Meet Idli Man, the man serving over 2000 varieties of idli in Chennai

Meet Idli Man, the man serving over 2000 varieties of idli in Chennai

M Eniyavan is a famous name in the streets of Chennai. Once an auto driver, Eniyavan is now fondly known as the Idli Man or Idli Eniyavan, and runs his own restaurant in the city called Mallippo Idli. The man shot to fame for his experiments with the traditional south Indian dish idli. And he can make more than 2000 varieties of idli, not kidding! Today, his restaurant in Chennai is one of the prominent tourist attractions and draws food lovers from all over the country.

His story

Eniyavan met his passion in a very unlikely place. A class 8 dropout and an auto driver, he was once hailed by a woman carrying a heavy utensil full of idli batter. The woman used to sell idlis to local eateries on a daily basis. She became a regular passenger of his auto and Eniyavan got inspired by her. He stopped driving auto and set up his own shop and started selling idlis, but with a twist.

Varieties of idli

Mallipoo Idli is not the place where you would find the regular idlis or rice cakes. People come here to relish 2000 varieties of idlis! This is the place where you order pizza idli (kids’ favourite), idli with chocolate, corn and orange. There’s also Mickey Mouse-shaped and Kung Fu Panda idlis on the menu. He also serves idli made using seasonal fruits and vegetables. People usually love his tender coconut idli, and chutney stuffed idli.

There’s an interesting story behind the invention of pizza idli. Once, when his kids demanded pizza, he steamed a plate of idli batter and garnished it with some leftover vegetables, thus inventing pizza idli!

But the Idli Man was not satisfied with these accomplishments, so he tried his luck at the Guinness Book of World Records by preparing a huge 124.8 kg idli!

M Eniyavan is definitely a perfect example of the adage, Where there’s will, there’s a way. So, the next time you are in Chennai, do not forget to visit this genius.

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