Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Fada Idli | Dalia Idli | Broken Wheat Idli | Steamed Black Gram and Wheat Cakes

Idlis have always been a weekend staple at my home. Usually I pair idlis with a sambar and coconut chutney. But on occasion we also like them with rasam and milaga podi or gunpowder are it is know around here:) I have been experimenting with making all sorts of idlis and today I wanted to share a favourite recipe - dalia idli or broken wheat idli.

When I experimented with making idlis with dalia the first time, I made them without the urad dal. They tasted more like rava idlis and to some extent also like a version of dhoklas. They were tasty but did not really have the feel of the traditional rice idli. Then I tried adding the urad dal, but used a coarse dalia and they turned out too sticky. The idli batter made with urad dal and a fine dalia will give you a perfect idli. The steamed cakes will be beautifully spongy, more nutritious and filling than the traditional rice idli. Did I say they taste great too!!

1 cup urad dal, whole and skinned
2 cups fada | Dalia (broken wheat), fine variety
1 tsp methi seeds (fenugreek seeds)
Salt to taste

  1. Soak the urad dal overnight. 
  2. Next morning, toast the fada on a medium low heat until it becomes plump, pinkish, and fragrant.
  3. Allow the fada to cool, then soak in just enough water for about two hours.
  4. Drain the urad dal and methi seeds and grind together with a little water from the soaked dal.
  5.  Once ground to a fine paste, remove about of this mix into a large mixing bowl.
  6. Add about a third of the soaked fada to the remaining ground dal and give the mix a spin or two.
  7. Pour out into the mixing bowl.
  8. Drain the remaining soaked fada completely and add to the ground mix.
  9. Using a spoon mix the fada and dal so that they are completely blended. Add water to get a thick pouring consistency.
  10. Cover and set aside for at least half a day to allow the batter to ferment.
  11. When ready to steam, add salt to taste, mix well.
  12. Pour batter into oiled idli moulds and steam for about 12 minutes.
The idlis will come out really soft and spongy. They go very well with sambar and peanut chutney.

Good to Know
  • I used fine dalia for this recipe. If you have the coarser variety, then soak it as per recipe, then grind all of it separately. Then blend with the ground dal.
  • Allow the batter to ferment at least half a day, it will do so beautifully and that is what will make the idlis soft and spongy.
  • I have added methi seeds to the ground mix, you can skip this if you prefer.
Like this recipe. Tried it. Leave me a comment:) 

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