Leeks Sambar | A Simple Sambar with Frozen Toor Dal
A simple sambar recipe (lentil-based stew) made in Instant Pot with leeks and with frozen cooked toor dal. A simple vegan and gluten-free sambar recipe with minimal effort. Thanks to the meal prepping & planning!
Pressure Cooking + Pressure Releasing Time20mins
Course: Entree, Main Course, rice accompaniment
Cuisine: South Indian
Keyword: instant pot sambar, sambar, Sambar Recipe
1cuptoor dalcooked (I am using my frozen toor dal that I kept it outside for 30 minutes)
I used my frozen toor dal for this recipe. You can find all the details about how I cook and freeze my toor dal in the meal prepping post of mine. Just keep the dal outside for 20 to 30 minutes. I did not thaw it. (Refer notes if you are using uncooked dal)
Clean and chop the leeks, as mentioned above.
Mix 2 tsps of tamarind paste in 1 cup of water and set it aside.
How to make sambar in Instant Pot with frozen toor dal-
Set the Instant Pot in saute mode and add the coconut oil.
When the oil hot, add the mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, dried red chili, and the curry leaves. Saute for 20 seconds.
Then add the chopped leeks and saute for 2 minutes.
Now we are going to add the other ingredients one by one. Add the grated coconut, followed by tamarind water, salt, jaggery, and sambar powder.
Gently mix and ensure the sambar powder is mixed thoroughly, and there aren't any lumps.
Now place the frozen and cooked toor dal on top of the sambar mix—no need to break or mix it.
Turn off the Instant Pot and close the lid. Make sure the vent is in the sealing position, and the sealing ring is on.
Pressure cook the lentils at high pressure for 3 minutes. When the cooking is complete, let the pressure release naturally.
Carefully open the lid and now gently break the dal and mix it. If needed, add one more cup of water and simmer it for 5 minutes. I added hot water just before serving. Refer to recipe notes for the consistency details.
Now add the cilantro and serve hot with rice or any tiffin items.
If you are not using frozen dal, then you can use ¼ to ½ cup of toor dal for this measure. Pressure cook the toor dal with ¾ to 1 cup of water, and once it is cooled down, mash it well and set aside. If you want to cook the dal along with sambar, then increase the cooking time to 15 to 18 minutes.
As always, adjust the salt and sambar powder measure according to your preference.
As I mentioned in the video, if I make sambar well ahead, I usually add 1 cup of hot water to thin it down before serving. But you add after the cooking is complete, that is before adding cilantro. Add water as needed and simmer for 5 minutes.
Add water according to your consistency preference. If you feel the sambar is thin in consistency, then add rice flour slurry to thicken it. (Mix a tsp of rice flour in 1 tbsp of water and add to the sambar and bring it to a boil)
If you are using any other veggies, especially sturdy veggies, adjust the cooking time accordingly. For drumstick, potatoes, chayote squash, 5 minutes should be sufficient.
I skipped asafoetida, but you can add a fat pinch of asafoetida.
Coconut oil adds a nice flavor, but you can use any other oil of your choice.
Instead of toor dal, you can use masoor dal also.