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Sunday, March 1, 2009


how to make soft idli


  • Idli rice - 4 cups
  • Whole white urad dhal - 1 cup
  • Methi seeds - 1 teaspoon(optional)
  • Salt - 3 level teaspoons


  • Wash well and soak rice for 3-4 hours.
  • Wash well and soak urad dal along with methi separately.
  • Drain and reserve the soaked water from dhal. Put dhal in grinder, add half a cup of water and grind until fluffy. Grind by adding the soaked water little by little. Do not add all the water at once. Grind until you can see air bubbles when you take the batter in hand, that is the consistency for urad dhal batter for idli. Transfer the batter to a vessel, keep aside. Now grind the soaked and drained rice separately. Add enough water and grind to a smooth batter. Transfer this to the dhal batter vessel. Add salt and mix both the batter using hands (this helps in fermentation). Allow it to ferment for 7-8 hours. The consistency of the batter should be like this after fermentation.


  • Make idlis using idli plates. Grease the idli plates , pour in a ladle of the batter and steam for 8 minutes. 
  • Unmould and transfer the idlis to a bowl, serve hot with sambar or milagai podi or any chutney of your choice.

(For spongy idlis) :
1. Wash the dhal well and soak it in 3 cups of water.
2. Grind with the soaked water itself until fluffy.
3. Methi seeds can also be separately soaked. If soaked separately, grind methi seeds in half a cup of water for 5 minutes and then add soaked urad dhal to it.
4. Use less water while grinding. Adjust the consistency while mixing.
5. The batter should not be watery.


  1. hello,
    can u please tell me ..is idli rice same as parboiled rice?? ....also can i use the regular rice ? everytime my idlis become rock hard!! and doesnt ferment!! please help me.

  2. Hi Arathi, Idli rice is different from parboiled rice. It is also a parboiled rice but a different variety.

  3. Dear madam
    do we need to add baking soda for batter before cooking of idlies

  4. Hello Madam ,

    Could you please tell me the soaking time for whole black urad dhal ?

  5. Greetings to you
    Your rasam powder recipe is excellent madam

  6. Akka, somehow my urad dal is not grinding to fine paste. It stucks in the grinding jar. untill I put enuf water it does not move. Again soaked everything. will make untill I get the proper repsult

  7. some how my dal is not grinding to a fine paste. It stucks in the jar and does not move untill I pour enough water. I feel that is also a reason.

  8. Very useful post.. thanks a lot..


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