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Homemade Seasoned Ragi Sevai (Finger Millet Noodles)

Posted May 14 2009 5:01pm
Like I mentioned before, ragi is one grain I never did have this in my diet as a child. (at least as far as I can remember). I suppose the varied preferences of our family made it easier to follow a path of cooking food that every one of us liked rather than take a bold step of experimentation.

Ragi mudde, or ragi balls, that South Indians have with rasam seemed particularly repulsive and tasteless when I was introduced to the fare by my in-laws. "You're not supposed to chew it, just swallow the pieces whole," they'd advise me. I'm the sort that needs to chew and taste my food, otherwise it's no food at all. :-D

I soon discovered a lot of good from this wonder millet. I've introduced it in our diet in the form ofdosas. Sprouted forms are said to be even more nutritious. I needed some variety, however. I had bought a sevai maker a while ago because I like to make sevai from scratch rather than getting prepackaged ones from the supermarket. In the case of rice sevai, I can moderate the amount of white rice added and replace major portion of it with brown or parboiled rice, making it more diabetic friendly.

For a while I had been looking around for an easy recipe and I came across a simple one for ragi sevai. It is not the usual complicated process of stirring the flour paste on the stove and then making the sevai and then steaming it all over again -- this recipe put me off of ragi sevai.

The recipe I liked went something like this:

The easier way round of making ragi sevai involves mixing up a thick batter using ragi flour and water with requisite salt, pouring the batter into the idli stand and steaming the ragi idlis. Once done, directly place the hot idlis one by one in the sevai-making press and press out the sevai.

The credit for this method goes to Sharadha, a fellow health food blogger; clickherefor her detailed description with photos. I had some misgivings about it at first, but it really worked for me. I could not use the sprouted flour, but since I use sprouted ragi in dosas anyway, I just used plain flour in this case. I also do not find the necessity of sprinkling oil on the sevai to separate the strands as they come out perfectly in my case.

Though the sevai tastes good enough as it is, I need something extra to add to its flavor. To season the sevai, I chop up the following:
  • two large onions (I always need a higher quantity of this for ragi to improve the taste)
  • an inch of ginger

I heat about a spoon of oil in a pan and splatter half a spoon of mustard seeds. Once done I add half a spoon of urad dal and fry it till it is golden brown. I then add two broken red chillis and a few curry leaves and a pinch of asafoetida (hing) powder. Ginger goes in next, then the chopped onions, with frequent stirring. The onions need to fry well, till they turn a translucent pink. To this I then add the sevai, stirring it up with two forks in order that the onions and seasoning get distributed throughout. I turn off the stove and garnish well with grated coconut.

If the salt in the sevai seems insufficient, some salt and chilli powder too may be added when preparing the seasoning.

I tend to make this for our supper too as I now avoid any rice preparations at night. It is wonderful as it is, but a side of coriander chutney using green chillies might be a great accompaniment.

Thanks, Sharadha, for this easy-to-prepare and tasty recipe!

This is my entry for theMBP: Easy Breezy Breakfasthosted for the month of January by EC of Simple Indian Food.Monthly Blog Patrolwas started by Coffee of The Spice Cafe to honor all food bloggers for the ever-widening list of recipes one has learnt.
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