Podi Idli

Podi IdliHere is yet another variant of one of the most popular south indian dish, Idli. However, the recipe I have posted here is simple yet tasty. It is made from Milagai Podi or Idli Podi or just Podi, a popular condiment usually had with idli and dosa, called Podi Idli. Podi literally means coarse powder in Tamil. In India, it is popular in Tamilnadu and Andhra Pradesh where it is also called as gun powder because of the spiciness 🙂 Idli podi is somewhat similar to mustard back here, I mean not the texture but the selectiveness in their usage. When you have Podi, you don’t have to worry about any other chutney or side dish for Idli and Dosa; having just them tastes awesome.

podi idliPodi IdliI love my grandma’s idli podi recipe the most and then my Mom’s. The Podi I have used in the Podi Idli recipe here is my Mom’s. There are so many varieties of Podi like Milagai Podi, Ellu Podi (made from sesame seeds), Paruppu podi etc and the interesting part is each of these serve as an accompaniment to a particular main dish 🙂 I have used both black and white sesame seeds to prepare the Idli Podi. Make sure to grind it to a coarse texture since the coarse particles brings out the flavor and adds crunchiness much more than the fine grained powder.

Podi IdliPodi IdliI always prefer having Idli Podi with whatever chutney I make 🙂 This has been my preference since childhood and I used to get an earful from my Mom for that (and still do sometimes) :). Podi Idli is a filling dish and is very easy to make. All you need is an awesome Idli podi and soft idlis. My MIB is a big fan of this recipe 🙂 I have not added onions and green chillis to the recipe since it might then taste similar to another variety of Idli called the Idli Upma (I will post the recipe soon). Podi Idli can be had for breakfast, dinner or just as an appetizer. Try this easy dish in your home and let me know when you would prefer to have it? 🙂

Podi Idli
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Indian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 20 mini idlis
To make idli podi
  • Whole urad dal - 1 cup
  • Red chilli - 10 to 12 nos
  • Sesame seed - ½ cup
  • Garlic cloves, big - 2 nos + 1 medium
  • Curry leaves - half a sprig
  • Salt - 1 tsp
To make podi idli
  • Idli batter -
  • Oil - ½ to 1 tsp
  • Mustard seeds - ½ tsp
  • Urad dal - ½ tsp
  • Curry leaves - ½ a sprig
  • Idli podi - 2 tbsp
  1. Heat a pan in a medium flame and dry roast urad dal until aroma spreads for couple of minutes. Transfer to a plate and let it cool.
  2. Next dry roast red chilli and garlic seperately until they turn crisp and transfer to the plate.
  3. In the same pan dry roast sesame seeds until it splutters for about a minute. Transfer to a separate plate and let it cool.
  4. Turn off the heat and dry roast curry leaves until they turn crispy.
  5. Pulse urad dal, curry leaves and red chilli twice. Add sesame seed, garlic and salt and blend for few seconds to a coarse powder.
  6. Now pour idli batter in mini idli plates and steam cook for 15 minutes.
  7. scoop out all the idlis and immediately (when the idlis are still hot) add a tbsp of idli podi and roughly toss them.
  8. Heat oil in a pan and season with mustard, urad dal and curry leaves.
  9. Add the tossed idlis to the seasoning along with a tbsp of idli podi. Covet the lid, hold two sides of the pan and carefully toss them for few seconds.
  10. Turn off the heat and serve tasty and spicy podi idli with sambar and chutney or serve as is. Enjoy! 🙂

Podi Idli


Kadalai paruppu chutney Kadalai Paruppu chutney or chana dal chutney is a popular side dish to idli and dosa in south Indian homes. It is my HB’s favorite chutney.  I normally prefer onion chutney  but do try other varieties as well. During my recent visit to India, my MIL prepared Kadalai Paruppu chutney and after having it, I realized how much I missed it. And now, it has joined to my list of chutneys to go for when there is a time constraint 🙂 Kadalai paruppu chutney Kadalai Paruppu chutney, though is had with idli and dosa, it really goes well with idli. It is easy to make and tasty as well. Kadalai Paruppu chutney with idli, podi and gingely oil is a combination that has to be tried at least once :). As I had mentioned above, even though it is popular in South Indian homes, I have never seen it served in restaurants!? (or I might not have recognized it when served ;)) Kadalai paruppu chutney The main ingredient in Kadalai Paruppu chutney, as the name suggests, is kadalai paruppu. As with all other tasty dishes, there is a slight drawback to this chutney as well, i.e., fat. Kadalai paruppu is one of the grams that is used to extract oil and hence the fat content. However, having tasty chutneys once in a while is a welcome relief to otherwise mundane dishes, what say? Do try this recipe in your home and share your thoughts.

Recipe type: Breakfast
Cuisine: Indian
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 3
  • Oil – ½ tbsp
  • Chana dal or kadalai paruppu – 2 tbsp
  • Shallots – 3 nos
  • Red chilli – 2 nos
  • Tomato – 1 no
  • Grated coconut – 1 tbsp
  • Salt as required
To temper:
  • Oil- ½ tbsp
  • Mustard seeds – ½ tsp
  • Urad dal – ½ tsp
  • Curry leaves – 5 nos
  1. Heat a flat pan with oil and add chana dal (kadalai paruppu). Stir for a minute and add roughly chopped shallots. Sauté well and add red chilli and chopped tomato.
  2. Add salt and sauté for couple of minutes.
  3. Allow them to cool and blend it along with grated coconut.
  4. Transfer the kadalai paruppu chutney to a serving bowl and do the seasoning. Enjoy it with hot idlis along with idli podi on the side!
Do not fry the chana dal for so long. Add onions before the chana dal turn brown. The right state is when the chana dal turns white around the corners.

Kadalai paruppu chutney