Friday, June 27, 2014

Idly with Sambar

Ulli Sambar 3


Ingredients (Makes 20 – 25 idlys):

Parboiled rice / Idly rice   --    3 cup
Cooked rice                              --   ½ cup
Whole Urad dal                      --   1 cup
Fenugreek seeds                   --   1 tbsp
Salt                                              --   to taste


Wash and soak the rice for 6 - 8 hours in a closed container.

In another vessel wash and soak the urad dal and the fenugreek seeds for 6 - 8 hours in a closed container.

Drain the water from the urad dal into another vessel and grind it. Use the soaked water and water little by little to make sure you do not use excess. Grind this into a thick and VERY fine paste. Transfer this to a big container.

If using your mixer, you might have to do this in batches or pause at intervals.

Drain the water from the rice and grind it. Use the remaining water from the urad dal and once that is over, use the water in which the rice was soaked. If more water is required, use some chilled water.

Ulli Sambar

Once the rice is half done, add the cooked rice.Grind this into a fine mixture.

Add the batter to the urad dal batter and mix well. I am not sure how to explain the consistency of the batter. It should be thick for the idly to hold its shape and at the same time thin to freely flow into the idly plates.

Keep it in a warm place for 6 - 8 hours to let it ferment.

Back in India, we just had to keep it at room temperature, and my mom leaves it overnight. The batter would be fermented and ready for next day. But here, especially during winter, its hard to get the batter fermented. I preheat my oven to 200 degree Fahrenheit and switch it off. And after 10 - 15 mins, I keep the batter inside the oven and leave it overnight. This helps in fermentation.

Before it is ready to use, add salt to the batter and mix well.

Boil water in the idly pot and grease the idly plates.

Scoop the idly batter into the moulds and steam cook it for 15 - 20 minutes. Remove the plates from the pot as soon as the idlys are done. You can test it using the back of a spoon or a knife. Let it slightly cool before you unmold. Scoop out the idly using a spoon - Now you have the soft -and light idly ready for breakfast J

Ulli Sambar 2

Serve with hot sambar / chutney / chutney powder.

Ulli Sambar:

Ulli Sambar 4

Ingredients (Serves 6 - 8):

Toor dal                    --   ½ cup
Tamarind                 --    a small lime - sized ball / 1 tsp of tamarind paste.
Turmeric powder --   ¼ tsp
Shallots                    --   20 - 25 whole
Green chilies         --   2
Tomato                    --   1 medium sized, well ripen
Coriander leaves --  3 - 4 sprigs, chopped into big pieces
Salt                            --  To taste

To roast and grind:

Sambar Powder  --  1 ½ tbsp, I prefer Brahmins brand. You can also roast and grind from scratch as given here.
Garlic                      --  3 - 4 medium cloves
Curry leaves        --   1 sprig
Grated coconut  --   ½ cup

For seasoning:

Coconut oil          --   1 tbsp
Mustard seeds    --    ½ tsp
Dry red chilies    --   3


In a heavy bottomed pan, fry the coconut, curry leaves and the garlic on a low flame until the coconut becomes dark brown in colour.Switch off the flame and add the sambar powder to it and mix well. Keep aside and let it cool. Grind this into a smooth paste.

You can omit the fried coconut if you don’t want a rich gravy. For this version add more dal for a thicker gravy, if required.
Soak the tamarind in 1 cup warm water and extract its juice.

Wash the toor dal in water twice or thrice. Add the dal, peeled shallots, slit green chillies and turmeric powder to the pressure cooker and cook(2 - 3 whistles) adding enough water.

Ulli Sambar 1

When the pressure is completely released, open the cooker and mix them well. Try not to mash the onions. Add the ground mixture to the tamarind extract and add this to the cooked dal. Add more water if required.Bring it to a boil.

When it starts boiling add the cubed tomatoes.(If the tomatoes are not well ripen, add them during pressure cooking.)

Let it boil for 2 - 3 minutes.Add the chopped coriander leaves.

Heat coconut oil in a small pan.  Splutter mustard seeds and fry dry red chilies. Pour over the prepared sambar.

Ulli Sambar 5

Serve hot with idly / dosa.

Recipe Courtesy : Amma

1 comment:

  1. what a coincidence, i just came after grinding the batter for idli and preparing the onion tomato chutney. wonderful clicks and very informative.