No South Indian breakfast is complete without
a couple or more of soft,spongy ,fluffy hot idlis...
In fact, Idlis -served with a combination of
coconut chutney and vegetable sambar makes
it one of the best ,nutritionally balanced, low fat
breakfast in the world...
Making of the idli is one of the easiest thing for
any South Indian but the same simple recipe
poses a great challenge to people from
the Northern parts of the country...
If you follow the steps meticulously, then making Idlis
is a cakewalk to you too...
- IDLI RICE -4 CUPS
- DEHUSKED URAD DHAL-1 CUP
- FENUGREEK SEEDS(optional)-1 TEASPOON
- SALT TO TASTE
PREPARING THE BATTER
- Soak the rice and urad dhal in seperate containers with enough water. Soak the fenugreek seeds along with the urad dhal.
- Let them soak for 4-5 hours .
- Drain and wash them well with lots of water.
- Now add the drained urad dhal and fenugreek to a grinder and grind well adding little water at a time.(Some add a lot of water at one go and switch on the grinder and let in run for a long time-that does not give the desired result)
- As the grinding goes on,you get a smooth, light and fluffy batter.
- Take a little blob of this batter and drop it in a bowl of water. If the batter floats as a ball,then you can be sure that the urad dhal is well ground.
- Now remove this batter from the grinder and transfer it to a large vessel.
- Next ,add the drained and cleaned soaked rice to the grinder and grind well with enough water.
- Let the rice be very slightly grainy in texture when ground.(too smooth batter spoils the lightness and softness)
- Now mix both the ground batters and add salt to taste.
- Ferment well for 6-8 hours(depending on the weather- in hot Indian summer months,you need just 5-6 hours for the batter to ferment and rise while colder days need longer hours ,Sometimes even a day)
- When the batter has risen well, mix slightly.
- Leaving it in the fridge helps you make soft idlis for a few days but storing them outside the fridge lets the batter turn sour...but the sour batter is great for dosas,utthappams,kara appams/paniyarams etc.
- So,once you master the batter making,you can use your creativity and turn out a number of breakfast and dinner recipes...
TO MAKE IDLIS...
- Grease the plates of an Idli mould/idli thattu.
- Pour a ladle of batter in every depression in the mould.
- Set the moulds in the stand and steam them in an idli cooker or pressure cooker (without weight) for 8 - 10 minutes.
- To test if they are well cooked,insert a sharp knife into one idle.If it comes out clean ,then they are done.
Serve hot with coconut chutney,coriander /mint/tomato chutney and sambar.
Another easily available side dish for idlis are Idli Milagaai Podi and Sesame oil...