In olden days, puttu used to be made in bamboo steamer ( puttukutti ). Later it underwent several modification to present day puttu maker which can be attached to pressure cooker. This dish is easy to prepare, easy to digest and can be made with minimum ingredients - especially the combo with banana ( kele ) and sugar. One can adjust the quantity of coconut. Also a good combination with Banana & Sugar.
You will need
Makes - 2 puttu
Raw rice powder – 1 cup ( 225 g ) ( Roasted - just roast it while stirring on a medium heat until it gives out the characteristic roasted smell – Do not wait until it turns brown)
Salt – ½ teaspoon
Grated coconut – ½ cup
Water for mixing – ¼ cup
Take a big flat bowl. Add raw rice powder ( roasted ) and salt. Sprinkle water and mix it with fingers.
Mix it slowly so that it won't roll into small balls. Break any rice flour balls which forms during mixing. Spray water little by little. ( Please note that to mix a cup of rice flour, one may not need more than 1/5 th of a cup of water).
After mixing rice flour; the powder should be just wet or moistened rice powder (un- like chapatti dough or batter for dosa).
Rice powder should not be dry but wet enough for steaming . Keep aside for half an hour. In Kerala we used to say ‘’ podinanakkal for puttu”.
Fill this rice powder in Puttu maker / gadget for making puttu. This puttu maker / gadget will essentially have a sieve at the bottom.
Place a 5 mm layer of grated coconut at the bottom. The filling should be in such a way that a 5 mm thick layer of grated coconut should be layered every 3 – 4 inch thickness of rice flour; while filling.
Top it with liberal layer of coconut scraping. Steam it on the pressure cooker on medium flame for 5-8 minutes till a consistent stream of steam emanates from the top of puttu maker. Push the puttu from the puttu maker with the help of a thin rod.
Important while filling: Do not apply pressure on the filling. The filling should be packed loosely inside the puttumaker. Else the puttu will come out like a missile (there will be a pressure built up beneath it and steam will not pass thru it) and will end up as a big disaster.
Tips : For those who really want to avoid coconut can go ahead without using coconut. But in return you will get only half the original taste. There is an idiom in Malayalam “ PuttinuPeeraVachathuPoele” – Meaning an indispensable decoration.
Frankly blogging I’m always buy raw rice powder.
Kadala (Chick Pea) Curry
150 g black Chana ( Kadala or Chick pea ) 2 cups water 1 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
For the coconut paste / masala
1 cup ( 200 g )grated coconut 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder 3/4 teaspoon red chilli powder 1/2 teaspoon pepper powder 2 tablespoon water
Reserve 1/4 cup for water for diluting coconut paste )
Prepare a smooth paste from the above ingredients in a mixer and keep aside.
Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds. When they sputter and cumin seeds, sliced onion and curry leaves. Fry on a low heat for 7 - 8 minutes or till golden brown and a nice aroma of small onions.
Wash and soak black Chana ( Kadala ) in 2 cups water for 8 -10 hours or overnight. Pressure cook with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder for 25 - 30 minutes ( reduce heat to medium after 3rd whistle and cook for 25 minutes. Allow the cooker to cool naturally. Reserve half cup channa stock for later use ).
Boil cooked channa and 1/2 cup channa stock for 8 minutes on a low heat.
Add ground coconut masala to the pressure cooked channa. Mix well and dilute with 1/4 cup water. The consistency of this preparation should be medium thick; not too watery. Cover with a lid and cook on a low heat for 10 - 12 minutes. Stir occasionally. Once done, add seasoning to the curry; mix well . Serve with Puttu .