Oct 11, 2006
Idli with Sambar
Idli is one of my favorite breakfast. Idli served with a zesty Chutney and Sambar makes a perfect breakfast. When I had just started cooking I thought Idli was very tedious job. But once I had made it, I realized its not tough as I thought. Its not so tough to get a agreeable result, but making a perfect soft Idli is really a talent that can only be achieved through experience.
To make Idli you need
1 cup Urad dal
2-2.5 cups Idli rava/rice rava
Soak urad dal for 4 hours. After 4 hrs wash the urad dal 2-3 times and drain water. Grind it into a smooth paste. Do not add more water. You want it to be as thick as you can. It is important that you do not over heat the paste when grinding. Use cold ice water if your grinder/mixer/blender becomes overheated.
Soak Idli rava with just enough water for the rava to soak. You can soak rava upto 2 hrs. You can mix the rava without soaking too. But soaking the rava makes idli softer. I use the water from cleaning the grinder after grinding the urad dal to soak Idli rava, so that any tiny bit of urad paste is not lost.
Mix the soaked Idli rava and urad paste in a big vessel, preferably more than double the size of the total volume of the batter. Add 1 tsp salt and mix well.
Keep the batter in a warm place. During the winter I keep the batter in the oven. I have a gas range, the oven beneath is always warm. If your oven isn't warm just preheat the oven to 100 deg F and switch off before you place the batter.
Let the batter stand for 8 hrs. By this time the batter will be fermented and raised to double. Mix the batter gently. Do not over beat it.
To make Idli's - You can grease the Idli moulds with a tiny drop of oil. Keep water in a big vessel with a fitted lid and a tiny opening for the steam to escape. Pour a spoonfuls of batter into the Idli moulds. Place the lid and steam the idli's for 15- 20 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
Serve with Sambar or Chutney or both.