Breakfast/Tiffin items / Gravy side-dishes / Sambhar & Rasams

Is it Rasam? Is it Sambhar? Oh! It is Rambhar!!

Oh! How I hate to eat stuff leftover from the previous day’s menu (unless of course if it is poha or chocolate cup-cake)! And what I hate even more is to throw absolutely edible stuff into the bin. But oftentimes, there are things you can’t really cook to perfect quantities.

While I can (and do) cook rice, veggies and dalia to near-perfect quantities on a daily basis with no leftovers being the norm rather than the exception, with liquid gravies I find I’m more often off-mark with regard to quantities than closer to requirement. As a rule, I do not like to use stuff from the previous day in its existing avatar. I like to change such a leftover item into an altogether different dish.

One such is what hubby unimaginatively, but interestingly enough, calls Rambhar. As the name suggests, it is neither rasam, nor sambhar, but somewhere in between! The origins of the ubiquitous Rambhar at our humble home date back to our Bangalore days (although this sounds like it was ages ago, it was only around 3-4 years ago). When just about a half cup of rasam and a quarter cup of sambhar was left after lunch, he’d typically mix up the two, a ready gravy for the night’s dinner.

And from this evolved the Rambhar. If rasam is not used up at night during dinner, I add some cooked dal and sautéed vegetables to it the next day and use it as side dish for to go with idli or dosa during breakfast. It is a quick-to-prepare and tasty gravy item. Do let me now if you do something similar at your place too!



Leftover rasam – 1 cup

Cooked dal – ½ cup

Sambhar powder – 1 tsp

Asafoetida – a big pinch

Chopped vegetables* – ½ cup

Onion (small) – 1 (optional)

Tamarind paste – 1 tsp or 1 tomato (chopped)

Mustard seeds – ½ tsp

Oil – 1 tsp

Chopped coriander – 1 tsp or a few Curry leaves


* I’ve used tomatoes, carrots, radish and white pumpkin. You can use any vegetable you wish to


Heat oil in a pan

Splutter mustard seeds, asafoetida and add curry leaves (if using)

Add onions and sauté till transparent

Add sambhar powder, other vegetables and tamarind paste plus ½ cup of water and cook till vegetables turn soft

Add cooked dal, salt and more water to adjust consistency

Cook for a couple of mins and take off heat

Garnish with chopped coriander and serve


Sending this to the Cooking With Leftovers being hosted by Veena and organised by Sizzling Tastebuds

Also being sent to Lets Cook with Leftovers hosted by


2 thoughts on “Is it Rasam? Is it Sambhar? Oh! It is Rambhar!!

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