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Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Chilka Roti

Chilka roti is a simple, rustic crepe from Jharkhand state that I discovered while cooking my Thaalis. These have become a regular on my weekend breakfast menu in the recent months because of the ease in preparation. They are made with rice and chana dal / split chickpeas. It is a simple, straight forward recipe if one is familiar with the south Indian dosa making. The rice and lentil need to be soaked overnight or at least a couple of hours in the morning. It can be then ground with salt and enough water. I usually add a tsp. of cumin seeds to the ground batter though it is not used in the recipe. The crepes can be made immediately using the ground batter as there is no need to ferment this batter.
 
Rice and split chickpeas / chana dal are used in 2:1 ratio but sometimes I use them in equal proportions. The batter can even be ground and refrigerated in advance to save the time in the morning rush hour. Just make sure to use up the batter in about 2 or 3 days after grinding though I remember the batter lasting up to a week in my refrigerator. They can be made for breakfast, brunch or they can even be a fuss-free dinner idea. Serve these easy, healthy and filling crepes with chutney of your choice. Mine were served with roasted gram chutney and tomato chutney.

Ingredients: 
1 cup rice
1/2 split chickpeas / Bengal gram / chana dal
Salt to taste
Water to grind
Oil to make chilka roti
Directions:
1. Add rice and split chickpeas to a bowl and rinse twice with water and drain. Soak them in water for 3 hours or overnight. 
2. Drain the water used to soak before grinding. 
3. Add the soaked ingredients and salt to a blender / grinder and grind finely adding water as required to form a thick, pourable consistency batter. (This batter gets runny very easily and so start adding a small amount of water to grind initially and go on adding as needed). Transfer the batter to a container.
4. Heat a griddle and pour a ladleful batter at the center and spread it thinly with the back of the ladle. Drizzle oil around the edges and cook until the surface appears dry. 
* Flip the roti and cook on the other side as well for few seconds.
* Remove it with a spatula and repeat the roti making process.
* Serve them warm with chutney of your choice.
This post is an entry for Blogging Marathon and check the link to find out what other marathoners are cooking.

Monday, October 18, 2021

Nuts - Dry Fruits Milkshake

Here is a rich, creamy and nutritious milkshake that can be put together under five minutes. It is prepared using a combination of nuts and dry fruits which makes it a yummy drink. This milkshake can be used as a breakfast or brunch beverage or even as a quick fix energy booster anytime of the day. This is apt for kids like my daughter who drinks only milk and never eat any breakfast. 
I keep the recipe simple by grinding nuts and dry fruits with just milk. I used dairy milk but it can be made vegan by substituting 
any non dairy milk like almond, soy or coconut based one. I add about 1/4 cup each of nuts and dry fruits for each cup of milk used. Any combination of nuts and dry fruits of one's choice can go into this drink. I added almonds, cashews, pistachios, raisins and dates here. There is no need to add any extra sugar in the recipe as the sweetness lent by dry fruits is enough.

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This post is an entry for Blogging Marathon and check what other marathoners are cooking, clicking at the link.

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Sunday, October 17, 2021

Fruit Sandwich

 

As the name suggests, this one is a simple, fruit filled sandwich and one that is well liked at our home. The sandwich preparation needs just basic skills and quick to put together. A simple toast made interesting and a tad healthy for the morning rush hour. All you need to prepare these sandwiches are some toasted, whole grain bread slices, a fruit jam of your choice and some sliced fruits of your liking. Our sandwiches were served with coffee and carrot milk. 

There is no need for any recipe for these quick, filling and healthy sandwiches. Basically you toast bread slices and spread jam over them. Place cut, fruit slices over one bread slice and cover it with another. Cut the prepared sandwiches diagonally to serve. 
I went with oat bread this time but any whole grain bread can be substituted. I spread jam on some of the toasted bread slices and marmalade on some, keeping my family's tastes in mind. Basically grape jam, strawberry jam and orange marmalade were used. I used banana, mango, peach, nectarine and apple but any fruit that you have on hand can go into this sandwich
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This post is an entry for Blogging Marathon and check what other marathoners are cooking, clicking at the link.

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Tuesday, October 12, 2021

A - Z Idli Recipes ~ X for Xacuti Masala Aloo Stuffed Idlis

These idlis are inspired by these stuffed idlis, I posted a couple of years ago. A spicy potato filling stuffed inside idlis makes an interesting and tasty variation to the standard idlis. All one needs to make this variety idlis are fermented idli batter, and a curry which is kept on a dry side, making it suitable for stuffing. A watery or gravy curry is not going to work to use as stuffing here. Idli recipe can be found here. I prepared regular potato curry, replacing green chilis with xacuti masala to suit my 'X' post in this idli series. 

So far in this eries,
Ingredients: (Yield - 16 idlis)
Fermented idli batter
Potato curry using xacuti masala
Ghee to grease the idli plates

Directions:
* Heat water in a steamer or a idli cooker or a cooker base.
1. Stir the fermented batter well with a ladle. 
2. Prepare the curry on a dry side and keep it aside.
3. Grease the idli moulds and pour batter into a mould, filling up  only half of it. Take a big lemon sized portion of curry and roughly pat into a disc shape. Place it at the center of the idli mould and pour extra batter over it, enough to fill the mould.
* Repeat the steps with the remaining batter and the curry.
* Place the idli stand in the steamer, cover the lid and cook on low flame until done. (If using pressure cooker, don't put on the whistle). Add extra water to the steamer if water evaporates in the middle of steaming, taking care not to pour over the cooking idlis. 

4. Steam them on low flame until they are done. (One way to figure out if the idlis are done is to touch the idlis with moist fingers. If they don't stick then idlis are done. If they are sticking then they need more steaming. I usually steam for about 20 minutes on low flame while making idlis.)
* Turn off the stove and let them sit for about 5 - 10 minutes before removing them from moulds.
* Enjoy the stuffed idlis with chutney and/or sambhar.
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This post is an entry for Blogging Marathon and check what other marathoners are cooking, clicking at the link.

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Monday, October 11, 2021

A - Z Idli recipes ~ W for Wheat Rava and Green Peas Idli

Semolina idli aka rava idli is a quick alternative to the standard idlis when one doesn't have the time to soak and grind the ingredients and wait for the ground batter to get fermented. The idli mix can be prepared in advance and stored, to cut the time during idli preparation. Replacing semolina in the idli recipe with cracked wheat makes the version healthier and I prepare cracked wheat idlis for the same reason on a regular basis. 
Adding vegetables to the mix makes it more nutritious and this time I have added green peas which lends color to the idlis. Peas, along with the yogurt used to soak the idli mix make these idlis a wholesome and healthy breakfast option. Carrots, pumpkin, spinach, bottle gourd, cucumber are some of the other vegetables that can be incorporated into idli mix to add extra nutrition.
Ingredients:
2 cups fine cracked wheat / wheat rava
1 tbsp. oil
1 tsp. split chickpeas / chana dal 
1 tsp. skinned black gram / urad dal
1 tsp. mustard seeds
1 tsp. cumin seeds
Salt to taste
1 cup yogurt 
Water as needed (I added more than 1 cup.)
3/4 tsp. Eno's fruit salt
Ghee / oil to grease the idli plates
Ingredients for the peas' paste:
1 cup green peas (I used frozen ones.)
1 inch piece of ginger
1 or 2 green chilis or to taste
2 handfuls of cilantro leaves
1/2 cup water
Directions:
1. Heat oil in  a pan and add split chickpeas, skinned black gram, mustard and cumin seeds. When the lentils start to turn reddish brown, add cracked wheat to the pan and toast on medium flame, for a couple of minutes and turn off the stove. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and let it come to room temperature. (This can be done in advance and the mixture can be stored in air tight container for weeks.)
2. Add green peas, ginger, cilantro and chilis to a blender. 
3. Grind them into a fine puree adding about 1/2 cup of water.
4 & 5. Add this green pea paste, yogurt and salt to the bowl and mix well. 
6. Next add about a cup of water or as much as needed and mix well. Cover and keep it aside for about 20 minutes.
* Stir the mixture after the resting period and add some more water if the mixture appears too thick. 
* Grease the idli moulds with oil / ghee. 
* Heat about 2 cups of water in a idli cooker base or a idli cooker or a steamer on medium heat.
7. Add Eno's fruit salt to the batter just before making idlis and sprinkle a tbsp. of water over it and mix well. The mixture turns frothy at this point. 
8. Immediately, ladle the batter into the idli moulds.
* Place the idli stand in the prepared cooker / steamer and close the lid. Don't use the valve for the lid if using a pressure cooker.
* Steam the idlis on low heat setting for about 20 - 25 minutes or until done. (The idlis should not stick when touched with moist fingers or a toothpick / knife inserted in the center should come out clean.) Check the water level in the steamer base and add extra if needed.
* Wait for about 10 minutes and then remove the idlis by running a spoon around the edges.
* Drizzle melted ghee over the idlis and serve them with a chutney / sambhar.
* Refrigerate the left over idlis and use in a day or two. Or they can be cooled down immediately after preparation and frozen to use later. Nuke them covered in a microwave, and enjoy hot, piping idlis when needed. 
This post is an entry for Blogging Marathon under 'A - Z' theme and check the link to find out what other marathoners are cooking.

Sunday, October 10, 2021

A - Z Idli Series ~ V for Vendhaya Idli

It's time for the idli series again. For those uninitiated, here is a detailed post about idlis and tips for the preparation. So far in this series, I have posted -

The standard version idlis are prepared with skinned black gram and idli rice, that usually go in a ratio of 1:2 or 1:3. However there are a few exceptions like my previous post in this series, uddina idli which was made using skinned black gram / urad dal alone. Here is one more which is prepared using idli rice alone, called vendhaya idli from Tamil Nadu. I accidentally came across these idlis on a YouTube video and the recipe intrigued me enough to try them later. These idlis are made with just two ingredients, namely idli rice and fenugreek seeds. Fenugreek seeds are called 'vendhayam' in Tamil and hence the name of the idlis. The traditional version also contains castor seeds and prepared during summer to combat heat.
Idli rice and fenugreek seeds are soaked, ground and the batter is fermented. Fenugreek seeds which are bitter by taste do not lend any bitterness to idlis and are a healthy addition to idlis here. The fenugreek seeds when soaked turn soft and yields fluffiness to the ground batter. Eno's fruit salt or baking soda is added to the fermented batter just before making the idlis. In fact, adding Eno's fruit salt is a crucial step in the preparation. It helps in yielding a soft, fluffy texture to idlis, even without the addition of black gram / urad dal. Omitting Eno's fruit salt would yield rock hard idlis that are fit to trash. I prefer Eno's fruit salt over baking soda, whenever a idli recipe requires it but if using baking soda, make sure that it is still within expiry date. Otherwise baking soda yields a weird smell to idlis, ruining the taste.

Ingredients:
2 cups idli rice
1.5 to 2 tbsp. fenugreek seeds
Salt to taste
1/2 tsp. Eno's fruit salt *
* Baking soda can be added instead of Eno's fruit salt but make sure that it is not beyond expiry date.

Directions:
1. Rinse idli rice, and fenugreek seeds together with water and drain. Repeat the step one more time. Soak them together in water in a bowl for about 4 hours and drain the water used to soak completely.
2. Grind them together adding salt and water as needed to grind them into a smooth and thick batter. (The salt can be added just before making idlis if living in a warm climate. I add it while grinding since I live in a cold climate and the batter takes longer to ferment.)
3. Transfer the batter to a container that is big enough to allow the batter to raise during fermentation. Cover the container and allow it to ferment overnight (if the batter was ground in the evening) or for about 10 - 12 hours in a warm place. If living in a cold climate, leaving the batter in an oven with the lights on (without turning on the oven) helps. Or use yogurt setting in an instant pot.
4. The fermented batter should rise well and be fluffy but not turn sour.  . 
5. Heat about 2 cups of water in a idli cooker base or a idli cooker or a steamer on medium heat. 
6. Grease the idli moulds with ghee / oil. 
7. Gently stir the batter a couple of times with a ladle. Add Eno's fruit salt to the batter and sprinkle a tbsp. of water over it. Immediately stir the batter well until it starts to turn frothy. 
8. Ladle the batter into the idli plates carefully without spilling.
9. Place the idli stand in the prepared cooker / steamer and close the lid. Don't use the valve for the lid if using a pressure cooker.
10. Steam the idlis on medium heat setting for about 15 - 20 minutes or until done. (The idlis should not stick when touched with moist fingers.) Check the water level in the steamer base and add extra if needed.
8. Wait for about 10 minutes and then remove the idlis from idli stand. Remove the idlis by running a spoon around the edges.

How to serve idlis:
Drizzle some melted ghee over the idlis and serve them with a chutney, and sambhar if preferred. Mine were served with Kumbakonam Kadappa and sambhar.

What to do with leftover idlis:
1. Refrigerate the left over idlis and use in a day or two. 
2. Or they can be cooled down immediately after preparation and frozen to use later. Nuke them in a microwave, covered and enjoy hot, piping idlis when needed. 
This post is an entry for Blogging Marathon and check the link to find out what other marathoners are cooking.

Sunday, September 19, 2021

Seemavankaya Pappu / Andhra Style Lentils with Chayote

 
'Pappu' is a lentil aka dal dish from the south Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. The dish is on a thicker side compared to sambhar, a signature lentil dish from south India and also doesn't need sambhar powder. Green mango, greens, cuke, okra, tomato, and some of the gourds are the commonly used vegetables to prepare this style of dal. Chayote also works well in a pappu recipe though it is not used traditionally. The lentils can be pressure cooked adding the vegetable of your choice, green chili and even the tamarind, making it a quick and easy preparation. The seasoning of mustard seeds, curry leaves and asafoetida makes the dal flavorful. The delicious dal is served with rice, drizzling with ghee.
Ingredients needed for pappu:
1 cup pigeon peas / toor dal
1/8 tsp. turmeric powder
1 small chayote - peeled, seeded and chopped into cubes (I had about a cup.)
1 spicy green chili, slit lengthwise
Salt to taste (I added about 1 & 3/4 tsp. salt.)
1/2 tsp. spicy chili powder or as needed

Thick tamarind puree (I used somewhere about 3 - 4 tbsp. See note below.)
Ingredients for seasoning / popu: 
2 tsp oil 
1 tsp. mustard seeds 
1 tsp. cumin seeds (optional)
A pinch of fenugreek seeds (optional)
2 pinches of asafoetida
Few curry leaves

Directions:
* Wash pigeon peas / toor dal with water twice and throw away the cloudy water. Pressure cook the dal adding chayote cubes, green chili, turmeric powder and 
2 cups of water for 3 whistles or until done. (I cooked chayote separately. The dal can be cooked in a thick bottomed pan on stove top in lieu of a pressure cooker. Soak dal for a couple of hours in that case to fasten the cooking process. Cook until the dal softens adding water as needed.)
* When the valve pressure is gone, remove the lid. Slightly mash the cooked dal with the back of a ladle and keep aside.
* Heat oil in a pan and add mustard and cumin seeds. When mustard seeds start to pop, add asafoetida and curry leaves. Then add the mashed dal, salt, chili powder and tamarind. Mix all the ingredients well with the ladle. Add extra water if the dal appears thicker. Check the taste and adjust any seasonings if needed. Bring the dal to a boil and lower the heat setting. Let the dal simmer for 3 to  4 minutes for all the flavors to mingle and turn off the stove.
How to serve:
Serve this with a small mound of rice and a tsp of ghee. Serve along with a pickle, koora (a vegetable preparation), and yogurt for Andhra style lunch.

Notes:
1. Soak about 1/4 cup of tamarind in water for about an hour or microwave for about 3 minutes adding water. Squeeze thick tamarind puree using your fingers or passing through a sieve. Discard the seeds and fibre. Use the puree as needed and refrigerate the rest. The amount of tamarind puree used depends upon how much tartness is preferred in the dal. It must balance the salt and chili powder used in the recipe. If using ready made tamarind paste, the quantity mentioned above varies.
2. Chili powder can be entirely omitted from the recipe and green chillies can be used accordingly. Or only green chilies can be used in the recipe.

This post is an entry for Blogging Marathon under the theme 'Regional Side dishes'. Check the link to find out what other marathoners are cooking.

Saturday, September 18, 2021

Aratikaaya Koora / Andhra Style Plantain Curry

(This was originally published on 3/18/2008.)

'Aratikaya' is plantain and 'koora' is curry in Telugu, a south Indian language. This aratikaya koora or plantain curry is a traditional version, common in the south Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. It is a simple and easy preparation, with a balance of sweet, sour and spicy flavors. The souring agent used here can be lime / lemon juice or tamarind puree and the sweetener added is usually jaggery. The flavors should be subtle and well balanced for the curry to taste delicious. The preparation is meant to be dry and usually served with  hot rice and ghee. 
 
Ingredients needed: 
2 cups peeled and cubed plantain
A pinch of turmeric powder
1.5 tbsp. oil 
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp split chickpeas / chana dal
1 tsp. skinned black gram / urad dal
A sprig of curry leaves
A pinch of ground asafoetida
1/4 cup fresh / frozen shredded coconut
Salt to taste
Chili powder to taste (I added about 3/4 tsp.) 
1 tbsp. jaggery or to taste
Lemon / lime juice to taste (I added about 1.5 tsp juice.)
Directions:
1. Peel the skin of plantains, quarter lengthwise and chop into small cubes. Add plantain and turmeric to a bowl and add enough water to cover them.
2. Pressure cook the plantain cubes for 3 whistles. Alternatively, put the cubes in a pot and add enough water so that the cubes are well immersed in water. Cook till the cubes are done. When done, you must be able to mash the cubes with the back of a spoon. Drain the water saving a tbsp. or two if needed in case.
* Thaw the coconut in microwave if using frozen coconut.
3. Heat oil in a pan / kadai and add mustard seeds, split chickpeas and black gram. When the lentils start to turn slightly reddish, add curry leaves and asafoetida and stir.
4. Next add the cooked and drained plantain cubes, coconut, chili powder, jaggery and salt. (Now is the time to add tamarind pulp if it is being used instead of lemon). Mash the plantain lightly and and mix well to combine. Taste and adjust the quantities of seasonings if needed. Add a few tbsp. of water saved from cooking plantain / water if the curry appears dry.
* Cook for a couple of minutes and turn off the stove.
* Add lemon juice / lime juice at the end and stir well.
* Serve it warm with steamed rice and ghee.

This post is an entry for Blogging Marathon under the theme 'Regional Side dishes'. Check the link to find out what other marathoners are cooking.

Friday, September 17, 2021

Bihari Ghugni / Bihari Aloo Chana

I had prepared this delicious and nutritious ghugni as part of the Bihari thaali I posted a while ago. Ghugni happens to be a popular dish in Bihar and as well as in some of the neighboring states such as Asaam, Bengal and Odisha where it is enjoyed as a snack. The preparation of course varies from region to region. This spicy ghugni when made into a gravy, can be served as a side dish to go with roti, poori or even rice whereas the street version usually happens to be a dry one. Ghugni can also be prepared using white chickpeas, dried yellow peas or split chickpeas.

The onion and tomato mixture can be cooked directly in a pressure cooker and soaked chickpeas and potatoes can then be added and pressure cooked. For a quicker version, I cooked chick peas and potatoes individually and added to the cooked onion - tomato mixture that got cooked in a pan at the end.
Ingredients:
1.5 soaked and cooked black chick peas / kala chana
2 potatoes, peeled and cubed (About a cup)
1 tbsp. mustard oil, preferably for authentic taste
1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
1 bay leaf
2 green chili, sliced lengthwise
2 onions, chopped fine
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped / 1/4 tsp. garlic paste (I omitted it.)
1/2 inch ginger, finely grated / 1/4 tsp. ginger paste
1 big sized tomato, finely chopped
1/4 tsp. turmeric powder
Salt to taste
1/2 tsp. red chili powder
1/2 tsp. cumin powder
1 tsp. coriander powder
1 tsp. chole masala
1/2 tsp. garam masala

Directions:
* Soak chickpeas overnight or at least 8 hours with adequate water to soak. Let the container be big enough to hold the chickpeas which expand while soaking. Drain the water used to soak and pressure cook the chickpeas adding water as needed. 
* Cook the potatoes until tender and keep aside.
* Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds and bay leaf.  Immediately add green chili, onion and grated ginger. Sauté until onions turn golden brown. 
* Next add the tomatoes and cook until they turn mush. Add turmeric, salt, red chili powder, cumin and coriander powder, garam masala and chole masala. Cook for a minute.
* Add cooked chickpeas and cooked potato cubes and simmer for about five minutes. Mash some of the potatoes if the gravy needs to be thicker.
* Serve it with Indian style breads / rice.

This post is an entry for Blogging Marathon under the theme 'Regional Side dishes'. Check the link to find out what other marathoners are cooking.

Sunday, September 12, 2021

A - Z Idli Series ~ U for Uddina Idli

Uddina bele is black gram / urad dal in Kannada. The idlis I am posting today are made with skinned black gram and hence the name. Like many of the idlis I have posted in this series, these delicious idlis also come from the south Indian state of Karnataka. They are popular in Mysore region and are instant kind idlis though grinding is involved. These idlis can be made without any advance planning as no fermentation is required though the ingredients need to be soaked for a couple of hours.

Black gram and idli rava are soaked and ground and are instantly made into idlis without fermenting the batter. The idlis are flavored with the addition of coconut, chilis and dill leaves to the batter. Minced onions can also be added if preferred. The idlis come out soft even without the addition of any leavening agents or fermentation.

These vegan and gluten-free idlis don't need any elaborate side dishes. A simple coconut chutney will be a perfect accompaniment or they are eaten even plain when made spicier. The leftovers can be refrigerated. They freeze well and when needed, just remove them from the freezer and microwave them covered in a glass bowl for few minutes and you will have hot piping idlis to serve.

Ingredients: (Yield about 12 idlis)
1/2 cup skinned black gram / urad dal
1 cup idli rava / cream of rice
2 to 3 tbsp. split chickpeas / chanadal / Bengal gram
Salt to taste
A handful of minced dill leaves (I didn't use it.)
2 tbsp. minced cilantro
1 tbsp. minced curry leaves
3/4 grated fresh coconut 
1 or 2 spicy green chili, finely chopped 
Oil to grease idli plates
(Minced onions can be added if preferred.)
Directions:
1. Wash black gram / urad dal thoroughly with water by rubbing  between fingers and drain. Soak it in water for a couple of hours.
* Rinse and soak idli rava in water in another bowl.
* Soak Bengal gram in water for a couple of hours or until dal can be broken when pressed between thumb and forefinger. Drain the water used to soak the Bengal gram. (One can soak the ingredients the previous night and refrigerate to use it in the morning.)
2. Drain the water used to soak the black gram. 
3. Grind it in a blender adding water as needed to form a thick, smooth batter. 
4. Squeeze out all the water from the idli rava completely and add it to a bowl. 
5. Add the ground black gram batter to the soaked idli rava.
6. Also add the soaked Bengal gram, coconut, salt, minced dill, cilantro, chopped curry leaves and green chili to the batter.
7. Mix the batter well with a ladle. (Add a tbsp. or two of water to the bowl if the mixture appears too thick).
* Heat water in a idli cooker / pressure cooker / steamer base on medium heat.
8. Grease the idli plates and spoon the batter into the molds.
* Place the idli stand in the steamer and close the lid. Don't use the pressure valve if using pressure cooker.
* On low medium flame, steam for about 15 - 20 minutes or until when the surface of the idlis don't stick when touched with moist fingers. 
* Turn off the stove and let it sit for about 10 minutes.
* Run a sharp spoon around the edges of idlis and remove the idlis.
* Serve them warm with ghee if desired and coconut chutney.

This post is an entry for Blogging Marathon under the theme 'A - Z' theme. Check the link to find out what other marathoners are cooking.

Saturday, September 11, 2021

T for Thatte Idli / Bidadi Thatte Idli

For the uninitiated, idli happens to be a traditional and popular breakfast item from south India. Idlis are basically steamed dumplings prepared using a fermented batter that uses rice and black gram. The batter is poured into special molds meant for the purpose called an idli stand, that can hold up to 2 dozen idlis. The commercial versions at eateries and restaurants across the region of course are meant to handle on a larger scale. The traditional, eco- friendly versions in some parts of the state of Karnataka have been leaves of banana, jack fruit, teak, or turmeric trees that are fashioned into pockets to hold the batter. 

Today's version thatte idli comes from the south Indian state of Karnataka, thatte referring to the plates that are used to steam the idlis. This locally popular idli variety has it's origins in Bidadi, an industrial suburb outside of Bangalore enroute Mysore. The route which is also famous for Maddur vade has eateries through out to dish out these thatte idli for the hungry travelers and the locals. The plates yield bigger size idlis than the standard concave shaped ones and almost equal to three of the regular idlis. Eating one idli would almost make you full and so these plate idlis in a way save your time in terms of cooking and cleaning. 
The plates used at eateries are similar to the one shown above though usually larger. It is hard to stack if using these kind of plates at home and I use the plate idli stand shown in the pictures.We add flattened rice to our regular idli recipe to make these thatte idli which come out super soft and easily breakable kind. Some use sago / sabbakki instead. I have seen videos where Bidadi eatery owners mentioning that they use only kusubalakki (parboiled rice) and uddina bele (skinned black gram) in 4:1 ratio, which hasn't worked for me and I stick to our recipe for these idlis. These idlis are vegan, gluten free and guilt free and make a wholesome, filling breakfast / brunch. They are usually served with a dollop of butter, along with chutney and sambhar. The butter can be skipped if vegan.
Ingredients: (Yield - 8 idlis)
2 cups idli rice / Selam akki
1/2 cup / skinned black gram / urad dal / uddina bele
3/4 cup flattened rice / poha / avalakki
Water to grind (I used about 1 & 1/4 cups.)
2 tsp. salt or to taste

Directions:
1. Rinse idli rice, skinned black gram, and flattened rice together and drain. Repeat the step one more time. Soak them together in water in a bowl for about 3 to 4 hours and drain the water used to soak completely.
2. Grind them together adding salt and water as needed to grind them into a smooth and thick batter. (The salt can be added just before making idlis if living in a warm climate. I add it while grinding since I live in a cold climate and the batter takes longer to ferment.)
3. Transfer the batter to a container that is big enough to allow the batter to raise during fermentation. (Compare the pictures 3 and 4 to see the volume of the batter increasing after fermentation). Cover the container and allow it to ferment overnight (if the batter was ground in the evening) or for about 10 - 12 hours in a warm place. If living in a cold climate, leaving the batter in an oven with the lights on (without turning on the oven) helps. Or use yogurt setting in an instant pot.
4. The fermented batter should rise well and be fluffy but not turn sour.
* The fermented batter looks like above in the picture - thicker than when grounded, airy, and slightly sour smelling. 
* Heat about 2 cups of water in a idli cooker base or a idli cooker or a steamer on medium heat. 
* Grease the idli moulds with ghee / oil. 
* Gently stir the batter a couple of times with a ladle. 
5 & 6. Ladle the batter into the idli plates carefully without spilling.
 Place the idli stand in the prepared cooker / steamer and close the lid. Don't use the valve for the lid if using a pressure cooker.
7. Steam the idlis on medium heat setting for about 15 - 20 minutes or until done. (The idlis should not stick when touched with moist fingers.) Check the water level in the steamer base and add extra if needed.
8. Wait for about 10 minutes and then remove the idlis from idli stand. Remove the idlis by running a spoon around the edges.
Serving the idlis:
Drizzle butter over the idlis and serve them with a chutney, and sambhar if preferred. Mine were served with roasted gram chutney and sambhar.

What to do with leftover idlis:
1. Refrigerate the left over idlis and use in a day or two. 
2. Or they can be cooled down immediately after preparation and frozen to use later. Nuke them in a microwave, covered and enjoy hot, piping idlis when needed. 
This post is an entry for Blogging Marathon and check the link to find out what other marathoners are cooking.