Thursday, July 30, 2020

Vattayappam - Kerala Style Steamed Rice Cakes

Vattayappam is a very soft and spongy steamed rice cake popular in Kerala. 

Vattam in Malayalam means "round" and appam translates to pancake. Hence the name 'Vattayappam' for these round spongy cakes.  This traditional snack is a oil free, vegan and gluten-free. It is made by grinding rice and coconut. The batter is fermented and then steamed. Sugar is added for sweetness and cardamom for flavoring. This sweet cake is usually eaten as an evening snack or dessert. It can be made savory by omitting the sugar and can be served with curries. 


Ingredients:
  1. Raw rice/Sona Masoori - 1 cup
  2. Coconut grated - 1 cup
  3. Cooked rice - 1/4 cup
  4. Instant Yeast - 1/2 teaspoon
  5. Sugar - 3 tablespoon
  6. Cardamom - 3
  7. Salt - 1/2 teaspoon
  8. Oil for greasing
Method:
  1. Wash and soak raw rice for at least 4 hours. 
  2. Grind soaked rice, grated coconut, cooked rice and cardamom into smooth paste. The batter should be thick as that of idli batter.
  3. Add salt, sugar and instant yeast to the batter and mix well until sugar dissolves.
  4. Set aside the batter for fermentation for around 3 hours.
  5. Use a round vessel for steaming the vattayappam. Grease it well with oil (preferably coconut oil).
  6. Pour the batter in a round vessel and place it in a steamer. Steam for 20 mins or until a toothpick inserted at the center comes out clean.
  7. Cool for 15 mins and then invert the vessel to remove the vattayappam.
  8. Cut into wedges and serve.
Note: 
  1. The round vessel to steam can be either a deep steel plate, wide mouthed steel tiffin box, round pyrex box or even a cake pan. 
  2. You can replace cooked rice with thin poha. Soak the thin poha for around 5 minutes before grinding.
  3. With 3 tablespoon of sugar, this snack is mildly sweet. You can adjust the sweetness according to your preference. 
  4. For the sweet version, you can sprinkle cashews and raisins to the batter before steaming. 




I made this recipe as part of the "Sshhh Cooking Secretly" event. This is an event started by Priya of Priya's Versatile Recipe and now being taken forward by Mayuri of Mayuri's Jikoni.  At the beginning of the month a theme is chosen by one of the participants and all the participants are grouped in pairs. The participants will exchange 2 secret ingredients with their partners who are suppose to prepare a dish that matches the theme of that month. 


I got the opportunity to choose this month's theme and I selected "Steamed Foods". 

My partner for this month is Archana Gunjikar Potdar and she shared me coconut and cardamom as my secret ingredients and I gave her flour and water as her ingredients. She made "Kankiche Dive". Do visit her blog "The Mad Scientist's Kitchen" to check out an amazing collection of recipes. She also has a wide variety of exotic desserts like Easy Mocha Semifreddo, Popcorn Rocky Road Dessert, Layered Angel Cake the British Version to name a few. 

Purslane with Dal

Purlane Dal

Purslane is a a weed that grows in many parts of the world. It is also a highly nutritious leafy vegetable with lot of health benefits.

Purslane is much higher in omega-3 fatty acids than other greens. It contains two types of omega-3 fatty acids, ALA and EPA. ALA is found in many plants, but EPA is found mostly in animal products (like fatty fish) and algae. Purslane contains high amounts of ALA, and also trace amounts of EPA.

It is loaded with antioxidants and beneficial plant compounds, which may have various health benefits.. It is also great source of minerals like potassium, magnesium and calcium. Source: healthline.


Ingredients:
  1. Purlane leaves - 1 bunch
  2. Toor dal - 1/2 cup
  3. Tomato - 1 medium
  4. Onion - 1 medium
  5. Garlic cloves - 4
  6. Green chilies - 2
  7. Red chili powder - 1/2 teaspoon or as per your spice level
  8. Turmeric powder - 1/2 teaspoon
  9. Sambar powder - 1 teaspoon (optional)
  10. Mustard seeds - 1 teaspoon
  11. Dried red chilies - 2-3
  12. Curry leaves - 1 sprig
  13. Salt to taste
  14. Oil - 1 tablespoon
Method:
  1. Chop off the roots of purlane. Wash and cut them finely.
  2. Pressure cook toor dal along with turmeric powder, chopped onion, tomatoes and green chilies.
  3. Once the dal is cooked, mash it and add the chopped purlane leaves. Bring it to boil and add salt to taste and sambar powder. 
  4. Heat oil in a kadai and splutter mustard seeds. Add dried red chilies and curry leaves and transfer to dal.
Serve with rice.