Kanchipuram Idli

This healthy rice cake has its origin from Kanchipuram, Tamil Nadu. These Savory cakes are made by using whole black Urad Dal and rice. Traditionally the Idli batter was poured inside a bamboo casing (neatly wrapped with Mandarai leaves aka Bauhinia Creeper) and steamed inside a brass cooker for about 3 hours. 

Planning & Pre-Preparation: 10 mins
Fermenting Time: 8 hours
Cooking time: 10-15 mins.
Soaking Time: 4 hours


Ingredients 1:

  • Rice – 1 Cup
  • Black whole Urad Dal - 1/2 Cup
  • Fenugreek seeds / Methi / Vendayam - 1.5 Tbsp.
  • Salt – Per taste
  • Sesame Oil/Gingelly Oil - 2 Tbsp.

Ingredients 2 - Masala Powder:

  • Dry Ginger – 2-3 pieces
  • Pepper – 1 Tbsp.
  • Cumin Seeds/ Jeera – 1 Tbsp.
  • Asafoetida/Kayam/Hing – ½ Tbsp.


  • Soak Rice & Black Urad dal for about 4 hours.
  • Soak fenugreek seeds/methi/vendayam for about 1 hour.
  • When soaked completely, add the soaked rice and fenugreek seeds/methi/vendayam to a mixer grinder and grind as a coarse consistency batter. Transfer the batter to a mixing bowl. 
  • Next, grind the soaked Black Urad dal to smooth batter consistency. Transfer the Urad dal to the mixing bowl.
  • Add salt as per your taste and gently mix all the contents together.  
  • Let the batter ferment for about 8 hours.
  • After 8 hours, Check whether the batter is properly fermented. Well fermented batter results in soft idlis.
  • Transfer the Ingredients 2 – Masala Powder to a mixer grinder and grind into a fine powder.
  • Add 3 Tbsp. of Masala Powder to the batter and mix thoroughly. In case, the batter is too tight, add a little water to form idli batter consistency.
  • Add 2 Tbsp. of Sesame Oil/Gingelly Oil to the batter and mix well to form a perfect consistency batter.
  • Grease the moulds and pour half a ladle of batter into each cavity. Tap it slightly.
  • Preheat the idly pot and gently place the idly plates and steam for about 10 mins. Kanchipuram Idli is ready and it goes well with idli milagai podi.

Points to be Noted

  • You can also use Whole Urad dal (white) instead of black whole Urad Dal.
  • Unfermented batter will result in hard idlis.


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