Easy and delicious rava idlis are a great variation of the classic idli. The batter to make these instant suji idlis does not need fermentation and is great for breakfast or lunch boxes. Keep the suji mixture handy and make idlis in no time.
Why you will love this recipe?
- Rava idli is known for its simplicity and ease of preparation. Unlike traditional idli, it doesn't require fermentation, which can take several hours.
- Rava idli pairs exceptionally well with various side dishes, such as coconut chutney, sambar, tomato chutney, or any other South Indian condiments.
- Rava idlis are generally well-received by children due to their mild flavors and appealing texture. You can also sneak in some vegetables to make them even more kid-friendly.
Semolina: Rave/suji, is the main ingredient for this instant idli recipe.
Yogurt: Plain yogurt with a slight tang works best.
Ghee: I use ghee to make the tempering; however, it can be replaced with regular cooking oil.
See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.
Step 1: Heat ghee in a
Step 2: Add the ginger, green chilies, curry leaves, cilantro, and cashew nuts. Saute for 1-2 minutes until the cashew is golden (image 2).
Step 3: Add the semolina and saute on medium to low heat for 5-6 minutes until it is aromatic. Let it cool completely (images 3 and 4). At this stage, the suji mixture can be stored in the refrigerator for up to six months.
Step 4: Transfer the tempering of mustard seeds and rava to a mixing bowl. Add yogurt and salt to the cooled semolina. Slowly add water (approximately 1½ cups) and mix well to form a smooth, thick batter. Start with one cup of water and add more as needed. Cover and let the batter rest for 30 minutes (images 5 and 6).
Step 5: Once the batter is rested, add baking soda and mix well. Add a little water to adjust the consistency of the batter if needed, and mix well. Rava idli batter is ready (images 7 and 8).
Step 6: Spoon the prepared batter into greased idli molds. Place the idli plates in the idli steamer and steam for 12 minutes. Turn off the heat and let it sit in the steamer for another 5 minutes (images 9 and 10).
Use a medium or coarse variety of rava (and not super fine semolina) to get super soft and fluffy idlis. It is important to roast the semolina well before making the batter to get spongy idlis. If the suji is not roasted, the idlis will become sticky.
Use yogurt that is slightly sour/tangy to make the sooji idli. It works better than fresh yogurt. If you have fresh yogurt, leave it at room temperature for a few hours before using it.
Baking soda helps raise the batter and makes the idlis soft and light. However, do not add a lot of soda, as it may alter the taste of the idli.
The suji mixture can be prepared and stored in the refrigerator for up to six months. However, it is best not to store the batter, especially after adding the soda. If you store the batter after adding soda, the idlis will turn out hard.
You can also use an
You can add some vegetables to the mixture. Grated carrots, finely chopped green beans, bell pepper, hyacinth beans, etc., work well with this.
What to serve with rava idli?
You can also serve rava idli with other South Indian chutneys like tomato chutney or peanut chutney for variety or pair it with a simple side of plain yogurt or pickle for a delightful meal. Serve it along with strong filter coffee for the perfect breakfast. Pair it with sweet sooji halwa for an indulgent touch.
This can happen if the batter is not aerated. Make sure you steam the idlis as soon as you add the soda or eno fruit salt. Additionally, adequate resting time after mixing the batter is crucial to allow the semolina (rava) to absorb moisture and soften.
This will happen if the suji/semolina is not roasted well. Use medium-thickness semolina and roast it well before making the batter to avoid sticky idlis. Also, make sure the batter should have a thick but pourable consistency, similar to regular idli batter. Also, if you live in a humid climate, you may need to adjust the quantity of yogurt or curd to avoid excess moisture in the batter, which can result in stickiness.
To store leftovers, allow them to cool to room temperature, then transfer them to an airtight container or wrap them in aluminum foil. Refrigerate for up to 5 days. When reheating, you can steam them briefly to regain their soft texture or microwave them with a damp paper towel to prevent drying out.
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Rava Idli / Suji Idli
- 1½ cups semolina medium or coarse variety
- 1 cup yogurt
- 2 tablespoon ghee
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 2 teaspoon chana dal (split yellow pea or Bengal gram)
- 1 teaspoon urad dal (split black gram)
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- ½ inch ginger grated
- 2-3 green chili finely chopped (or as per taste)
- 10 cashew chopped
- Salt to taste
- 1 sprig curry leaves finely chopped
- ¼ cup cilantro finely chopped
- ½ teaspoon asafetida hing
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
Make the suji mixture:
- Heat ghee in a frying pan or kadhai. Add mustard seeds and let them splutter.
- Add hing, chana dal, urad dal, and cumin seeds. Saute for a few seconds.
- Add the ginger, green chili, curry leaves, cilantro, and cashew. Saute for 1-2 minutes until the cashew is golden.
- Add the semolina and saute on medium to low heat for 5-6 minutes until it is aromatic.
- Turn off the heat and let the mixture cool completely.
- Add yogurt and salt to the cooled semolina and mix well.
- Slowly add water (approximately 1½ cup) and mix well to form a smooth thick batter.
- Cover and let the batter rest for 30 minutes.
Make the idlis:
- Once the batter is rested, add baking soda and mix well. Add some water if needed and mix well.
- Spoon the mixture into greased idli molds and steam for 14 minutes.
- Turn off the heat and let the idli sit in the steamer for another 5 minutes.
- Remove from mold and serve hot with chutney.