Surti White Idla Recipe

Surti White Idla

Surti White Idla, known as khatta idra or idada, famous street style snack of the Surat city of Gujarat, made with rice, lentils & some spices
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Soaking and Fermentation Time 1 day
Servings 6 Thali of Idla


Fermenting Ingredients

  • 3 cup White Rice either idli rice or jasmine rice
  • 1 cup Urad Dal or Whole Urad without skin
  • ¼ cup Thick Poha
  • 1 tsp Fenugreek Seeds
  • cup Water more or less, as needed


  • cup Whole Milk Plain Desi Yogurt
  • ¼ cup Peanut Oil
  • tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • tbsp Chopped Thai Green Chili
  • 1 tbsp Grated Ginger
  • ¼ tsp Asafetida/Hing
  • 3 tsp Eno Fruit Salt ¼ to ½ tsp for each steamed thali


  • 2 tbsp Peanut Oil any preferred oil
  • 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 2 tsp Sesame Seeds
  • ¼ tsp Asafetida
  • 6 Curry Leaves
  • 3 Slit Thai Green Chili or Serrano


  • ½ cup Fresh Chopped Cilantro
  • Freshly Cracked Black Pepper

Green Chutney

  • ½ bunch Fresh Cilantro
  • ½ cup Raw Peanuts
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • ½ tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp Sugar
  • 1 Serrano Pepper or 1-2 thai green chili
  • 1 tbsp Lime Juice


Make Green Chutney

  • Blend all green peanut chutney ingredients in a blender till smooth. Add water while blending to get desired consistency. Keep it refrigerated until ready to use.

Ferment the White Idla batter

  • Separately wash white rice and Urad dal multiple times.
  • Soak white rice along with poha and fenugreek seeds for 5-6 hours. Separately soak Urad dal for 5-6 hours.
  • After 5-6 hours, first grind urad dal in smooth paste like consistency. Try to use minimal water during this step, max ½ cup. Pour it out in a wide glass container.
  • Then grind soaked rice along with poha and fenugreek seeds in almost smooth, just a little grainy consistency. Try to use minimal water during this step, max 1 cup. Pour it out in the same wide glass container you have urad dal paste.
  • Now use your hand to mix the idla batter, making sure the batter consistency is poring consistency yet still a little thick. Using your hand to mix it for 3-5 minutes will add warmth to it which helps with fermentation process.
  • Cover the wide glass container tight, preferably air tight for 8 hours or over night in a warm place. Either keep it in the sun or in the oven that has light on but the oven itself is OFF.

Spice up and Steam the Idla

  • After 8 or more hours of fermenting, add in salt, sugar, asafetida, grated ginger and chopped thai green chili along with ⅓ cup of full fat desi sour yogurt and ¼ cup of oil. Mix it well, make sure you have pan cake batter like pouring consistency. Use water if you need to get that consistency.
  • Start boiling water in the steamer. Spread some oil in the thali you are going to steam the idla in, place it in the steamer while the water is boiling so that the thali starts to warm up.
  • While water is boiling, take some batter out (just enough for 1 thali of idla) in a small bowl. Add in ¼ tsp of Eno fruit salt and mix vigorously in just one direction. This will form up the batter.
  • Immediately pour the frothy batter into the thali that is inside the steamer. Spread it evenly in the thali, sprinkle some freshly cracked black pepper and/or red chili powder all over the thali.
  • Cover the steamer tight so that the steam holds inside. Steam it for upto 10-12 minutes.
  • Once steamed, take the thali out of the steamer, spread some oil on top and let it cool down for 5-7 minutes.
  • After few minutes, cut the idla in either square or diamond shapes. Take it out in a big wide bowl. Repeat the steaming process until all the batter is steamed into Idla. I usually end up with 6 thali of Idla, which can vary based on size of your steamer and thali, also depends on how thick or thin you make each thali of idla.
  • Prepare for tempering as described in next step once all the Idla is steamed, cut and placed in a big wide bowl. You can do tempering/tadka on each thali before cutting it or like me do it all at once after all idla is steamed.

Add tempering and garnishing

  • Heat up 2-3 tbsp of oil in a small pan. Once hot, add in mustard seeds and sesame seeds.
  • Once they are done popping half way through, add in slit thai green chilis/serrano along with curry leaves. Let it cook in oil for few seconds, then add in asafetida. Mix well and pour it on top of steamed idla evenly so that all square gets hint of tempering.
  • Garnish it with freshly chopped cilantro, serve it with mango ras or chai with side of Green Chutney (recipe mentioned above)!
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