When I think of mini idli, the first thing that comes to mind is the tasty ghee filled mini idli with sambar from Saravana Bhavan/ Ananda bhavan. I don’t think there’s a better way to eat mini idlis other than soaked in sambar. You can make varieties based on the ingredients you have at home like masala idli, fried idli, pepper fried idili etc…

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You need mini idli plates to cook this. How to make batter for soft idlis can be found here. You can use the same batter for making regular idlis and dosas.

Mini Idli and Sambar

Tasty sambar is the key for this. Usually no vegetables are added and the sambar should be little watery than usual.  Idlis can be either soaked in Sambar for 3-4 hrs before serving or can be added instantaneously.  Soaking it for a while tastes better and is my favorite.

To Make Idili:
Ingredients :
Fermented Rice/Ulundu Batter required
Non Stick Oil Spray required
  1. Step 1

    Fill the pressure cooker with 1 cup of water. Pour the batter in the mini idli plates using a spoon to get the quantity right. Keep the stack of idli plates in pressure cooker and place the lid. REMEMBER: Do not put the whistle for cooking idli, it will turn out hard as a rock.

  2. Step 2

    Cook this on medium high for about 10-15 min. Remove it from stove and let it sit for 5-10 mins so that the idlis come out easily without sticking.

Remember again that sambar plays an integral part in this. I love making the sambar in regular Tamilnadu style than the other Hotel Sambar.

To Make Sambar:
Ingredients :
To Pressure Cook:
Toor Dhal/ Yellow Lentil 1 cup
Turmeric Powder a dash
Oil 1 tsp
Salt 1/4 tsp
To fry and powder:
Oil 1/4 tsp
Fenugreek Seed 1/4 tsp
Red Chili 4-5 nos
Coriander Seed 2 tbsp
Dry Coconut 1 tbsp (optional)
To season:
Tamarind 1/2 lemon size
Tomato 3-4 (medium size)
Oil 1-2 tbsp
Mustard 1 tsp
Garlic 2-3 cloves (medium)
Green Chili 1-2 no
Red Chili 1-2 no
Curry Leaves 1 strand
Red Onion 1 no medium
Asafoetida 1/4 tsp
Sambar Powder 2 tbsp
Turmeric 1/4 tsp
Water 1 -2 cups
Salt to taste
Ghee 2-3 tbsp
Coriander Leaves 2-3 tbsp
  1. Step 1

    Soak toor dal for 1-2 hrs, pressure cook the items given in “To Pressure Cook” for 3-4 whistles and then leave it in low flame for 5 min. Mash the cooked dhal nicely when done. Chop the onion, green chili, coriander leaves, garlic. Chop the tomatoes finely or crush it. Fry and grind the items given in the section “To Fry and Grind” to fine powder.

  2. Step 2

    Use the ingredients given in “To Season”. In a pan heat the oil, when hot, add mustard and fenugreek seeds. When they start spluttering add garlic, green chili, red chili, curry leaves and red onion. Saute it until the onion is cooked well. Add asafoetida, turmeric, tomato, sambar powder, ground powder and tamarind juice. Cook this until the tomato is well cooked for about 5 min in medium flame. Add the cooked dhal, required water and needed salt. Let it cook for 5 min in medium low flame.

  3. Step 3

    Add coriander leaves, some dry coconut and ghee before taking out from stove.