Moong and Udad Dal Idli (aka Dal Idli or Dali Santhan) – A Mangalore/Konkani Speciality

Moong and Urad Dal Idlis - Dali Santhan - Konkani Recipe
Moong and Urad Dal Idlis – Dali Santhan
The moment I saw the recipe for a Lentils & Semolina Idli on Annapoorna Prabhu Sanoor‘s blog, I just knew I HAD to try it. After reading her recipe, I did a bit of research on the Internet (as is wont) and found several similar recipes. I finally made it without the semolina, but the inspiration remains Annapoorna’s post.

Do visit Annapoorna Prabhu Sanoor‘s blog; more importantly do get a copy of her Mangalore Cookbook:Breakfast & Teatime Recipes, which seems to be a treasure trove of traditional Mangalorean cuisine.

Now, without further ado, I present Dal Idli also known as Dali Santhan.

A santhan is a spongy idli that is steamed in a plate instead of a traditional idli mould.

Serves: 4

Preparation Time: 16 Hours

Cooking Time: 10 Mins


  1. Moong Dal – 3/4 Cup
  2. Udad Dal – 1 Cup
  3. Fenugreek Seeds – 1/2 tsp
  4. Green Chillies – 3 or 4
  5. Grated Ginger – 1 tsp
  6. Turmeric Powder – A Large Pinch
  7. Salt to Taste
  8. Oil for Greasing the Mould

Method to Make the Batter

  1. Soak the udad dal and fenugreek seeds together in 2 cups of water for 4 hours.
  2. In parallel, soak moong dal separately in 2 cups of water.
  3. After 4 hours, drain the water completely from the two dals.
  4. Grind each dal separately into a thick batter of pouring consistency.
  5. Mix the two batters and some salt together by hand. Mixing by hand aids fermentation.
  6. Set aside to ferment for about 10 hours in a large vessel. The batter will nearly double in volume, so use a large enough vessel. 
  7. When the batter has fermented, add finely chopped green chillies, grated ginger, and turmeric.
  8. Mix with a gentle hand.

Method to Make Idlis

  1. Grease an idli mould.
  2. Pour enough batter into the mould.
  3. Steam in a pressure cooker for about 7-8 minutes.
  4. Let the cooker cool for 10 minutes.
  5. Serve the Dal Idli hot with some Coriander Chutney.



  1. Wow! I have to try this! I eat dosa and idli rarely as I’m reducing white rice in my diet. It leaves me and my husband craving for idli, dosa. This recipe looks perfect! Thank u so much for the post. U have no idea the big favor u have done! 😀

  2. Hi Aharam,
    I just hopped by from Virtual Vegan Potluck to experience your Moong and Udad Dal Idli. What an amazing recipe! I love anything which includes green chilies, ginger and turmeric. I can’t wait to try this recipe. What a pleasure to explore your recipes. I blog at and I am sharing this and following you on social media to stay in touch! All the best, Deborah

  3. I am just waiting for the day when will go back to India and buy one idli mould. Then I will try all your idli recipes…… :D…….Dal Idli looks gorgeous Aruna…….. 🙂

  4. Love, love, love, love, love, love idli. It’s maybe one of my all time favorite dishes. I’ve never made it with mung dal, so this I will have to try — soon. 🙂

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