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Sunday, July 18, 2021

Cornmeal Idli

Idlis are a classic south Indian breakfast item that are prepared with skinned black gram (urad dal) and parboiled rice or cream of rice. My version today is a twist to the standard version, using cornmeal. Cornmeal is ground, dried yellow corn which ranges from coarse to fine textures. Mine is the coarsely ground version, similar to idli rava aka cream of rice typically used in idli preparation. 

Corn is naturally gluten free but be sure to read the labels since other gluten products may be processed in the same facility. Cornmeal is a good source of carbohydrates, phosphorous and iron. These idlis are obviously vegan and gluten free and make a great breakfast or dinner option. Serve them warm with some side dishes like chutney and sambhar for a filling meal. Ours were served with vegetable saagu and chutney. 
Ingredients: (Yield - about 20)
1 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup skinned black gram / urad dal
3/4 cup water
1.5 tsp. salt or to taste

1. Rinse black gram / urad dal thoroughly twice with water by rubbing between fingers. Drain and soak in water in a container for about 3 hours. Similarly rinse cornmeal with water and soak in water in another bowl. 
2 & 3. Drain the water from both black gram and cornmeal containers. Squeeze out the water from the cornmeal as much as possible.
4. Add black gram, salt and water (as needed) to a blender and grind finely. (It took me less than two minutes to grind in the blender. Skip adding salt while grinding if living in a hot climate. Add salt to the fermented batter before making idlis.)
5. When the black gram is ground, add cornmeal to the blender.
6. Run the blender for a couple of minutes just to blend the mixture.
7. Transfer the batter to a container and cover it. Leave it in a warm place to ferment overnight. The final batter should be of thick, pouring consistency.
* If living in a cold place, leave the batter container in the oven with the light on. Don't turn on the oven. The batter may take 8 - 10 hours to ferment in a warm place. It may take longer to ferment in cold climate. 
* Heat water in a idli cooker / pressure cooker / steamer base on medium heat.
8. Stir the fermented batter with a ladle.
* Grease the idli plates and fill the moulds with the batter. 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 20 - 25 minutes or until when the surface of the idlis don't stick when touched with moist fingers. Turn off the stove and let sit for about 10 minutes.

* Run a sharp spoon around the edges of idlis and remove the idlis.
* Serve them warm for breakfast drizzling some melted ghee over idlis, along with coconut chutney and/or sambhar. Ours were served with vegetable saagu and chutney. 
This post is an entry for Blogging Marathon. Check the link to find out what other marathoners are cooking.


Sowmya :) said...

Wow! I never thought of making idli with cornmeal. It looks so soft and tempting!

Radha said...

This is great! I usually make this instant idli kind. Adding Urad increases protein and I am bookmarking this recipe.

Harini R said...

I used to make the instant idli with cornmeal but have not tried replacing Idli rava with corn rava. Interesting substitution. Shall try it sometime.

vaishali sabnani said...

Suma I must say you have a treasure of these idlis, this with corn meal sounds so unique and interesting.