Friday, 1 October 2010

Couscous Idli (Couscous Steamed Savoury Cake)

Couscous Idli

One of the perils of moving out of my home country is that I cannot find many ingredients that I grew up eating. However, there is also a perk and that is access to a variety of other ingredients which I am fairly new to. Having been used to a certain way of cooking I should admit I struggle a bit to embrace the western diet though I do have my own favourites like a vegetable tartlet. I was also told by a doctor that it is better not to completely westernise our diet and continue with what we are used to else the body will struggle to cope and adapt. This may lead to some health issues mainly because the flora and fauna of the gut depends heavily on what we eat. So I tend to make a more Indian dish out of these western ingredients. In this recipe I have made a steamed savoury cake – idli out of the couscous. According to Wikipedia ‘Couscous granules are made by rolling and shaping moistened semolina wheat and then coating them with finely ground wheat flour. The finished granules are roughly spherical shape and about one millimeter in diameter before cooking.’ If you do not have the ‘idli plate’ to make idlis, just put the batter in ramekins and steam. Here is how I did it and this yielded 7-8 idlis. Keep the proportion same and increase or decrease quantity as desired.

1/3 cup rava (semolina)
1/3 cup couscous
1 grated carrot
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
2/3 cups yoghurt
1 teaspoon channa dal (optional)
Turmeric powder (optional)
1 Chopped green chilly (optional)
Salt as required
Cooking oil

Roast the rava in little oil or ghee until a nice aroma comes

In less than a teaspoon hot oil, allow the mustard seeds to crackle and add the channa dal and fry until they just begin to change colour.

Combine all other ingredients with roasted rava and mustard seeds and channa dal.

Add yoghurt and required amount of water (which could be around 1/3 cup) and mix well.

Pour the batter in idli plates or ramekins and steam for 10-15 minutes.

Serve with a nice chutney!

This is a healthy and neat finger food for your toddler and great tiffin for a light meal for us.


  1. This is an awesome idea..u hv a cute space here...

  2. That's a nice way to adapt to new ingredients :)