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Idli is a traditional south Indian breakfast, made by steaming the batter of rice and lentils. Usually, they are made with white urad dal (skins OFF). Here is a recipe for idli made with whole urad dal (Black dal, with skins ON). The color of the idlis made with whole urad dal will be different however the taste will be similar to the white idli. Once you get used to these idlis, it’s hard to go back to eating more processed white idlis.

Servings: 25-30 idlis.


Soak urad dal for 2-3 hours. Soak the idli rice for 2-3 hours.

Wash and rinse both of them. Leave the skin on urad dal. Do not wash them off. Blend dal and idli rice in a high powered blender or idli grinder to make the idli batter.

(If using idli rava, soak it for one hour. Blend the urad dal to smooth consistency and then add the soaked rava)

Let the batter ferment overnight  (for 8-12 hours)

Pour the batter with a ladle into idli plates. Cook them in the idli cooker/pressure cooker for 10 to minutes. Do not put the whistle if cooking in pressure cooker.

Serve idlis with your favorite chutney or sambar.


1 cup whole urad dal (black gram or black lentil with skin)
2 and half cups of idli rice or idli rava