Puttu/ Pittu recipes evoke a tradition of homely breakfast and a tea-shop favourite for many Keralites. Similar dishes abound in the geographical trail of colonization, commerce, conquests, migrations, and trade.
In our nook we call these Nool Puttu = String puttu; Idiyappam is a common name, Sevai the most popular Tamil version; Shevayi in the Karnataka region. Srilankan's call it Indi Appa. The basic ingredient is rice flour, salt and water; the differences come in the variety of rice, the way dough is made, extruded and its consistency.
Instant Versions: There are several 'instant' versions: dried string hopper parcels, which need the minimal effort: soak in hot boiling water, drain, season/temper and serve. Searching for different variations brought about this jaw dropping innovation, the SevaiMagik. How did I miss this one? It seems to be in the market since 2007; am really curious to know how well it works!
Nool Puttu is served with fresh grated coconut, tiny honey-sweet bananas and pappadums.
Milk and sugar combinations are a childhood staple.
Our favourite combination for Puttu is pappadums and more grated coconut!
[These could be shamelessly indulged in only at our grandparents home with a bounty of fresh coconuts].
Roasted rice nool puttu
One can also use parboiled, red rice powder which can also be lightly roasted.
2 Cups of boiling water or less
[ the amount would depend on the quality of the rice powder]
1 tsp of ghee/ coconut oil
Sevanazhi or a Press, using the tiny mutli-holed disc.
Steaming plates or Idli moulds.
Grease the Idli moulds or the Idiyappam moulds.
Spread 1/4 tsp or more of fresh grated coconut on the mould.
Bring the water to a boil, season with salt and ghee-clarified butter.
Add water to the rice flour and mix well with a firm ladle.
The dough should have a soft consistency.
Once the dough is slightly cool, enough to handle , knead the dough and press it through the sevanazhi onto the greased idli moulds.
Steam for about 10 minutes.
Let cool for a few minutes, take off the moulds and serve.
This recipe goes to the Steamy Kitchen Event!