Thayir Idli

Revisiting an old recipe with updated picture and step by step pictures. This refreshing snack is perfect for the summer!

Here you go with the earlier post:

Usually when I call my friends, just after saying “hello”, the first thing I ask is “are you busy”? I like to talk to a person when he or she is relaxed and not in a rush. Are you also like that? So let me ask you, are you busy now? Because I’m in a mood to chat today. If you are busy… no probs, go finish your work and come back, I’ll wait for you.

So the other day I told you I was in Kerala, right? The thing is… after our India trip in March, we didnt even put back our suitcases. Yep, we were planning another trip, but not to India. It’s been sometime we had a proper travel holiday. For the past 2-3 years, whenever we plan a trip, it gets jinxed! So this time, we wanted to make it happen so badly and planned ahead for a three week long holiday, everything was almost ready. But…. ten days before our trip, Jose got a flu. We slowed down our trip planning a bit, so that he could take rest and recover fast. Hhmmm… but the flu had more determination than our desire to go for holiday. Anyways, it was good that our suitcases were still outside, because within a day’s notice, we traveled to India. The day we landed (just before Easter), I was down with fever! There you go… So that’s the story about being in India again so soon.

Now this brings me back to the very question that Jose and myself always discuss about. Whether we should plan things or not? Since, nothing in my life has happened as per plans, I thought “planning” is not somebody I can trust completely and so I decided to part ways. But Jose is a believer in planning and gives more chances to him and they continue to be friends. So are you a friend of “planning” or not?

Btw, did I tell you… I’m back in Bahrain now. Reached here yesterday night. I’m happy to be back mainly for one reason… it’s sooooo hot back home. (Sounds silly when say you are going back to the Middle East, because its hotter in India!) Oh, and don't forget the official and unofficial power cuts! So here's something that helps you to stay cool.

I used to have “thayir idli” regularly during my college days. After my classes, I used to go straight to Tesschechy’s (my aunt’s) house and she used to make this for me, whenever they had Idli for breakfast. I remember being fascinated with mini idlis during my childhood days and I should say the fascination still continues.

So next time you make idlis at home, try this one. It’s healthy, refreshing, tasty and super easy! We made it once for a tea party at home along with some cookies and cakes, but this turned out to be the star attraction!

Here is the recipe…

Thayir Idli
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Thayir Idli (Dahi Idli)

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Servings: 3 -4
Author: Maria Jose


  • 18 Mini Idlis (refer notes)
  • 2 cups Yogurt (preferably non sour)
  • 2 tbsp Grated Coconut
  • 2 Green chilli
  • 1/2 - 1 tsp Ginger (chopped)
  • 1-2 tsp Sugar
  • 1 Small Onion (finely chopped)
  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup Kara boondi / sev (refer notes)
  • 2 tbsp Small / pearl onion (sliced)
  • 1-2 Dried red chilli
  • Curry leaves
  • 2-3 tbsp Coriander leaves (chopped)
  • 1/4 cup Milk (optional)
  • Salt
  • Oil


  • Grind together coconut, green chilli and ginger to a smooth paste with 1/2 -1 tbsp water.
    Step 1 Thayir Idli
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  • Whisk the yoghurt well. Add the coconut paste to the whisked yogurt and combine.
    Step 2 Thayir Idli
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  • Add finely chopped onion, salt and sugar to this mix.
    Step 3 Thayir Idli
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  • Add chopped coriander leaves to this and mix well.
    Step 4 Thayir Idli
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  • Add mini idlis to this and combine everything together.
    Step 5 Thayir Idli
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  • Heat oil in a pan and fry the sliced small onion, dry red chilli, ginger and curry leaves till the onion turns golden brown. Add this to the idli mix. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours. Serve chilled
    Step 6 Thayir Idli
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  • Just before serving, garnish with kara boondi/sev and chopped coriander leaves. If you add the kara boondi and sev and refrigerate, it might turn soggy.


You can also use regular size idlis to make this. Just cut it into small pieces and follow the recipe.
If you dont have mini idli tins, but still want to make it, here you go... steam idli batter in a cake tin. Once it is done, cool it and cut out mini idli's using a round cookie cutter or bottle cap.
You can also use grated carrots to make it extra healthy. Just add it along with chopped onion.
If you feel that the idli's have become hard, add around 1/4 cup of milk and keep for 5 mins, before serving. It will soften the idlis.
You can use Kara Boondi or Kerala Mixture or any fried savory snack as a garnish. 
Tried this recipe? Let others know by...mentioning @mariasmenu or tagging #mariasmenu
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31 thoughts on “Thayir Idli”

  1. We tried it out yesterday. And it turned out to be such a ridiculously simple yet such a lip smacking dessert! Our guests shamelessly asked for more. By the way, we made it with those miniature ‘Mysore idlis’. In the sweltering heat of Chennai, ‘Thayir Idli’ is a godsend!

    Thank you so much, Maria.

  2. Hi Maria, 
      My wife and I are planning to try out this lip smackin’ recipe. We plan using ordinary ‘idlis’ cut into small pieces.

  3. yeah maria ….about planning …i too feel the same way 5 years into married life…some things just seem to  follow the Above Ones plans for us  rather than our plan for Ourselves…(ironically) and yeah hubbies have to be more practical minded which follows that they do have to be planned in advance….anywayss like they say ningalude vishwasam ningale rakshikette…
    meanwhile…planning to try out thayir idli this weekend…
    Hope all yr plans work out soon :)

  4. Hi Maria,
    Great Idea… I’m gonna try this soon. I have a request to u. Check out the site and can you somehow add the “Pin It” button for your site, please? So whoever wants can Pin your recipes to their Pinterest board. 

    • Thank you Smitha. I do hope you will like it. Btw, I’ve already seen some people pinning my recipes there, I dont know how they did it…Thanks for your suggestion, we will check it out and see how it works :)


      • Hi Maria,
        I found out how to Pin your recipes in Pinterest and I Pinned it too…First you need to have a Pin It bookmarklet installed in your PC, then using that you can Pin whatever you want. But its a good idea to have the Pin It button in your site itself, like the Like button for facebook. 
        Thanks for the reply. 
        Btw, I had tried a lot of your recipes and all came out really good. My favorites are carrot cake and plum cake…. 

        • Hi Smitha,

          Thanks a lot for your suggestion, because we’ve added it in our site :) Now you’ve a pin it option under each recipe. Please check out the blue tab at the end of each recipe. 

          Nice to know that you’ve liked the recipes tried from here. Thanks dear :)


  5. You r truly amazing…I had my doubts abt combining yoghurt and idlis (both sour)….but I tried it today evening, and it was superb….count me in in ur fan list…I jus regret not having found your blog sooner…we have lived in the same part of the world for so long but surprisingly, our paths have never crossed….anyways…never too late….

  6. I am exactly like you when i call up someone And thats exactly teh same thing I ask, if they are busy! About planning, I do plan when it comes to events and big stuffs….I do, thats just because i dont want to get stressed doing things at the last minute. Hubby is a big time planner and his planning never ends…

    Nice recipe. II have had thair vada which is one of my faves. Thair idly is new!

    • Hey Shabs,

      Good to know that we have something in common :) Even Jose plans big time, but I’m more like taking each day as it comes ;) except for cooking for guests…


  7. This looks fantastic and yes it is very hot here in India ….i love mini idlis too ! Everything i try out from your blog turns out so well ….thank-you Maria will make this soon and tell you how it was! 

  8. Yesterday I made some idlis and they did not rise up probabily the batter was a bit watery.They are with me and I was at a loss what to do with them.I am going to try this recipee and try to get back my reputation. Hope it works.
    Regarding planning, I plan everything very carefully. But external events or unanticipated events may spook my plans.Therefore we need to plan for that too.
    Regarding your stay in Kerala,God’s own country has become a living hell.The power comes and goes at least ten times a day.Owning air conditioners is no use because during every outage one will have to open the doors and windows. How many times can one do that.?
    Rivers are filled with filth.Still Keraliltes bath, brush their teeth,wash their cloth in such water. Public toilets are so drity that no one can even walk near them. Every house hold has some one abroad and hence people are aware of the clean surroundings people in other countries live.Still we refuse to live cleanly.Every one educated or other wise puts their waste on the road in front.Roadsare full of spittle.
    You are lucky to have a place to go.
    By the way how do you make good idlis? Please give  the proportions and incredients like cooked rice,fenugreek, par bolied rice etc

    • Hi Syriac,

      Hope this recipe worked for you…

      Yeah last minute changes can happen in planning, but at least if you plan something, there will be some clarity. That’s what my husband says :)

      I’ll try to post the Idli recipe sometime..


  9. Hiiii maria..welcome back…was really missg u..hope u r fine nw after fever..yes nw a days krla climate is unsahikablee…even i too think the same way..thank u for the lovely refreshing recipe…take care


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