Ramassery idli is unique in ingredient, texture and cooking technique. But perhaps what makes it most interesting is that its recipe is carefully preserved by four families living in the village of Ramassery, near Palakkad, in Kerala. Traditionally, the Ramassery idli is made only with rice sourced from Palakkad; the idlis are then cooked over a muslin-covered earthen pot, and de-moulded using a specific leaf that lends a subtle fragrance to the rice cake. The idlis are served with podi made from Palakkadan Matta rice and a complex blend of spices. You can pair it with Kerala-style sambar or a generous portion of chicken curry.

  • Serves


  • Cook Time


    Plus 7 hours for marination


  • 4 cups raw rice
  • 4 cups ponni rice
  • 2 cups split urad dal
  • 1 tsp fenugreek
  • Sea salt to taste 


  1. Soak the rice for 30 minutes, and separately soak urad dal and fenugreek for 20 minutes.
  2. Grind the rice and separately grind the urad dal-fenugreek. Mix together and let the batter ferment for 6 hours.
  3. Place a muslin cloth on the mouth of a narrow-necked earthen vessel and secure tightly with string.
  4. Make small holes in the cloth.
  5. Fill the vessel with water, and bring it to a boil.
  6. Now place a wet muslin cloth over this, and pour the idli batter onto it.
  7. Cover the batter with another earthen vessel as lid. Allow to steam for 5 minutes.
  8. To remove, gently de-mould the idli using a banana leaf, and peel the muslin cloth gently off the top.
  9. Your home-cooked Ramaserry idli is now ready to eat.
Regi Mathew

Regi Mathew

Regi Mathew, co-owner and culinary director of Kappa Chakka Kandhari in Chennai and Bengaluru, is Scroll Food’s Chef of the Month for September. His culinary career, which began with the Taj Group of Hotels, has taken him to several countries, where he has learnt many cuisines. After 25 years in the F&B industry, he decided to closely explore the cuisine of his home state, Kerala. For three years, he travelled through the state, researching its food, and working with 265 housewives and 70 toddy shops, some of whom are now part of the restaurant’s kitchen. He has won several accolades in his career, including being adjudged the Chef of the Year at the Times Food Awards, Chennai, in 2018.

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