Last updated on April 29th, 2020
Idli podi or idli milagai podi is the best ever side dish for idli, dosa. A big jar of this idli podi is indispensable in any south Indian home. It is a savior when we don’t have time to make chutney or idli sambar. You can make this gun powder is many ways and here is my recipe for best idli milagai podi.
Idli podi also known as gun powder is my all time favorite side dish for idli. I would choose this podi over sambar or chutney any day. I make sure to stock three or four varieties of idli podi at home always 🙂 Smeared with sesame oil or ghee, this along with idlis is one satiating breakfast or lunch or dinner 🙂
If you are unfamiliar, idli podi or idli milagai podi is a dry powder made of lentils, red chilies and some spices. When you mix this powder with ghee or sesame oil, you get a flavorful condiment to serve with idli. Milagai means chili in Tamil and hence the name milagai podi.
Soft idlis, smeared with podi and ghee or oil is the perfect travel food. We always looked forward to the train journeys where we would have this super tempting tiffin packed. The podi idlis develop flavor over the hours and tastes wonderful.
Now this podi tastes good not only with idli, also dosa & curd rice. yes if you are yet to try idli podi with curd, do try out now. It is as delicious 🙂
At home we simply love this podi and there are many variations we stock up. All homemade, I have never seen any one I know buying idli podi from stores.
It is mostly because the taste preference heavily varies and every home has its own proportions of ingredients. The recipe I am sharing here is a special one in our family. It is spicy yet very very flavorful and delicious. You will find some peanuts and cashews in the recipe and it makes all the difference.
If you notice the pictures, you will find the consistency of the podi is fairly coarse. That is how we like it at our home. It should have a bite. We never make a fine powder but you can always grind it to fine powder if you want.
You can make and store this powder in bulk if you want. But I always make once in 15 days to keep the flavors intact and fresh. However if you make in bulk you can store in freezer so that it stays fresh.
This Idli Podi Recipe Is
Vegan & can be made gluten free by skipping asafoetida
Easy, quick and simple
Very delicious & flavorful
Best ever side dish for idli
To make idli podi you will need
- lentils – split husked black gram or urad dal, split chickpeas or chana dal
- Chilies- dried red chilies. You can use any variety. Here I have used kashmiri red chilies that gives more color and less spicy. Do note that in south India idli podi is made with really spicy varieties of chilies. if you can handle the spice, go for it.
- Asafoetida- Good quality asafoetida adds a wonderful flavor to this milagai podi
- Add-ons– There are so many other ingredients you can add to make this podi more flavorful. Few of my favorites are curry leaves, sesame seeds, peanuts, flax seeds, horse gram, cashews, garlic. Please refer variations for details.
While most of the recipes ask you to fry the lentils and other ingredients one by one, it is not really needed. I usually fry all the lentils in low flame until golden and then dry roast the chilies.
You can also dry roast the lentils but frying them in little oil is makes more flavorful idli podi. Here is a step by step guide for making idli milagai podi
How To Make Idli Milagai Podi
1. Heat 1 teaspoon sesame oil in a pan. Add all the measured lentils, cashews and peanuts. Mix and fry till oil coats all the ingredients and then turn golden. Remove to a plate and let cool
2. In the same pan add asafoetida and dried red chilies. Saute till the red chilies slightly change color and asafoetida is well coated to the chilies. Allow to cool thoroughly.
3. Take all the ingredients in your dry grinding jar and grind for few seconds. Add salt and grind again as coarse or fine you need.
4. Store idli podi in a clean dry bottle or jar.
Tips For Making Best Idli Podi
Make sure your lentils, cashews and peanuts are fresh and not rancid. If you are making in large quantities you can keep the ingredients under sun for few hours and then make the recipe.
Always fry the lentils and other ingredients in low flame
Sesame oil elevates the flavor and also cools down the spice from chilies.
You can vary the proportion of any ingredient to suit your taste.
Add kashmiri red chilies for vibrant yet less spicy powder.
You can keep the texture coarse or fine as per your taste
Variations With Idli Podi
As I mentioned above there are tons of variations you can make in this recipe.
With Tamarind- Adding a small piece of tamarind adds flavor and slightly tangy taste to this milagai podi.
With garlic- to make poondu milagai podi just fry 6-8 cloves of garlic along with chilies
Curry leaves- If you like the flavor of curry leaves,you can add add a handful along with chilies
How To Serve Idli Podi?
For one serving- Take 4 tablespoons of podi and smear with ghee or sesame oil. Serve this as condiment with idli, dosa or curd rice. You can also smear hot idlis with podi and pack for lunch.
Always keep the podi in a clean dry jar with tight lid. This keeps well for a month at room temperature. You can also store in fridge.
More Side dish Recipes For Idli
I hope you will try this idli podi recipe and enjoy as much as we did. P
Idli Podi Recipe
Idli Podi Recipe
- 1/2 cup channa dal
- 1/2 cup urad dal
- 1/4 cup peanuts
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds white or black
- 10 cashews
- 15 dried red chillies
- 1/2 teaspoon asafoetida
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- sesame oil or ghee as required
- Heat 1 teaspoon sesame oil in a pan. Add urad dal, channa dal, cashes, peanuts and sesame seeds. Fry in low flame until aromatic.
- Remove to a plate and let cool
- In the same pan add asafoetida and dried red chilies. Saute till the red chilies slightly change color and asafoetida is well coated to the chilies. Allow to cool thoroughly.
- Take all the ingredients in your dry grinding jar and grind for few seconds. Add salt and grind again as coarse or fine you need.
- Store idli podi in a clean dry bottle or jar.
- Mix 3-4 tablespoons podi with ghee or sesame oil and serve with idli
- You can few sprigs of curry leaf along with red chilies.
- You can add whole urad dal (black one with skin) too instead of husked urad dal.