Idli Ingredients
1. 3 cup rice
2. 1 cup urad dal
3. 1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds (methi)
4. Salt to taste
5. 1/2 cup Mamra(puffed rice) or 1/2 cooked rice.

How I Prepare
1. Soak rice along with fenugreek seeds for 4-5 hours, and urad dal for 1 hour in cold water. The dal should be thoroughly washed.
2. Grind urad dal into smooth paste, by adding little water each time. Make sure paste is not watery. Empty the urad dal paste in a big vessel.
3. Grind rice with puffed rice/cooked rice into a smooth paste. We don't want it to be too coarse.
3a. If you are using puffed rice, soak it in water for 1-2 minutes and add it to rice while grinding it.
  3b. If you are using cooked rice, then add it to the rice while grinding.
4. Empty the grinded rice in the same bowl as urad dal. Add little salt and mix it with hand nicely.
5. Leave the mix for 8-10 hours to ferment
6. Once fermented, Pour the batter into greased idli moulds and steam for 10-12 mins for super soft and spongy idlis.

1. In US the weather is not same all year around, therefore in the night before sleeping. I preheat my oven to 250F and switch it off and keep the bowl in the oven for whole night with oven light on.

2. If the batter is nicely fermented then you will notice small little bubble in batter. For some reason if it is not fermented enough,  you add little bit of eno before placing the batter in idli mould.

Sambar (My mom method and my all time favorite with Idli) Ingredients
1. 1/2 cup toor dal
2. 1 large onion, 1/2 cut into big chunks for grinding and 1/2  cut into long slices
3. 1 large tomato, 1/2 cut into big chunks for grinding and 1/2 chopped into pieces
4. 1-2 cloves of garlic cut into long slices
5. 1/2 inch ginger cut into big chunks
6.  1 cup of vegetable (Carrot and beans, and add few drumsticks if available)
7.   2 teaspoon of sambar powder
8. 1/2 teaspoon of red chilli powder.
9. 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
10. 1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds (jeera)
11. 1 teaspoon tamarind pulp
12. 1 teaspoon of grated coconut
13.  Few curry leaves
14. 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
15. 1 red whole chilli
16. Salt to taste
17. Oil 
18. 1/4 teaspoon of asafoetida (hing)
19. 4-5 cups of water
20. Few strings of coriander

How I Prepare
1. Pressure cook dal with turmeric powder and 2 cups of water.
2. Cook all the vegetables until they are tender. I generally add all of them together and pressure cook for 1 whistle.
3. In pan add little oil, once hot add jeera, garlic cloves, ginger, onions (big chunks) and saute it nicely until the onions are translucent.  Add tomato (big chunks), grated coconut, 1 string of coriander leaf and saute for 1-2 minutes. Let the mixture cool and then grind it into a smooth paste by adding sambar powder, red chilli powder and tamarind pulp.
4. In a pan add oil for tadka, add hing, mustard seeds, curry leaves and whole red chilli and saute. Allow the mustard to splutter. 
5. Add remaining sliced onion and saute it until translucent  Added chopped tomatoes saute it until the tomato are cooked. Add the grinded mix and bring it to boil.
6. Add the above mix to the dal along with cooked vegetable mix and adjust the consistency by adding water. Add salt to taste and boil it nicely. Garnish with coriander.

Chutney Ingredients
1. 2 handful of dalia (Kadale pappu)
2. 1 cup grated coconut
3. 1 garlic clove
4. 1/2 teaspoon tamarind pulp
5. 1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
6. 5-6 green chilli
7. Few strings of coriander (i take only 4-5 leaves, i don't like the chutney to have more coriander flavour)
8. 1/2 inch of ginger.
9. Little water
10. Salt to taste
11. 1-2 mint leaves (optional)

For tadka
1. 1-2 teaspoon of oil
2. 1/2 teaspoon urad dal
3. 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
4. Few curry leaves
5. 1 whole red chilli
6. 1/4 teaspoon of asafoetida (hing)

How I Prepare
1. In mixer add everything except coconut and water. Grind it for 1-2 minute, then add grated coconut and little water and grind it until you get an even paste.
2. Heat up the oil for tadka, once hot add the hing, mustard seeds, urad dal, curry leaves, cut whole chilli in half and saute until urad dal is golden brown. Switch off the stove and add the tadka to chutney and mix.


  1. All over India, every person has some special craze for South Indian food. Southern part of India is famous for its mixture of spices and spicy food as well. The balanced amount of spices are used both for the vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes.

    1. Yes very true, each region in Indian is famous for one or the other dish. South region is universally famous for idli's and dosa :)