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Multi ‐ Grain Sourdough Breadlies

Photo by Vinita Punjabi

Recipe by Nina Gijswijt


  • 210 g (2 teacups) multi-grain flour (for instance 50% whole-wheat flour and 50% mix of ragi, jowar, amaranth flour, etc.)
  • 40 g sourdough starter
  • Lukewarm water
  • ½ tsp date paste or 2 tbsp cooked rice, blended to a smooth paste
  • ⅛ tsp cumin (jeera) seeds or powder
  • ½ tsp unrefined salt
  • 1 tbsp crushed flaxseeds, soaked sunflower seeds or any seeds of choice (optional)


If you have a sourdough starter, take it out of the refrigerator 24 hours before baking and allow it to sit outside for 1 hour. Add 70 g flour and 70 ml warm water (not warmer than 40 °C) to the sourdough starter and leave it for 12 hours.

Take 40 g (from the starter prepared) for your next starter, transfer to a glass jar and place it in the refrigerator. To the remaining 140 g of sourdough add 140 g of flour, date or rice paste and as much warm water as required to make a smooth dough, of similar texture to idli batter. Also add salt, cumin and optionally some soaked nuts and seeds. Fill your idli mould with the dough, cover them and let it sit for 6 – 12 hours (shorter in summer, longer in winter). Steam for 30 minutes without opening the lid of the steaming vessel while steaming.


If you do not have a sourdough starter, use 4 tbsp of cooked rice instead of 2, mix all ingredients and leave to ferment for 12-16 hours in the idli mould. The breadlies will not get the distinct sourdough flavour in this case and they will be less fluffy.

Serves 4


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