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Masala Idli with Spicy Dahi


For Masala Idli

  • 1 cup split unhulled black gram (chilkewali urad dal), washed and soaked for 2 hours
  • 1 cup unhulled split green gram (chilkewali moong dal), washed and soaked for 2 hours
  • ½ tsp fenugreek (methi) seeds
  • ¼ cup grated carrots
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander leaves
  • ½ tsp ginger & green chilli paste
  • Unrefined salt to taste

For Spicy Dahi

  • 2 cups vegan yoghurt
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds (rai)
  • ¼ tsp asafoetida (hing)
  • 8 – 10 curry leaves
  • 3 – 4 whole dry round red chillies
  • ½ a green chilli, halved lengthwise and seeds removed
  • ½ tsp unrefined salt
  • 1 tsp crushed ginger
  • 1 tbsp date paste
  • ½ tsp roasted cumin (jeera) powder


For Masala Idli

Soak urad and moong dals separately for 2 hours (it is better to use half and half (1 : 1) the first time, until you get a feel for it).

Grind the soaked urad and moong dals in a blender, until you obtain a slightly coarse (but almost smooth) paste. Pour into a large bowl and add fenugreek seeds. Allow this mixture to ferment for 8 – 12 hours, depending on the room temperature. In summer, 8 hours is sufficient, but on cooler days, it takes longer. You can tell by the smell, whether it is ready or not. It should have a slightly sour, fermented smell. Add water so that it is of the consistency of dosa batter (somewhat similar to pancake batter). Add carrots, chopped fresh coriander, ginger-green chilli paste and salt.

Steam in an idli steamer and serve hot with cold, spicy yoghurt (dahi).

For Spicy Dahi

Mix vegan yoghurt and water well, preferably with a hand blender, to obtain a liquid consistency. Heat a pan on medium heat and add mustard seeds. When they begin to sputter, add asafoetida, curry leaves, red & green chillies. Within seconds, as soon as the leaves and chillies are slightly cooked, turn the heat down and add to the yoghurt liquid. Add salt, crushed ginger, roasted jeera powder and date paste and mix well.

Refrigerate and serve cold over hot idlis.

Serve with sweet date & tamarind chutney.

Serves 6 – 8


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