best idlis of chennai - share more if you know
The Murugan success story began in Madurai with their ultra-soft idlis. The southern Tamil Nadu-style idli, served with four trademark chutneys, has made the Murugan franchise one of Chennai’s most popular options for idlis. Add their idli powder and sambar and that’s half a dozen accompaniments that regulars keep coming back for. (Multiple locations including GN Chetty Road, T Nagar and Besant Nagar)
Triplicane Ratna Café
Not many Chennaites know that it was a man from Mathura who set up this institution 70 years ago. Until recently, the restaurant’s cult status ensured diners would make the trek through Triplicane’s busy streets to sample their ‘sambar idly’. It’s now expanded into a chain and a whole new generation of fans is figuring out whether it’s the grainy ‘idlys’ or their legendary sambar (a proprietary recipe) that is the secret of their success. (Multiple locations including Kilpauk Garden Road)
Menaka Restaurant, Palmgrove Hotel
For decades, the ‘Udupi’ restaurant was Chennai’s byword for a high-quality vegetarian meal. That’s changed with the city’s homegrown restaurant chains. Palmgrove is a throwback to the old-school Udupi restaurant and their grainy idlis continue to pull in the crowds. Good luck scoring a table for breakfast on Sunday. (Kodambakkam High Road)
It’s 14 idlis, not 15, or a baker’s dozen. It was probably Saravana Bhavan that first unleashed the mini idli–the coin-sized rice cakes dunked in a tub of sambar with reassuring traces of melted ghee. The signature 14 Idli continues to be one of the restaurant chain’s most popular dishes in locations as diverse as Dallas and Paris, but it probably tastes best in Chennai. (Multiple locations including RK Salai)
Seena Bhai Tiffin Center
Located on one of the busiest streets in one of Chennai’s oldest neighbourhoods, this pokey eatery opens its shutters as the sun goes down. The kitchen keeps pace with the long queues of diners. Most line up for the podi idli—bite-sized idlis drenched in ghee and dusted with fiery idli powder, or gunpowder. (NSC Bose Road)
If Bengalureans frequent A2B (Adyar Ananda Bhavan) outlets for a taste of the spicier Chennai sambar, Eating Circles returns the favour. This brand-new chain brings a taste of popular Bengaluru tiffin staples with the slightly sweeter sambar. Their most popular item is the thatte idli, which was first made famous in Bidadi just outside Bengaluru. This flat, large idli is almost a meal by itself and smothered with a generous amount of idli powder. (Poonamallee High Road, Kilpauk and CP Ramaswamy Road, Alwarpet)
Krishna Restaurant, New Woodlands Hotel
This iconic Udupi brand has stood the test of time. During the city’s month-long music season, the hotel is a refuge for rasikas, or aficionados of Carnatic music. But it’s also the holy grail for Udupi cuisine in Chennai, along with other iconic restaurants like Mathysa. The restaurant peaks during tiffin time (that never-ending space between lunch and dinner in Chennai) when diners usually pick from their Udupi specials, which include the rava idli. It’s Chennai’s best rava idli by a distance. (Radhakrishnan Salai)
Guna Bhai Tiffin Centre
This nondescript eatery is located in the heart of Sowcarpet, an area that’s home to the city’s enterprising Marwari community and also a haven for street food. Their audacious reinterpretation of the mini idli–Schezwan idli, tossed in an interesting spice mix and fried along with capsicum and onion, is one of the bestsellers. (Mint Street, Sowcarpet)
The noodle samosa may be the signature dish at this vegetarian multi-cuisine restaurant, but it’s the fried idlis that sell the most. Calorie-counters please excuse. (Venkatakrishna Iyer Road, RA Puram)
Vegetarian restaurants may have popularised the idli, but in many homes across Tamil Nadu, the quintessential Sunday breakfast includes idli with a chicken or mutton gravy. Kozhi Idli is one of many Chennai restaurants where you can savour soft idlis with a flavoursome kozhi kuzhmabu (chicken gravy). (Crescent Avenue Road, Gandhi Nagar, Adyar) more
regarding your article , i beg to differ.
i personally did not like the Murugan idly. i stopped visiting their outlets alltogether.
the best idlys as per my opinion, was at ISKCON GOVINDA RESTAURANT at Tirupati, Iskcon hyderabad, and Iskcon rajamundry.
their idly was soft, and same time cispy.i think they dont grind the rice as paste, but use rice powder in rava form to mix with urad dhal batter to make idly batter.
i am still looking out for their recipes on how to make their exact idlys at my home.
can you suggest the exact recipe.?
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Murugan Idli Shop
The Murugan success story began in Madurai with their
ultra-soft idlis. The southern Tamil Nadu-style idli, served
with four trademark chutneys, has made the Murugan franchise
one of Chennaiâs most popular options for idlis. Add their
idli powder and sambar and thatâs half a dozen
accompaniments that regulars keep coming back for. (Multiple
locations including GN Chetty Road, T Nagar and Besant
Triplicane Ratna CafÃ©
Not many Chennaites know that it was a man from Mathura who
set up this institution 70 years ago. Until recently, the
restaurantâs cult status ensured diners would make the
trek through more...
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