The batter consistency for idllis should not be thin as we do for dosas. It should be a little thick. Grease idlli plates with little oil or pam spray. Pour required batter in the idlli pan. Don't pour too much ,as the idllis will fluff and stick to the plate above it, resulting in ugly looking idllis. Arrange the plates on the rod that comes with the idlli maker. Pour some water in the idlli maker and heat until it starts to boil. Put the idllis plates in and close the idlli maker. Cook for 7 to 10 minutes. Steaming hot idllis are ready. Serve with chutney or sambar of your choice.
To get softer and fluffy idllis, you can add a little extra of urad dal to the usual ratio, prior to soaking. One of my friends has told me not to stir the batter too much after fermentation.
The sambar I have made here is so simple and a little different than traditional sambar. We do not use vegetables or tamarind pulp in this. The sambar gets it's special taste from the freshly made sambar powder. So, let's go to the recipe.
Toor dal- 1 cup
onion- 1/2 (medium,sliced)
tomato- 1 1/2 (medium, chopped)
sambar powder- 1 1/2 tbsp
jeera- 2 tsp
methi seeds- 1/4 tsp
corriander seeds- 1 tbsp
red chillies- 4
Dry roast all and make a fine powder.
Heat oil in kadai and pop mustard seeds, methi seeds and little jeera seeds until color changes. Then add onions, green chillies and turmeric powder. When the onion gets golden brown , add tomatoes and cook till soft.Add sambar powder,hing and curry leaves. Then add 2 1/2 cups water or more. Bring to a soft boil. Then add cooked & smashed toor dal and bring to a nice boil. switch off gas. Finally add corriander leaves and 1/4 tsp sambar powder. mix well. Goes really well with dosas and idllis.
Here is a dosa.(My version of hotel style dosa. Hey... I guess it's not too bad for a first timer).Enjoy with sambar!