For idli lovers
Savour idlis with a variety of chutneys
OUT HERE, it is not referred to as baked rice cakes served with assorted traditional Indian chutneys and lentils simmered in spices and garnished with herbs (sambar).
Idli is just idli in the Madurai Idli stall, on the bustling Nanjappa Road (near Koushika Pharmacy). As for the chutneys, you have quite a variety. On any given day, you can dip a piece of fluffy idli into five chutneys - coconut, tomato, pudina, malli and kadalai - and fragrant sambar.
At times, depending on the season, the main ingredient that goes into the chutney is changed.
The name itself is a crowd puller. Though this shop does not have its origins in Madurai, known for its soft idlis and chutneys served through the day and night, it comes close to the original. Idlis (Rs. 7 a plate) are served for breakfast up to 11 a.m. After that, it is time for variety rice and flaky parotta served with kurma.
At 3.30 p.m., the idli master gets busy again. From then, till well into the night, as many as 600 piping hot idlis are turned out of the huge idli plates and onto waiting customers' plates.
"Our clientele mostly comprises travellers, since we are very close to the bus stand. But, idli-loving families come in in the evenings to savour our fare," says Shekar, manager.
But, be a little wary of the chilli content in the chutneys, though. Some of them rate really high on the spice scale.
This small no-frills stall is also popular with office-goers who find its reasonably priced variety rice and biriyani easy on the tongue.
The eatery also serves plain and onion-topped oothappam (Rs. 8 & Rs. 15) and roast (Rs. 12 &15).
SUBHA J RAO
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