February 15, 2013

Rava Idli | Rave Idli - Karnataka Special

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Rava Idli is a speciality of Karnataka,a signature dish invented by the popular restaurant / food chain group MTR (Mavalli Tiffin Rooms ). Rava idli was born sometime during the World War 2 era when there was a shortage of rice.   The popular chain then experimented making idlis using rava/ semolina and thus was invented the yummy and delicious Rava Idli. 

The main ingredient for rava idli is Semolina ,locally known as Rava , Bombay Rava or Sooji .
The rava is roasted to perfection along with seasoning of mustard, green chillies ,curry leaves and mixed with yogurt/curd to prepare a thick batter . Since there is no fermentation involved as in case of traditional idlis ,a raising agent like cooking soda or fruit salt is added to the batter just before steaming. 

To make rava idlis,the  batter is steamed using idli plates and served hot with coconut chutney, sambar or another karnataka special curry Sagu 
A dash of ghee/clarified butter drizzled over the idlis is all the more delicious. 

Preparation Time : 20 mins
Cooking Time : 30 mins
Serves : 2-3
Jain Version : Skip the ginger and follow the recipe as it is

200 gms / 1 measure  of rava / semolina
1/2 inch Finely chopped/grated  ginger
10-15 curry leaves finely chopped
4-5 green chillies finely chopped
Cilantro / Corriander finely chopped
1.5 measure fresh curd /yogurt
15- 20 Cashew nuts
1 tsp eno fruit salt.

Optional Ingredients
50 gms Green peas  (fresh / frozen ) 
1 carrot finely grated

1 tsp Mustard seeds
1 tsp Udad dal / black lentil (dehusked)
1 tsp channa dal / bengal gram
pinch of asafoetida
salt as per taste
4 tbsp cooking oil
1 tbsp ghee / clarified butter

Video recipe link 


  • Heat oil in a heavy bottom pan. Add the mustard seeds,once they crackle , add udad dal,channa dal,curry leaves,ginger,green chillies,asafoetida.
  • As the lentils start turning a little brown,add the semolina and roast it until the raw flavor of rava is lost.
  • The roasted rava will give out a very nice aroma ,take care to see that the rava doesnt turn brown.
  • In another pan,heat the ghee and fry the cashew nuts until golden brown.
  • Add it to the rava mixture and mix well . Also add salt and allow to cool for about few minutes.
  • In the meanwhile,grease the idli moulds and set the idly cooker ready for steaming.
  • Beat the yogurt/curd to remove the lumps by adding some water and add this to the rava mixture.
  • If you find the batter too thick you can add a little water to get the desired consistency.
  • Now add the green peas, grated carrot,cilantro to this batter and mix well.Make sure to squeeze the carrot before you add it,else the batter will turn too watery and might get an orange color from the carrot.
  • In case you feel the salt is less,add it accordingly.
  • Just before putting the batter onto the moulds,add the eno fruit salt. The moment you add this,you can see the batter bubbling because of the presence of Sodium bi carbonate in the fruit salt.
  • Now pour the batter into the moulds and steam for about 8-10 mins.
  • Demould and serve hot with ghee and coconut chutney.

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  1. This rava idly is my go to easiest breakkie when the maav quota is low or even for dinner in winter days. I love its texture and perfect with chutney or sambhar.

  2. Priya had no idea that rava idlis were invented by MTR. Love them so much. And like how easy they are to make. Will have to try them out next time with the sagu curry.

  3. I was not aware that rava idli were invented by the MTR group. Wow they certainly make breakfast in a hurry easy. Sagu is something I must try on my next trip to bengaluru.

  4. Rava Idlis and Sagu reminds me on Bangalore days. Whenever I miss blr I make this at home, with a premix made at home ready, it becomes a breeze


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