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Idiyappam Recipe - Soft, Buttery

>> June 24, 2012




Buttery, Soft Idiyappam (String Hoppers) or Noolputtu

Yesterday I was writing an article for an epicure magazine. I actually wrote these lines - the search for the perfect recipe or ingredient is never ending. This idiyappam recipe is something like that. After years of research i learnt that the amount of rice flour should be equal to the amount of water, i.e. when measuring 1 cup flour use 1 cup salted water. However this took a twist when using certain brands of rice flour. The flour wouldn't absorb the 1 cup water or sometimes the 1 cup water wouldn't be adequate to collect all the flour into a dough and then I will end up in a soup (like the kolaveri soup story, especially if it is in the morning :-] ). Then I have to think about some other recipe to use up the watery or dry dough. Later i learnt that you should add water as the flour absorbs the liquid and stir the mix then and there. Then comes the butter story. When I visited my aunt i saw her pouring a lot of coconut oil into the idiyappam dough. She said it gives a soft texture. It was true. When we had the idiyappam later, it was just melting in the mouth. However, i am not a fan of coconut oil so i first used ghee and then i thought a saturated fat would be more apt. So I tried using butter and the string hoppers were as good as the aunt made ones even with just 1/2 tsp butter.

ingredients for the string hoppers

rice flour - 2 cups
water - 2 1/4 cups*
butter - 1/2 tsp
salt - 1/3 tsp or as needed
grated coconut - 1/4 of a coconut (optional)

* Use the same cup to measure rice flour and water. The 1/4 cup water is only a reserve. Use it only if required. Because once you mix the dough and then feel that it is too dry and try to add water, the idiyappam will not turn out good.That is why the reserve.

method

Place the rice flour in a wide bowl. Boil the water with salt. Once boiled, pour it into the flour continuously but slowly in a circular motion. This will give time for the flour to absorb and you will have time to stir the flour (use a spoon) and water mix. When you have used up almost 2 cup water check whether the flour has absorbed all the water or if the dough requires more water. Add the remaining water and mix well if need be. At this point the dough will be hot. Place the butter at the back of the spoon and roughly spread it on the dough and give a quick mix. Let the dough cool. When it is cold enough for your hands to handle knead it into a smooth dough. 

Prepare idli moulds by placing a teaspoon of grated coconut. Press the dough over the coconut to form idiyappams. Steam it for 10 - 15 minutes. If you have banana leaf, cut it into small squares and press the idiyappams over it and steam it. The banana leaves give an aromatic floavour to idiyappam.

Serve the idiyappam warm with vegetable stew or beef stew or masala curry (Kadala or black garbanzo bean) or with vegetable kurma or mughlai chicken. There are actually unlimited combinations for string hoppers.

Enjoy!!!

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Rajma & Carrot Makhani

>> June 12, 2012




This recipe is inspired by the Rajma Masala prepared by Sona. Since the makhani gravy is much liked by all at home i prepared the rajma makhani  with the carrots to give a mild sweetness.

Rajma - 1 cup (soaked overnight or for 6 to 8 hours)
Carrot - 2

Oil - 1 1/2 to 2 tbsp
Onion - 1 large
Garlic -6 cloves
Ginger - 1/2 inch piece, peeled & julienned
Tomato - 2 large

Powders
Turmeric - 1/3 tsp
Chilly powder - 1 tsp
Coriander powder - 1 tsp
Cumin powder - 1/2 tsp
Garam Masala - 1/3 tsp

Coriander - 1 sprig, chopped
Butter - 1 tsp
Milk or cream - 2- 3 tbsp

method

Pressure cook the rajma for 8 whistle or till turns slightly mushy.

Heat oil in a pan. Mince the onion and garlic and add to oil. Saute for a while. Add the julienned ginger.Stir for few seconds and add all the powders. Grind the tomatoes to a fine paste and add it to the masala. Add the chopped carrots and cooked rajma. Add salt. Bring it to boil and then simmer for 15 to 30 minutes. Check taste. Add milk, sprinkle the coriander leaves and add the butter. Stir well. Turn off heat. Serve with naan, roti or rice.

the recipe goes to Blog Hop by Radhika

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