Of Flavours & Tastes…
It’s been a hectic week for me.I couldn’t visit this space or update with something in the draft.Now that I don’t want to keep this idleness on,decided to post a beautiful breakfast / dinner from Kerala ! Appam or Vellayappam as we call it,this splendid white beauties are said to have come with Portugeese during the colonial period.The areas where they ruled,like Ceylon or Goa,all have the hoppers as a main dish in their daily cuisine.The super awesome Appam and stew or ishtoo as we might have translated to Malayalam, is a perfect breakfast to kickstart the day..And if you are into assembling a dinner,just prepare few of these and see how the guests are going to be pleased with you !
Before heading on to the recipe,I would love to share some tips while making appam.A perfect appam is both an art and technique.You may master in appam making if you are careful in the followings:
a)The variety of rice you choose-We use short grain rice/pachari to make appam.Usually the shortgrains with a thick round texture will give best result.
b)The yeast you add-While preparing the batter we are going to use yeast.There are many varieties of yeast available in the market.Depending on the quality,the time taken to rise will be different.
c)The fermentation process-The batter we keep usually overnight should be double or more in the morning.Most people fail in this step .You need to place the batter at a place where constant light heat is available.Especially in a cold climate.The best options are to keep in an oven with lights on.If you don’t have a light option in the oven,you may keep the door ajar so that the light will be on.Like this you can keep it over the fridge.Another idea is to keep it over a bowl of boiled water.
d)Don’t overbeat the batter while making appam.With more air,the texture of appam may change.
e)The heat while making appam-The appachatty or the utensil we use to make appam, should be placed in a medium law heat.Any change in the heat can completely spoil the shape of appam while rotating.
Reading all these,don’t you think it’s a complex thing to make ? Not at all.These are just tips.Most of which you learn after several sessions of appam making.Then why I take the trouble to write all these ? Just because it’s a worth task..Recipe follows :
2 cups short grain rice, washed,soaked in water for 5 hours
1 cup freshly grated coconut
Handful of cooked rice (preferably of parboiled rice/puzhungalari choru)
1/2 tsp yeast
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp more sugar to be added in the morning
Now shift the batter to a bowl you are going to ferment.It should be a bigger one since the batter need space to rise.Add the yeast mixture and mix well.
Keep it closed in a warm place of your choice.It may take 8-12 hours to rise.Now in the morning this would be doubled like this.
Add the bicarbonate of soda,salt and 1 tsp sugar to this batter and mix well.Keep it closed again and place it in the same warm place.I usually use this time to make my stew.The batter will again rise like this after half to one hour.
Now place the appam maker in law medium heat.Spray some oil and pour spoonful of batter.Rotate the pan fast and close with the lid.
Wait for 1-2 minutes and you may take out appam.Serve hot with Stew /Egg curry/meat curry of your choice !