Rava Idli is a soft pillowy instant suji (semolina) idli. It is a quick version of regular rice idli. I am sharing with you an easy microwave rava idli recipe. Be sure to watch the video!
About Rava Idli
There are many theories about the curation of rava idli, but all of them are intertwined in Karnataka only. So it could be said that the South Indian rava idli has its roots in the state of Karnataka.
Instant Suji Ki Idli is one of those few dishes I learned to cook as a novice housewife.
Even to date, I am equally fond of these cottony soft steamed dumplings dipped in piping hot mix vegetable sambar accompanied by a perfectly brewed cup of filter coffee.
The uncomplicated process to prepare this suji idli is always one of those pleasurable experiences in the kitchen when, deep down in your heart as a cook, you are affirmative about the flawlessness of the result.
Are rava and sooji same?
Sooji and rava are the different names of the flour produced from wheat. The English translation of both terms is semolina only.
In many parts of India, especially Southern states, the sooji is also known as rava. So don’t get confused if the packet of sooji is labeled as rava or vice-versa.
For making instant idli, you need fine rava or chiroti rava.
My Tried & True Tips
Use ghee for preparing the tempering. It gives an excellent taste to the idli.
Allow roasted idli mixture to cool down entirely before combining it with curd or water.
Ensure curd/water used to make idli batter is at room temperature and not chilled. A little bit of sour curd is perfect for making soft instant idlis.
The instant idli batter should be of dropping consistency and not thick or dry. To get the right consistency, either use water or curd.
Resting idli batter for a short period before mixing fruit salt/cooking soda helps semolina absorb moisture and produce moist, mouth-melting idlis.
Try to use neutral-flavored cooking soda or fruit salt to avoid ending up with fruity-tasting idlis.
After adding fruit salt or baking soda, please do not mix it for too long. As soon as the batter starts frothing, pour a spoonful of it in idli cavities (stand). Hence, it is essential to keep the steamer ready beforehand.
Steam the idli in the microwave for 5 minutes. And then allow them to sit in there for another one minute before opening the lid. Next, insert a toothpick and check for doneness. If not cooked, microwave for 1 – 2 minutes more.
Step-By-Step Cooking Method
Heat ghee in a pan. Add all the tempering ingredients and fry for 3 – 5 minutes.
Next, add semolina to the pan and fry for another 3 – 5 minutes. Turn off the heat. Allow the idli mixture to cool completely before mixing curd.
Make a thick dropping consistency idli batter using curd and water. Add fruit salt/cooking soda and mix nicely.
Transfer the batter to the greased idli molds. Microwave for 5 minutes at high power.
How To Cook Idli in a Steamer
Heat water in a gas stove steamer or electric pressure cooker. Once the steam starts forming, add fruit salt in the idli batter and mix nicely.
Fill each idli mold with the prepared paste. Then, gently place the idli stand or mold in the steamer or pressure cooker.
Steam instant suji idli for 10 to 15 minutes. Later, insert a toothpick and check for doneness. Else steam for a few more minutes.
You can serve rava idli with various South Indian curries and condiments.
Here are a few of our favorite serving suggestions:
How To Use Leftover Rava Idli?
The best way to use leftover rava idli is to make Chilli Idli or Idli Manchurian. Then, you can serve it as a teatime snack or breakfast like an upma.
You can store leftover idli in the fridge for 3 – 5 days in an airtight container.
If you try this recipe and love it, please leave a comment and a rating. This helps us grow and reach other food lovers like you.
Instant Rava Idli Recipe
- 1 Cup semolina (rava/sooji)
- 1 ¼ Cup yogurt (curd), at room temperature
- 2 tablespoon ghee (clarified butter)
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds (rai)
- 1 teaspoon white urad dal
- 1 teaspoon chana dal (Bengal Gram)
- a pinch of asafoetida (hing)
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds (jeera)
- 4 – 5 curry leaves
- ¼ Cup fine chopped carrot
- Salt to taste
- ¼ Cup water
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
Ingredients For Garnish:
- 8 cashew nuts
- 8 curry leaves
- In a pan heat ghee over medium heat once ghee is heated add mustard seeds and saute for few seconds.
- As mustard seeds start crackling add dal, asafoetida, cumin seeds, curry leaves and saute for 2 – 3 minutes.
- Now add chopped carrot and fry for 1 – 2 minutes or till carrot turn a bit soft.
- Add semolina to the tempering mixture and roast it over medium heat for 3 – 5 minutes. Stirring continuously while roasting.
- Turn off the flame and transfer semolina to a bowl. Set aside until it cools down to room temperature.
- Combine tempered semolina, curd, salt and water in a bowl to prepare idli batter. The batter should be of dropping consistency and not too runny if required add more water to get the right consistency. Cover the bowl with a lid and set aside for 5 minutes.
- Prepare your idli steamer and grease the mold with little ghee to avoid idli sticking to the mould.
- Prepare a microwave safe steamer. Grease idli molds with ghee or cooking oil.
- Place a piece of cashew and curry leaf in each idli mold.
- Once the steamer is ready, add fruit salt to the idli batter and stir nicely to combine evenly. The idli batter will turn frothy immediately pour a spoonful of batter in each mold.
- Close the lid of the steamer and steam idlis in the microwave for 5 – 6 minutes while in gas steamer it takes 10 minutes.
- To check idlis for doneness insert toothpick and check if it comes out clean else microwave for 1 – 2 minutes more.
- With the help of a spoon remove idlis from the mold. Transfer to a plate.
- Use ghee for preparing the tempering. It gives a nice taste to the idli.
- Allow roasted idli mixture to cool down completely before combining it with curd or water.
- The instant idli batter should be of dropping consistency and not thick or dry. To get the right consistency either use water or curd.
- Resting idli batter for a short span of time before mixing fruit salt/cooking soda helps semolina absorbing moisture and flavors in a better way and tend to produce moist, mouth-melting idlis.
- Try to use neutral-flavored cooking soda or fruit salt to avoid ending up with fruity tasting idlis.
- After adding fruit salt or baking soda do not mix it for too long. As soon the batter starts frothing pour spoonful of it in idli cavities (stand). Hence, it is important to keep the steamer ready beforehand.
- Steam the idli in the microwave for 5 minutes. And then allow them to sit in there for another one minute before opening the lid. Insert a toothpick and check for doneness. If not cooked, microwave for 1 – 2 minutes more.
- Microwave safe steamer does not require any preheating. But if you are using a gas steamer to make idlis than you need to heat water in the steamer before pouring the batter into the molds.
- Equipment Required: Microwave Safe Steamer (Buy It Here)