Saturday, 29 October 2016

Kara Sev and Pearl Millet

How about some savoury snack today to go onto the Diwali dishes.

If you have noticed, off late I have been trying out so many of the dishes with millets. And trust me, there are many more to come. Like I mentioned in the earlier post, they carry lot of benefits with them and one of the best alternative for gluten free grains.

Today I have tried the regular Kara Sev , a popular South Indian savoury snack with Pearl Millet aka Bajra in the North of India and various names in the South. This fried snack can be paired with your regular curd rice as well to give it that extra crunch.
The only change I did was to use a chakli/murukku maker with multiple holes plate. This way there is a reduction in the time consumed to make these and of course the oil as well. The traditional way of making kara sev is to pass the dough through a ladle that has perforated holes. I am no good when it comes to traditional way of handling too many things at the same time while on the stove.

Kara Sev brings back a lot of memories of childhood and college days. It was the most regular snack found in our hostel rooms and who can forget munching them away while preparing for the exams at 1-2 AM.

Earlier I had made some pakkodas with Bajra and that recipe found gave me the inspiration to try sev with Bajra.

Bajra/ Peral Millet Flour                                       3/4 cup
Gram Flour(Besan)                                               1/3 cup
Rice Powder                                                         1/4 cup
Pepper Powder                                                      3 tsps(adjust according to taste)
Hing                                                                      1/4 tsp
Melted Ghee/Butter                                               3 tsps
Salt                                                                        1 tsp(adjust according to taste )
Water to knead                                                      As required
Oil                                                                         For deep frying.

Equipment Needed
Ladle with holes
Murukku/Chakli maker

My way of Making
1. Sift all the flours together into a bowl.
2. Add melted ghee into the flour and give it a stir.
3. Add the Pepper powder, hing and salt.
4. Add water step by step and combine the flour into a soft dough.
5. Leave it covered for about 10-15 minutes.
6. Heat oil in a wok.
7. Use the plate that has 5 holes in the chakli/murukku maker. Pass the dough through the chakli /murukku maker into the oil. Do not overcrowd the wok. Turn the flame to medium.
8. As you drop the dough into the oil, one can hear the oil sizzle. This indicates the sev to be cooking.
9. Once the sound stops, its time to remove the sev using a ladle with holes and drain them into paper towels.
10. Serve them as snack or munch them right away.

1. Temperature of the oil is important. Do not let the oil turn smoky hot.
2. If the dough is breaking add some more water and knead it again.
3. If using ladle method, make sure to keep a considerable distance from the wok so as to not burn yourself from the heat.
4. Once the sev cools down, store them in air tight containers for about 1 month.
5. One can use garlic as well for flavouring the sev. Grind 4-5 cloves in a mixer and make it to a paste and add it to the flour mixture. 

Wednesday, 26 October 2016

Unniappam with Sorghum/Jowar (Instant version)

Another sweet for the upcoming Diwali. Yes its raining recipes here.

We Keralites usually stick to Unniappam/ Neyappam for Diwali. One can never get enough of these appams for 4 clock snacks or as temple prasad. However this time, I wanted to try adding some other flour to the mix. Call it experimentation or innovation. I  scanned through my shelves and decided to use the Jowar flour otherwise called Sorghum that is very less used. And trust me, the appams had no difference in taste or texture. The spouse loves appams and he could not stop with one or two.

The other change that I did was to use Palm Jaggery syrup instead of Jaggery syrup.

Rice Powder                                                1 cup
Sorghum/Jowar Flour                                  1/2 cup
Ripe Banana                                                1 medium size
Palm Jaggery syrup (single string)               2.5 cups
Coconut Bits, fried in ghee                          5-7 tbsps
Cardamom Powder                                      2 tsps
Sesame seeds roasted                                   2 tsps
Cooking soda                                               1 tsp
Coconut Oil/Ghee                                        For frying

Water (if required)

Equipment needed
Appe pan

My way of making
1. Smash banana well enough to make a paste. If required use the mixer.
2. To this add jaggery syrup and mix well with the banana mash.
3. In a separate bowl mix the rice powder and sorghum/jowar flour.
4. To this add the jaggery - banana mix.
5. Stir well and combine to form a uniform batter.
6. To this add cooking soda and mix well.
7. Keep aside for 30 minutes or 1 hour. The batter should be fermented meanwhile.
8. If the batter is very thick, add water little by little
9. Just before frying add the fried coconut pieces and sesame seeds to the batter. Add the cardamom powder as well. Give it a stir.
10. When the appe pan is hot enough, add some oil in each mould and wait till it gets hot. Do not let it get smoky hot.
11. To this add 1 tsp of batter in each mould. Turn around when one side is almost done.
12. Wait till the other side is cooked.
13. Drain into tissue paper.
14. Serve warm.

1. The traditional method is to let the batter ferment without the use of cooking soda. That would take some 4-5 hours.
2. You could use jaggery syrup as well instead of palm jaggery.
3. Add water if required only. The batter should have a consistency like idli batter.


Monday, 24 October 2016

Mixed Millets Kheer (quick version)

Happy Diwali Folks!

Did you miss my posts? I found some breathing space today and decided why not update with a dessert recipe with Diwali coming up.I may be MIA/irregular here for some more time. But there is quite lot happening on the FBpage and Instagram. Have you checked them out yet?

That time of the year to relish on sweets and savouries apart from crackers and diya's. Oh! by the way , I do hope you would be having a happy , safe and green Diwali.

Over the past few months we have been including Millets into our diet. Benefits of Millets are plenty. All the more better when they are organic as well.

Few days back I tried a quick version of kheer with Millets. If I may say so the desert was an instant hit with everyone at home specially the kids. It is very satisfying when you have kids come and say “Amma, this was yummy!”.

Go ahead and try this dish out for Diwali this year and the following years. Yes yes you can thank me later :).

Mixed Millets (Kodo and Proso) 1 cup
Water               2 cups
Milk 3 cups
Sugar 1/4 to 1/2 cup
Saffron strands 2 tsp
Ghee 1 tbsp
Cardamom Powder 2 tbsps
Cashew nuts and Dry Grapes 1 tbsp

My way of making
1. Clean and wash the millets. Cook the millets in 2 cups of water or adjust as required until fluffy. This should take about 10-15 minutes. If using cooker, wait up to 4-5 whistles.
2. Boil the milk and to this add few strands of saffron for the flavour to be absorbed
3. Turn the burner to sim and add the cooked millets to the milk.
4. Keep stirring intermediate till the mix turns creamy and to avoid formation of lumps.
5. To this add sugar. Stir the mix to help dissolve the sugar.
6. Add cardamom powder and stir well.
7. Meanwhile heat a teaspoon of ghee from the mentioned quantity and fry the cashewnuts and grapes separately.
8. Garnish the kheer with grapes and cashew nuts and remaining saffron strands.
9. Pour the remaining ghee over the kheer.
10. Serve warm.

1.  Adjust sweetness as per one’s taste. If you want to avoid sugar, you can also try jaggery syrup but the taste would not remain same.
2. One can cook millets along with combination of milk and water for authentic taste. Just that this could take a bit longer for the millets to get cooked.