Wednesday, September 17, 2008

En Samayal Arai Ragasiyangal

In this section, I would like to share some kitchen magics, make-ups and make-overs of food that I have learnt through so many sources in the course of my cooking through these years.

Let me start off with the favorite south indian dish, Idly/dosa. My grandma makes big, soft idlies. She grinds the batter in the Attu Kal(grinding machine). The Idlies made from hand ground batter cooked in the big idly pots with cloth spread on the idly plates tastes like heaven.

After marraige, I became a fan of the Idlies made by my MIL too. They fit the phrase, Malligai Poo Idly (white and soft as jasmine flower), toooooooo soft and spongy they are. She uses the grinder though. In these seven years, I have not tried grinding the batter... Athu Avanga Area...
She maintains the proportion always.
10 cups of Idly rice (IR 20)
2 cups of Urad dhal
1 tsp of Fenugreek
Wash the rice and dhal until the water is clear and soak the rice and dhal with fenugreek separately for about 3 to 4 hrs, grind the rice first to a fine rava consistency, then grind the urad dhal to a smooth paste. Do not add too much water while grinding. Also, do not put your hands too frequently while grinding. Mix gently adding salt per taste and transfer to small containers filling 3/4th of the container leaving spac efor the batter to ferment and refrigerate immediately.

Keep the batter to ferment for 8 hrs before using it.
Idly/Dosa Tips
  • For soft Dosas, add some boiled rice (sadham) while grinding.
  • Do not beat idly batter too much, the air of which has been incorporated during fermentation will escape and idly will become harder.
  • If you add half a teaspoon of fenugreek seeds to the urad dhal and rice mixture while soaking, dosas will be more crisp and brown.
  • To prevent leftover idly/dosa batter from becoming too sour place a beetal leaf on top. Otherwise, take a basin and fill with water to cover half the size of the vessel containing the batter and leave the vessel in until you use it.
  • Have leftover idlies, we normally make Idly Upma

Idly Upma

Left over Idlies (crumble with your hands)

For Tempering

1/4 tsp of mustard

1/2 tsp urad dhal

1 tsp of channa dhal

red chillies as per the no of idlies (2 for 4 idlies)

1 pinch hing

curry leaves few

Sesame oil.

Heat oil in a kadai, add the ingredients for tempering in order, add the leftover idly crumbs and stir for 2 to 3 mins until it is heated. Serve hot with Idly milagai podi sprinkled on top or with sugar. Hot evening snack is ready.

Wait until my next post for a sweet dish out of left over idlies.

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