Idli varieties are about adding delicious flavours to the Plain Idli. Idlis are one of my favourite breakfast dishes. Hot steaming idlis, served with mildly spiced coconut chutney and piping hot Sambhar is an unmatched prospect first thing in the morning. But there are people who feel that the Idli can have a bit of a flavour, to take away the blandness of the taste. For example, my entire family does not share my enthusiasm for the Idlis. My elder brother thinks that Idlis are just steamed rice cakes – where is the flavour? My niece, Abhinaya, was once a fan but she is not anymore. Truth be told, classic plain Idlis can be too bland for some people. Many people want flavours in their food, and idlis are no different. So how can you give a flavourful twist to the bland idli? This post is about using the same Idli Batter to reinvent the taste, and make the Idlis flavourful. Here are the five top reinventions, that I usually indulge in. You can use the normal Idli Batter for all these Idli varieties.

Kanchipuram Idlis

The Kanchipuram Idlis
After Plain Idlis, the Kanchipuram Idlis are my favourites.  There is a reason for that. Kanchipuram Idlis – the original version that is, is made at the famous Kanchipuram temple – where the presiding God is Varadharaja Perumal –  after whom, yours truly is named. They also call the Kanchipuram Idli the “Kovil Idli” (Temple Idli). There are quite a few outlets in Kanchipuram that serve the original Kanchipuram Idlis. You can read about the famous Kancheepuram Idli in an interesting article by R. Lakshmi and Deepa H. Ramakrishnan, called “In Search of Kancheepuram Idli” published in the online edition of The Hindu in 2016.

The “Original” Temple Idli

In the original Temple recipe, they steam the Kancheepuram Idlis in a glass and the idlis come out in the shape of a glass cone-shaped.  Outside of the temple town, of course, the Kanchipuram Idlis take the shape of the regular idlis. The taste, and the recipe, however, remains the same–delicious.


Kanchipuram Idli is a variant of Idli that has its history in the famous Kanchipuram Temple of Tamilnadu. It gives a delightful twist to the regular plain Idli
Course Breakfast
Cuisine south Indian


  • 5 Ladles Plain/ Regular Idli Batter
  • 1 tbsp Ghee or Clarified Butter
  • 1 tbsp Cooking Oil
  • 1 tsp Powdered Black Pepper
  • 1 tsp Jeera or Cumin
  • 5-6 pieces Cashewnuts
  • 10-12 Curry Leaves
  • 4-5 Raisins (Optional)
  • Salt To Taste


  • In a small kadhai, add the ghee and the cooking oil
  • After the oil is hot, turn the flame to low
  • Add the cumin and then the powdered pepper
  • Add the cashewnuts. Make sure they don’t get too heated as the cashews can turn burnt very quickly
  • Add the curry leaves and let them sputter.
  • Turn the flame off and add this mixture to the idli batter.
  • Add Salt. Make sure you are adding salt for the first time. If you are using an already used batch of batter, you would not need to add more salt.
  • Your Kanchipuram Idli batter is ready. Let it stand for ten minutes.
  • In an idli cooker, grease the plates with oil. Add the Kanchipuram Idli batter to the idli mould.
  • Let the idlis steam for 7-10 minutes. Once cooked, remove from the cooker. Sprinkle water on the steamed idlis
  • After five minutes, remove the idlis into a casserole
  • Serve hot with coconut chutney and Sambhar.
Keyword Authentic Kanchipuram Idlis recipe, How to make Kanchipuram Idlis, Kanchipuram Idli, Kanchipuram Idli Recipe

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