Kanchipuram Idli is almost like a masala Idli with a distinct flavour of cumin seeds , dry ginger, and black pepper. Another thing that adds to the flavour of Kanchipuram Idli is that it is steamed in dried mandharai leaves which adds a woody flavour. A slight variation from regular soft Idli, the texture of Kanchipuram Idli is also little denser than regular Idli.
As you all know my love of this delicious south Indian breakfast of Idli ( almost same as I love Punjabi staples paratha), I am always on the lookout to try any different idli variety. Kanchipuram Idli is not a very popular variation of Idli in North India, so you don’t find many places where you can taste an authentic Kanchipuram Idli here. I tasted it first at a South Indian friend’s home, I don’t know it’s the authentic Kanchipuram Idli or not but I just loved the aroma , the flavour, and how it looked served on a banana leaf. (Read: Wonderful Varieties of Idli )
When I wanted to try them myself I could not find dried mandharai leaves for steaming the Kanchipuram Idli so I substituted with the disposable wooden bowls to impart some woody flavour. I know, it’s not similar to the one we get using mandharai leaves but I think it works if you can not find those leaves to steam the idli.
You will find these idlies in different shapes, more often than not these are steamed in large sizes when sold commercially. In restaurants , Kanchipuram idli is cut into convenient size pieces and served with the sides of sambhar and chutney. I like to serve it with Idli pods and Onion and tomato chutney. While people usually enjoy it with filter Kappi my favorite thing is to serve the Kanchipuram idli with steaming glass of cutting chai.
If you are idli lover like me you may like to try Soft Rice Idli with tips of making soft rice idli and Coconut chutney that is served with it. Ragi Idli or Fried Idli and Podi Idli , Chana Dal Idli are another variations of Idli recipes. If you like to know about different varieties of Idli and history about origin of idli, you may want to read this article on Idli Varieties and History of Origin of Idli
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- 200 g raw rice
- 200 g Idli rice
- 200 g urad dal
- salt as per taste
- For Seasoning!
- 1 tablespoon Oil
- 1 teaspoon crushed black pepper
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- ¼ teaspoon thginger powder
- Asafoetida one pinch
- 1 tablespoon cashew nuts
- For Tempering!
- 1 tablespoon ghee
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 tablespoon chana dal
- 1 whole red chilli
- 10-12 curry leaves
- Soak rice and urad dal separately for 3-4 hours.
- Grind urad dal until light and fluffy. Grind rice to a slightly coarse paste.
- Mix both the batter together and add salt as per taste. The consistency of the batter should neither be thin nor thick, you can adjust by adding small amount of water.
- Keep the batter in a warm place for 6-7 hours or overnight depending on season to ferment. In summers it takes lesser time to ferment as compared to winters.
- When batter is fermented keep it aside and prepare seasoning for the batter.
- Heat oil in a kadahi and add mustard seeds, cumin when these start to splutter add ginger powder, asafoetida, and coriander leaves.
- switch off the heat and add this seasoning to batter.
- Now brush the wooden bowls with oil and pour the batter in these bowl so these are half filled.
- Steam these bowls in Steamer for 12-15 minutes and then allow the steamer to cool a bit before taking them oit.
- In the meanwhile you can prepare another tempering of ghee, chana dal, curry leaves , mustard seeds and pour small amount on each idli.
- Serve hot.