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Foxtail Millet Idli - Thinai Idli

Foxtail Millet Idlis are made using the rava of foxtail millet. A delicious whole grain idli with a lot of nutrition, perfect for a filling healthy breal
Prep Time 8 hrs
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 16 hrs 20 mins
Course Breakfast
Cuisine south indian
Servings 32 piece


  • 1 cup dal whole or split udad (without skin)
  • 1 tsp fenugreek seeds (optional)
  • 2 cups millet rava foxtail (or use 1 cup and 1 cup rice)
  • 2 tsps salt
  • veggies finely chopped to add to idlis
  • 1/2 tsp ginger mustard seeds chana dal chillies Grated , , , red tempered in oil to add to batter before steaming


To prepare Foxtail Millet Idli Batter

  • Soak the urad dal + fenugreek seeds in plenty of water.
  • In another bowl, soak the rava in water that covers it completely. After 3 hours, drain water from urad dal and grind to a fine paste in the mixer or wet grinder. Remove in a big bowl.
  • Squeeze all the water from the foxtail millet rava and grind this to a fine paste too.
  • Add to the udad dal paste and mix well, adding salt. Add upto 1/2 cup water if batter is very thick.
  • Place in a large container with a fitting lid. This will expand to nearly double volume over 8-10 hours, so keep accordingly in a sizable container.
  • Once fermented, you can either use this immediately to make idlis / dosa or place in refrigerator immediately and use when required (within next 3-4days).

To prepare Foxtail Millet / Thinai Idlis

  • Remove the required quantity of batter in a bowl.
  • To make idlis, lightly grease the idli moulds with oil, pour batter into each mould (not more than half capacity), top with any chopped veggies if required, close the pressure cooker lid but remove the weight so that it acts as a steamer and doesn't pressure cook.
  • If you have a special idli maker, then use that. Keep the flame on high and then reduce to medium once the steam is in full flow. Steam for around 12 minutes on medium flame. Open the cooker after 10 minutes or so, removing the idli stand. Sprinkle some cold water on top of each mould and with a sharp edged steel spatula or a knife, unmould each idli cleanly.
  • Serve with any chutney or your choice, or molagapodi or ketchup for the kids.