A Popular South Indian Breakfast Recipe - Idli with Chutney
What is Idli Recipe?
During your visits to South Indian restaurants, especially at morning times, you might have come across most people eating some white round objects served in a tiffin plate along with some small bowls containing chutney and/or sambar.
These white rounded pieces are known as idlis and they constitute the most popular south Indian breakfast recipe.
The Idli is made up of boiled rice flour ( rough flour) mixed with black gram batter and cooked in steam. So they are very healthy and soft to eat.This recipe is so much popular and consumed daily, very often, because of this healthiness and easy to digest factor.
Further, with the addition of chutney or sambar, its taste becomes superb, lucrative and spicy. The cost of it is very affordable which further contributes to its popularity.
Right now, I shall deal with the preparation of Idli recipe and its side dish with full step-by-step instructions for Idli and then for Chutney.
Idli with Chutney
Ingredients for Preparing Idli
sold in markets as idli rawa (rough flour)
one teaspoonful (flat)
refined iodized powder
150 ml for grinding and 200 ml for mixing
Step-By-Step instructions for Preparing Idli
- Soak the black gram (known as urad dal in Hindi, minappappu in Telugu) in a bowl with water in the previous evening itself. Allow it to soak for at least 4 hours.
- Before going to sleep, wash the black gram and remove the water. Put the grams into your grinder jar. Add water for grinding so that the water levels to the grams in the jar and the black gram completely immerse into the water. Normally for 150 grams of soaked black grams, the water required for grinding it is 150 ml. The water is to be added in parts to avoid spilling out while grinding. Grind it for 30 to 40 seconds and remove the jar after unplugging.
- Now, take a big bowl and measure 300 grams of idli rava into it and add water to it so that it gets wet. It will require 200 ml. of water. Then add the above ground paste of black gram to it and a teaspoonful of salt and mix them all thoroughly with your hand and leave it for the entire night placing a lid on it.
- Next morning, when you are ready to prepare the breakfast, take the idli cooker and remove the frame from it. Fill water in it until it reaches to more than half of the mark indicated at the bottom of the vessel so that water does not touch the idli frame plates while boiling and spoil your recipe.
- Apply some oil or ghee to the idli plates before putting the idli paste into it.
- Then place the idli mix/paste into the places provided in each plate of the idli frame and spread it evenly so that it does not touch each other or spill down into the vessel.
- Now, put the plates one upon another on to the frame so that the holes for the passing of steam are not aligned with holes of upper plate as shown in the image below. Then place the frame of plates into the cooker container and close the lid.
- Light the stove and place the idli cooker on it and let it cook for 12 to 13 minutes. The whistles may be coming continuously but it will take full 12 minutes to get cooked well.
- In the meantime, you can prepare your chutney or do any other work.
- After 12-13 minutes, remove the cooker from flame and allow it to set for one or two minutes.
- Next, remove the plates from the idli cooker and keep each plate separately for one minute so that they can be easily removed from the frame plates with hand or spoon.
- Remove the idlis, each piece separately, from the frame and keep them in a hot box or serve immediately in tiffin plates along with the side dish if people are ready to eat. You can apply some ghee over the idlis for taste and energy.
Cook Time for Idlis
Soaking time (4 hours) and time involved in keeping the idly mix to set for whole night or for at least another four hours at any day time not to be counted as preparation time. So preparation time is 1 minute for grinding and another 3, 4 minutes for mixing and 5 minutes for spreading in idli frame plates= total 10 minutes
maximum 15 minutes
Idli Chutney Facts
This idli chutney is very simple to prepare and the cheapest one like the idli.
It is prepared with fried chickpea or Bengal gram flour by adding green chili, ginger, and salt with a little-diluted curd. People add coconut and other ingredients also for taste and increasing the quantity.
I am elaborating the whole procedure below with step-by-step instructions.
Ingredients Required for "Chutney"
Fried Bengal gram (split)
dry fried grams dehulled (packets available in markets)
cut into small pieces
cut each into 2, 3 pieces
one small spoon (flat)
a bit of ginger
small piece (equal to 1/4 chilly)
raw root (not dried)
a little bit (say 1/8 tea spoon)
for colour and taste
one or two table spoons
for taste (optional)
Rate this recipe with your experience
Chutney Preparation Step-By-Step Instructions
- Cut the coconut into small pieces for grinding.
- Cut chilies into pieces by making 3 to 4 pieces of each chilly.
- Make ginger also into small pieces.
- Take the grinder jar and put all the above pieces into it.
- Add split Bengal gram also into the jar. (If fried gram is not available at your place, you may buy the raw (but split) Bengal gram and dry fry it in your pan until its color changes slightly to a bit reddish and use it. It may consume a little bit extra water to grind. But it is also as tasty as the fried gram.
- Put one teaspoonful of salt into it and a little bit of turmeric for color and flavor.
- Add some water, say 20 to 30 ml and grind for 5 seconds. Then add some more water of same quantity and grind again for 8 to 10 seconds. Again add the balance water out of 100 ml and grind for another 5 seconds. The chutney will be ready now.
- Remove the chutney from the grinder into a bowl and you may add some curd with water to it for a better taste.
- You can top it with some mustard seeds(big) and a little bit of asafoetida both fried in a little bit of oil for better flavor.
- Now, you can serve this chutney along with the idlis in the tiffin plates as shown above.
Cook Time for Chutney
Precautions to be Taken While Preparing Idli
- Be careful to see that Idli mix does not become too liquid. The above-mentioned quantities of water are carefully given after practical experience. But sometimes, water consumption changes according to the quality of the gram seeds and rice flour. So always maintain a plus point by adding a little bit less water while grinding or mixing the idli mix. You can add extra water at the time of preparation also if it is too thick for spreading in the cooking plates.
- Take care while adding water to the idli cooking vessel for steam. Even though the manufacturers mark the borders for keeping water levels on the cooker vessels, it is wise to keep the water level only within 2/3 of the marking line.
- Turn off the stove or flame within 15 minutes of the cooking time for idlis to get them soft and to avoid burning in some rare cases.
- Chutney can be either dry/ solid or liquid according to your tastes. Solid chutney may be uncomfortable while eating as the idlis are also dry and your mouth may get dry. So a little bit soft and liquid is preferable as per my experiences.
- Always serve idlis warm. Cold idlis lose their taste and deter your enjoyment.
- If the idli mix or chutney is in excess of your requirement, you may adjust the quantities or you can put the extra quantity in the fridge to be used by next day.