PANIYARAM (Rice & Lentil Cakes)

October is always an action-packed and special month for me. Besides festivities of Navratri and Dussehra, there are two very special birthdays followed by Diwali. October, therefore kept me on my toes, and I really don’t know how but I managed to keep the wheels of the blog turning by uploading Diwali related posts.

I miss not being able to visit your beautiful blogs. But so glad to be back to the mundane and the routine 😀

Crazy binging happened all through October and I am particularly guilty of indulging my sweet tooth in decadent desserts such as Moong Dal Halwa, Gulab Jamuns and Malpua Rabdi. After all the sugar rush that my body experienced, I am more than glad to be back to regular meals. We are so happy lapping up a bowl of dal with rice and a simple sabzi for a side. And enjoying piece of dark chocolate for dessert.

I had earlier shared my recipe for left over Idlis. Today I am sharing a recipe for left over Idli batter. It is healthy and delicious and one that comes together in minutes. You can use store brought batter or use home made batter (have shared recipe in this post) for making this. I sometimes make extra idli batter just so I can enjoy these paniyarams, also called appe or appams made in a pan which is same as an Æbleskiver

These can be enjoyed for a snack or for breakfast. You can pack them for tiffin or picnic. There is always a side of some kind chutney to go with these. I have provided links to some chutneys, towards the end of the post, that you can make and enjoy them with.

There is also a recipe for a scrumptious Tomato Chutney that I have shared in the later part of the post.


For Batter

1½ C Idli Batter*

2 tbsp boiled Green Peas

2 – 3 tbsp finely shredded Carrot

½ – 1 tsp very finely chopped Ginger

1 – 2 finely chopped Green Chilies (adjust amount to taste)

2 tbsp finely chopped Fresh Coriander (Cilantro)

Salt to taste

For Tempering

2 tsp Oil

1 tsp Mustard Seeds

2 tsp Dhuli Urad Dal (Ivory Lentils)

2 tsp Chana Dal

A pinch Asafoetida

Mix all the ingredients under the ‘batter’ category and set aside.

For tempering, heat oil in a small frying pan and add mustard seeds. As soon as the mustard seeds begin to crackle, add ivory lentils and chana dal. Fry till both lentils turn golden brown. Add asafoetida and cook for five to ten seconds. Remove from heat and add the tempering to the batter. Mix well.

Heat an appe / paniyaram pan / Æbleskiver and add a little oil inside the cavities. Fill the cavities with the batter and cook covered on low medium heat for a minute or till the bottom becomes nicely golden and the top begins to set.

Flip carefully and cook the other side for half a minute or till thoroughly cooked. (the cooking time will depend on the kind of pan you are using, whether cast iron or non stick and also on amount of heat you are providing for cooking)

Remove the paniyaram from the pan and serve hot or at room temperature with chai and chutney of your choice.

Note – For crunchiness, I make some extra tempering and pour a tiny bit in every hole before topping it with the batter. I also add a tiny curry leaf. It tempering makes for nice optics and also adds texture.

In case you wish to make your own IDLI BATTER*, this is what you need to do…

Separately wash one cup of idli rice and half a cup of ivory lentils. Soak them separately for six hours in enough water. Add half a teaspoon of fenugreek seeds to the ivory lentils while soaking it. Discard the water in which the rice and dal were soaked. Pulse the the rice and dal (separately) to attain a paste adding very little chilled water. (the rice may be wee bit sandy in its texture but that is fine) Mix both the batters and ensure that the batter is not too thick. Add some water, if required, to attain a batter of medium thickness. Cover the batter and leave it to ferment, undisturbed, overnight or depending on the weather where you live. It requires anywhere between eight to twelve hours of fermentation.

YIELD – 12 – 16 Paniyarams (depending on size)


1½ tbsp Cooking Oil (I use cold pressed Peanut Oil)

225 – 250 gm Ripe Red Tomato, washed and diced

2 Green Chilies, washed (the amount depends on how hot you prefer the chutney)

2 fat cloves Garlic, peeled and washed (For those who don’t eat garlic, can swap it with half an inch of root Ginger)

2 tbsp chopped fresh Coriander (Cilantro)

10 – 12 Peanuts, toasted (those allergic to nuts can swap it with roasted Chana/ Bhuna Chana)

1 tsp White Sesame Seeds, toasted

Salt to taste

¼ – ½ tsp Jaggery Powder or Sugar (adjust to taste and add more if required)

Heat oil in a frying pan and add green chilies, broken in two pieces. Immediately add the diced tomatoes.

Lower heat and cover the pan. Cook the tomatoes for 7 – 10 minutes (time will depend on how ripe the tomatoes are), stirring once in between.

Remove the pan from heat and allow the contents to cool completely.

Blitz tomatoes with the rest of the ingredients, except salt. The chutney should have a smooth texture.

Decant the chutney in a bowl and add salt. Mix well and done!

(I advise you make a larger batch coz it disappears really fast 😊 )

I have provided link to couple of other Chutney recipes that go well with this dish…

Coconut Chutney 

Coconut & Roasted Green Tomato Chutney

Thanks for your visit and see you soon again with another exciting recipe!

12 thoughts on “PANIYARAM (Rice & Lentil Cakes)

  1. A very different and delicious rice cake recipe. I wish I could taste one :-)) I love the add of lentils. Definitely something I am going to try next time.

  2. These rice and lentil cakes look and sound amazing! And your photography+styling is simply gorgeous, I’m absolutely in love with all the pictures here 🙂

  3. These rice lentil cakes look delicious! Thanks for sharing and linking to all those amazing chutney recipes you’ve got too. I love a good home made chutney.

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