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South Indian Idli

Idli is a savory cake of south Indian origin popular throughout India. The cakes are usually two to three inches in diameter and are made by steaming a batter consisting of fermented black lentils (de-husked) and rice.

The fermentation process breaks down the starches so that they are more readily metabolized by the body. Idli is eaten at breakfast or as a snack, idlis are usually served with sambar and coconut chutney.

Idli is made four parts of raw rice and one part split black lentil. It serves on banana leave in south India.

Idli are made in pressure cooker/steamer or in Idli maker. It is a classic and traditional breakfast in many South Indian households.


1 cup black lentil

3 cups Rice

1 teaspoon fenugreek seed

Salt as taste

2 tbsps vegetable oil


Wash the rice and lentils separately and soak overnight. Soak the fenugreek seed with lentil.  Grind separately, into thick pastes (adding a little water at a time) in a blender.

Grind the fenugreek seed with lentil. Remove the batter in separate bowl and whisk the lentil batter fast. Mix rice batter in the lentil batter. Stir well to avoid lumps.

Mix salt. Cover and leave it to ferment overnight or 6-9 hours in a warm place.  Once the batter is fermented, mix well. Idlis batter is ready to be cook.

Grease the Idli moulds and fill spoonfuls of the batter into the moulds and steam for 12-15 minutes.

Steam cook idlis on medium flame for about 10 minutes or until done. They are done when a little stick/spoon pricked in the middle comes out clean.

Run a spoon under each impression to separate steamed idlies from the plate. Remove them all like this and get ready to steam the next batch of idlis.

Serve idlis piping hot with sambar and coconut chutney. It is a healthy and no oil required for making it.

Tips: The batter will be medium tight consistency. Cover and leave it to ferment overnight or 6-9 hours in a warm place.

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