Idli (GF, V)


  • 1/2 cup urad dal
  • 1 cup idli rava (or idli rice)
  • 1/2 t non-iodized salt
  • 3/4 – 1 cup chilled water

Special tools:

  • Idli plates(like these) or stainless steel measuring cups
  • Steamer
  • 2 non-metal mixing bowls
  • Blender or food processer


  1. Rinse and soak the idli rava and urad dal in separate non-metal bowls. Have at least 2 – 3 inches of water above the top of each bowl.
  2. Let soak for at least 6 – 8 hours.
  3. After 6 hours, drain and rinse both idli rava and urad dal.
  4. Add soaked urad dal and 3/4 cup water to a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. If you need to add more water, do so.
  5. Add in soaked idli rava and salt. Blend just until combined.
  6. Set the idli batter aside in a warm place for at least 12 – 14 hours but can go longer. You may want to put a pie dish or something to catch any overflow just in case. The batter will ferment and should get thicker and smooth. If you start the batter in the evening, you can let it ferment overnight and continue on the next step just before dinner the evening after.
  7. Do not cover the batter while fermenting but you can put it in the oven turned off to keep it away from any bugs or dirt.
  8. After the fermentation process is over, prepare to cook the idli.
  9. Boil water in the bottom of the steamer basket.
  10. Lightly grease your idli plates or stainless steel measuring cups. Give the batter a light stir and fill the plates about 3/4 of the way full. The batter will rise so you do not want the cups to overflow.
  11. When the water begins to boil, place the filled idly stand and plates or measuring cups in the steamer. If you are using measuring cups, make sure the cups are sitting flat and not on an angle. Cover and steam for 10 minutes. Turn off the stove and leave the lid on for 2 minutes to gently lower the heat. after 2 minutes, carefully take the idli out of the steamer. It may be very hot to touch so you may want to be careful.
  12. Continue the process until all idli have been cooked.

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