Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Whenever mom made this in my college days, she would pack me 3 boxes for lunch instead of one. One for me, one for a friend and another large one for the remaining friends and almost for everyone in the class! People would fight to get their share of this delicious spicy food. I still love it when mom makes it, though I too make it fairly good. Here’s the recipe...

Preparation time : 20 min
Cooking time : 15 min
Serves : 5-6

Avalakki/Poha/Beaten rice - 4 cups (Use thick variety)
Tamarind - 1-2 lemon sized ball, soaked in ½ cup water
Rasam powder - 2 tsp, vary as per your taste
Jaggery - 1 small lemon sized ball
Salt - 1 tsp, vary as per taste
Desiccated coconut, grated - ½ cup

For powdering:
Fenugreek / methi seeds - ½ tsp
Cumin seeds - 2 tsp
Sesame seeds - 2 tsp

For tempering:
Cooking oil - 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Groundnut seeds - 1 tbsp
Chana dal - 1 tsp
Urad dal - 1 tsp
White Sesame seeds - 2 tsp
Curry leaves - 2-3 sprigs
Red chilies - 1
Turmeric - 1 pinch

• Dry roast all the ingredients under ‘For Powdering’ and when slightly cool, grind to powder and keep aside
• Take the avalakki in a mixie jar and pulse it a couple of times, just enough to break it into very coarse powder. Do not over do this
• In a wide bowl, mix tamarind pulp, jaggery, salt and rasam powder and add a little water, enough to dissolve the ingredients
• Now wash the broken avalakki, by pouring water into it in a big vessel and immediately drain off the water, ensuring that it is not soaked
• Add this drained avalakki into the tamarind water prepared above and leave it undisturbed for 2 minutes till the avalakki absorbs the liquid.
• Mix it a couple of times to ensure uniform soaking and absorbing of the taste
• If the avalakki seems too hard even after soaking, sprinkle a little more water and let it absorb
• Once done, in a big skillet, heat oil and make the tempering:
o Add mustard seeds and allow to splutter
o Turn the heat low, add groundnut seeds, and stir
o After the groundnuts are half-done, channa dal and urad dal
o Add curry leaves and red chili pieces and stir for half a minute till all the ingredients are properly roasted.
o At the end add sesame seeds and turmeric powder
• Now mix in the soaked avalakki into the tempering, add the spice powder prepared above, grated coconut and stir well to combine
• Check and adjust the taste if necessary
• Heat it while stirring just till it is hot and mixed well
• Serve warm or cold

Tips n Tricks:
• Do not over powder the avalakki.
• Each type of avalakki needs a different amount of water, so use a little initially and increase later if necessary

• You need not heat it after adding tempering. That gives a slightly different taste. I like it if heated.