Thursday, November 25, 2010

Quinoa Idlis

Until this week, I had practically given up trying to make idli batter at home. After many many attempts to get my batter to ferment, I had finally concluded that this was beyond me. I had pinned the blame on my mixie. People that heard me lament about this consoled me saying that I am too calm & mild mannered, that the batter rises well only for hot headed people!

So when I tried out these quinoa idlis, I had assumed that I would fail once again. But imagine my surprise and elation when my batter actually fermented well and the idlis turned out soft and fluffy. That too on a record breaking cold day here in the Seattle area!

The basic recipe for these Quinoa Idlis is from Sumadhura. I halved the quantities of the ingredients, which yielded me about 20 idlis. The other change I made was to soak the Quinoa, Brown Rice and Udad Dal together.

Here are a few tricks I used to coax my batter to ferment (not really sure which one did the trick):
  • I blended the ingredients little by little, starting with 1/2 cup and adding another 1/2 cup at a time.
  • Used just 2 - 3 tbsp of water for each batch to blend.
  • Pre-heated the oven at minimum temperature, then turned it off and kept the batter in it.
  • Gave my batter more than the standard "overnight" time to rise. Where earlier I have thrown away batter if it had not risen when I first checked it in the morning, this time I let it sit some more. I would say it took about 15 hrs.
  • When my batter had not started rising after an overnight's rest, I filled a large bowl with hot water (steaming, not boiling) and placed the vessel with the batter in it. Maybe the fermentation had already started by then, but this seemed to speed it up quite a bit.
I will definitely be trying out more idlis from now on, using all of these tricks. So if anyone out there is having a hard time with idli batters like me, do not be disheartened.

We had these healthy Quinoa - Brown Rice Idlis for Thanksgiving Day brunch with coconut chutney and sambar. Certainly worth being thankful for! As for the taste, please note that they do have a distinct quinoa flavor, ever so slight bitterness, but went down very well with hubby and me.

I would also like to send a couple of archived dishes for this event.

Before I end this post, I have a quick tip for including Quinoa in your everyday meal. For the past several months, whenever I cook plain brown rice in the pressure cooker, I add quinoa to it. For example, with 1/2 cup brown rice, I add about 1/4 cup quinoa, rinse both together under cold running water, add about 2 cups water and pressure cook it for 4 whistles. The quinoa gets well blended with the rice and picky eaters will not notice any difference in the taste.


Biny Anoop said...

ur story is similar to mine until i got urid dal with chilka.that with basmati rice 1:1ratio...fermented well.idlis made of quinoa looking good worth a try.

Kiran said...

Hi Supriya,

Thank you for trying my recipe.I am very happy that it turned out good and you were able to enjoy it.All your thanksgiving dishes look delicious and colorful.Have a nice weekend.

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