Saturday, December 10, 2005



The simplest and healthiest, and most basic food in South India is Idly. Idly is a popular food for break fast. I learned this recipe from my mom. I make idly quite often for dinner.
  • Idly rice 4cups
  • Urad dal 1cup
  • Fenugreek seeds (Methi) 2 tsp
  • Salt 1tsp
Soak idly rice in the water for about 5-6 hrs. Soak urad dal and fenugreek seeds together in the water for about 5-6hrs. Grind the rice first in the stone grinder for about 20-25 mins adding required quantity of water until it becomes a thick batter. Pour the rice batter into a vessel. Now grind the urad dal and fenugreek seeds for about 30-35 mins adding required quantity of water until it becomes a thick batter. Urad dal requires more water to grind than the rice. I add water every 5 minutes when the urad dal is grinding. Now add the urad dal batter into the rice batter and mix well by adding salt. Cover and keep aside for 7- 8 hrs, undisturbed to ferment. This varies from place to place. In California, it takes only about 10 hrs to ferment in summer days. Winter days it usually takes about 16-18hrs to ferment.
To make idly, mix the batter well before making idly. Take the idly mould and apply little oil in the moulds. You can do this with your fingers. The oil helps the idlis to be soft. Pour the batter to the idly moulds and steam for about 10 – 15 mins. To check whether the idly is being cooked, insert a tooth pick into the idly. The tooth pick should come out clean if the idlis are done. Serve hot with sambhar or chutney or idly podi.


Blogger sailu said...

First time visiting your blog,Priya.
Those idlis look absolutely soft and melt in the mouth kind...:)
The fenugreek makes a lot of difference in the recipe,I suppose.

9:55 AM   Edit
Blogger Priya Bhaskaran said...

True sailu. The fenugreek makes the idlis to be more soft. I just linked your blog. Thanks for dropping by.

1:55 PM   Edit
Blogger Kay said...

Hey Priya, We use the same ratio of rice:dal and your idlis look very soft and tender too!

3:39 PM   Edit
Blogger joie de vivre said...

Hi Priya,

I recently got married and my husband is South Indian...i so wish to make idli's for him but it doesnthappen rigyt ever and we end up buying frozen idly's :(

Sometimes my idly's turn brown....most of teh times they are too hard....

My MIL told me teh ratio is 1:2=Urad dal:rice so i soak half cup of urad dal with one cup of rice.

I cant find fenugreek powder in Montreal yet.

Pl give me soem handy tips.

11:27 PM   Edit
Blogger Priya Bhaskaran said...

Shailja, the ratio for idly should be always 4:1 --rice: Urad dal. So try doing with 1 cup of rice and 1/4 cup of urad dal... you don't need fenugreek seeds actually... even powder is fine.. this is added to make the dosa brown color and crispy-- so thats why we add fenugreek to get the extra roast texture with brown color!! If you are grinding in Mixie you may not get idlies it would be hard ... so try grinding in the grinder if you have one....
and use idly rice.... hope this helps you-- try my proportion you will get nice soft idlies:)

11:42 PM   Edit

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