I absolutely love South Indian food! There is some sort of comfort attached to idli, dosa and sambhar! They make me feel at home. While I stayed in Bombay for my MBA, very often I used to visit the famous Ramasharay restaurant in Matunga. They serve the best Rasam Wada in the whole world! It just took a plate of Rasam wada and a cup of filter coffee from Ramashray to make my day!
My love for South Indian food only grew during my stay at Chennai. There are a number of food joints like Mathsya, Sangeetha and Sarvana Bhavan that serve delectable idli and dosas with mouth-watering chutneys and sambhar. I especially love idli.
Although making idli at home isn’t difficult but requires a lot of time and patience! Soaking the rice for hours and then grinding and letting it ferment overnight more than anything requires patience. Though the effort is all worth the fluffy and spongy idlis, there are days when you just wake up and feel like eating idli for breakfast. There are ready to eat and instant idli mixes available in the market, but I try and avoid eating out of the packet.
This recipe comes handy on such days. This idli is made from rava and yogurt and can be made in less than an hour’s time. It’s given a taste by adding various spices. I generally make it for breakfast but I am pretty sure it can be served as an evening snack too along with a spicy chutney.
I serve it with the Andhra podi masala also called as gunpowder that I make at home. I will be sharing its recipe soon. These idlis are healthy and can be had plain as they have a flavor of their own because of the added spices or can be served with green chutney.
- 1 cup= 250 ml
- 1 cup of Suji/ rava/ semolina/ cream of wheat
- ½ cup of fresh dahi/yogurt
- 1 tsp of finely chopped green chillies
- 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh coriander
- 1 tsp finely chopped ginger
- 7 to 8 curry leaves
- 1 tsp black mustard seeds (rai)
- 5 to 7 cashew nuts, roasted and chopped
- 1 tbsp chana dal (Bengal gram)
- A pinch of asafoetida (hing)
- A pinch of baking soda (around ¼ tsp)
- 2 tbsp ghee for roasting the suji
- 1 tbsp oil for frying the cashew nuts
- 2-3 tsp oil for tempering
- Salt as per taste
- Heat 2 tbsp ghee in a pan and roast the rava in it. Keep stirring continously for about 2 min till it gives out a nutty aroma. This will enhance the flavour.
- Put the roasted rava in a mixing bowl. Keep it aside.
- In the same pan, heat a tbsp of oil and fry the chopped cashew nuts in it. Once they turn slightly brown switch off the flame and add them to the rava in the mixing bowl.
- Again heat a tsp of oil for tempering. All mustard seeds to it.
- Once they start to splutter add chana dal, curry leaves, and asafetida. Fry till the chana dal turns golden in colour. Mix this tempering with the suji in the mixing bowl.
- Add salt, chopped green chillies, chopped coriander, chopped ginger and salt to the roasted suji in the mixing bowl. Mix well
- Add the yogurt and mix well. Add water as required to form the batter. Adjust the water as per the consistency. The batter should neither be too thin nor too thick.
- Cover the batter and keep is aside for 25 to 30 min.
- Heat water in the steamer/ idli maker/ electric steamer.
- Grease the idli moulds with oil/ ghee.
- Check the consistency of the batter. Add a little water as the batter generally thickens after some time.
- Just before pouring the batter in the idli moulds, add a pinch of baking soda. Mix well.
- Pour the batter in the moulds and steam for 12 to 15 min or till the toothpick comes out clean.
- Serve hot with podi and/or green chutney. Tastes best when served with a smile 🙂