The ever popular Chettinad Idli is often compared to ‘Madurai Malligai Poo’ for its colour, shape and softness. This is a staple in Chettiar homes. The batter may be kept in the fridge for 3 to 4 days, after fermenting.
Chettinad Idli
Idli served with Vella Vengaya Kose
Parboiled Rice* 4 cups, heaped
Urad dal 1 cup, flat
Salt 3½ to 4 tsp
Makes enough batter for 50 Idli’s

Soak rice and dal separately for three hours. Grind separately with just enough water to run the grinder, until soft. **
Mix both batters and salt adding enough water to get a thick pouring consistency. Allow to ferment overnight or 8 hours.
Heat water in an idli vessel, prepare the mould and make idlis. ***

Serve hot, with any side dish of your choice: Sambhar, Chutney, Therakkal, Vengaya Kose, Kosumalli, Pachadi, etc.

* There are many varieties of parboiled rice. The one best suited to making Idli is the “I.R.20” Idli Rice.
**Generally the urad dal is ground for 35 to 40 minutes until fluffy. Remove and keep aside. The rice is then ground for 30 minutes. Towards the end, add salt. 
Mix in the ground urad dal and run the grinder until well mixed.
Take it into a deep vessel and beat together to get a fluffy batter. Pour batter in 2 or 3 containers. Rest to ferment for 8 hours or overnight. Refrigerate the batter after fermentation until needed.
Alternately, the batter may be stored in Tupperware Canisters in the fridge as soon as it is done. Whenever needed, beat the batter with a whisk once over and then allow it to ferment with the lid loosely placed on it.
The fermented batter is spooned into the mould gently without mixing.
***The Chettinad Idli vessel is a deep one. The mould for making idli fits into the mouth of the base vessel. It has a dome shaped lid.
A thin muslin cloth is cut to fit the mould. The muslin cloth is dampened and spread on the mould.
Water is heated in the base vessel. The prepared mould is placed at the mouth of the base. Cover and wait till it steams.
Then gently spoon in the batter and cover. Steam cook for 5 – 7 minutes.
Lower the flame or switch off the heat source. Sprinkle water and carefully overturn mould onto a larger plate. Repeat as is needed.


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