hotel for 27 years.
Ingredients
  • Measurments Used - 1 Cup = 250 ml
  • For Dal
  • 1/2 cup Toor Dal
  • 2 Cups Water
  • For Veggies
  • 2 Drumsticks
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 10 shallots (small onions), diced
  • 1 Tomato, diced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 cup water
  • For Sambar Masala
  • 2 teaspoon sesame oil (gingely oil)
  • 2 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 5 black pepper corn
  • 5 fenugreek seeds
  • 2 tablespoon chana dal
  • 1 tablespoon urad dal
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 3 dry red chillies (gundu variety)
  • 1/4 teaspoon Asafoetida (hing)
  • 3 tablespoon coconut
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon jaggery
  • gooseberry size tamarind
  • Other ingredients
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 stalks coriander leaves, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon ghee
  • For Tempering
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil (gingely oil)
  • 1/2 teaspoon black mustard seeds
  • 2 sprigs curry leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
Instructions
For Dal
  1. Wash and soak 1/2 a cup of toor dal in 2 cups of water for 20 minutes. Pressure cook the dal with the water for 6 whistles. Remove from heat and wait for the pressure in the cooker to release naturally. Set aside.
For Veggies
  1. In another cooker add in the drumsticks, diced onion, diced shallots (small onion) and tomatoes. Add one cup of water, a teaspoon of salt and a teaspoon of turmeric. Cook for 4 whistles. Remove from heat and wait for the pressure in the cooker to release naturally. Set aside.
For Sambar Masala
  1. Heat oil in a pan and add in the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, pepper, fenugreek seeds, chana dal, urad dal. Fry for a minute. Once the chana dal is brown, add in the curry leaves, dry red chillies, asafoetida, coconut, jaggery and the tamarind. Fry for 30 seconds. Remove from heat.
  2. Grind the mixture with half a cup of water to a paste. Let the paste be very slightly coarse. Set aside.
For the Sambar
  1. Take a heavy bottomed pan and add in the ground masala and one cup of water. Let it come to a boil on medium flame. Once its boiling, add in the cooked vegetables along with the water used for cooking. Add in the salt. Let it boil for 2-3 minutes on medium flame. Add in the cooked dal and let it continue to boil for 2-3 minutes.
For Tempering
  1. Heat oil in a kadai and add in the mustard seeds when the oil is hot. Add in the curry leaves and switch off the flame. Add in 1/2 teaspoon of red chilli powder and immediately pour it on the sambar. The red chilli powder might burn if kept in the oil for too long. So have an eye on the kadai. Add in the coriander leaves and a tablespoon of ghee. Switch off the flame.
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This post was last modified on February 16, 2017 11:23 pm

Suguna Vinodh :I'm Suguna Vinodh aka Kannamma. I love south Indian food and I am passionate about baking. My Favorite things include my Wusthof knife, Coffee, Ilayaraja, Tamil and beaches. I love Jacques Pepin and Julia Child.

View Comments (266)

  • I just love this recipe. I came across it accidentally , tried it and my whole family is a fan now. I have never been to Coimbatore but if i get a chance i will surely visit this restaurant. Cheers!

  • Thank you for just an amazing recipe and the story along with it. I was born in Coimbatore, and I visited annaporna often although I lived in Chennai. I loved the sambar, I didn’t have fresh drumsticks but it still tasted good. I haven’t been to India or Coimbatore in many years ( 10 years ) so cant wait to come down and check this old favourite of mine. Keep up the amazing work!

  • I live in the US and when I come home to Kovai, one of my favorite things to eat with my hubby is Annapoorna Hotel vadai, dosa and sambar, this tastes JUST LIKE HOME, thank you so very much for this recipe!!! I had to add 1 more cup of water because it was too thick, but other than that this recipe is perfect, tastes so good!!

  • Hi Sugana,

    It's been a long time I posted comment. Hope all good at your end.

    I need a help in scaling up the annaporna sambar recipe. Can you please tell me how much dal and other ingredients to be used if I want to make 1 medium aluminum tray which we get in USA? Planning to prepare it for one of the family party.

    Thanks in advance,
    Pavithara

  • I have a suggestion. Prepare sambhar powder without coconut and tamarind and jaggery in your ingredients.and store it. At the time of cooking slightly heat up coconut and add tamarind and jaggery and small amount of sambhar powder and grind as coarse mixture and use it. This will avoid sauteing and grind other ingredients every time.

  • Thanks for sharing this recipe. I tried it and it turned out very well. The best ever sambar we have ever had at home