Urad and Yellow Moong dal Idlis

Making idlis has been such a difficult task for me. I prepared the batter every time with a hope of having soft and spongy idlis. Attempted them so many times with all the known tricks and tested tips from my family, friends as well as from different blogs but each time it has been a failure. The type of lentils and rice used, the process of grinding itself, consistency of batter, the factors responsible for fermentation, etc I couldn't pinpoint exactly what was going wrong with my attempts. I had almost stopped steaming the batter for past few months and preferred making dosas from the ground batter though its a time consuming process for me.

Recently, my foodie friend Uma shared her recipe for soft idlis which included urad dal and yellow moong dal and NO RICE  *$#*# ... I was surprised to see the recipe didn't mention about inclusion of rice. [Later found out wikipedia has also mentioned that there is no known record of rice being added while preparing idlis till some time in the 17th century].  A bit scared to try this new recipe due to previous failed attempts, but then hopes u see ...it did remind me of the saying "Try and try till you succeed". And here is the result,,, SOFTY SOFT IDLIS

Thanks Uma for sharing this recipe. I am glad I attempted it and so happy with the results - delicious, nutritious, fluffier idlis. This recipe is a keeper and me gonna prepare them frequently


Yellow moong dal 1 cup
Whole white urad dal 1 cup
Fenugreek seeds few
Salt to taste


Wash, clean and soak moong dal, urad dal [with fenugreek seeds] separately for 4-5 hours. Transfer them to mixer jar and grind them separately. Grind urad dal with required amount of water to soft smooth batter consistency. [Tip: add chilled water while grinding and also take breaks in between while grinding urad dal on mixie for 2-3 minutes till you get smooth batter, so that batter doesn't warm up and affect the fermentation process]. Remove the paste in broad vessel and keep it aside. In the same mixer jar add moong dal and grind it to fine paste. Combine this to urad dal paste, add salt and keep aside to ferment for 10 - 12 hours or till the batter rises. Make sure the vessel has enough space to allow the batter to rise. The final batter should be thick in consistency.

Next day, grease the idli moulds and steam like regular idlis for 10-15 minutes in steamer/ pressure cooker without whistle. Allow it to cool, unmould them and serve with sambhar or chutney or any other choice of accompaniment.

  • You can do little variation by adding grated ginger, finely chopped green chillies, coriander leaves, hing, curry leaves  
  • You may also use split urad dal in which case the proportion would be 1.25 cups of urad to 1 cup of yellow moong dal. 
  • Please note that the batter should not over-ferment as it tends to become sour.
Happy cooking !


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