Thursday, June 13, 2013

Ammini kozhukkattai - savoury steamed rice flour dumplings

Kozhukkattai is a traditional stuffed dumpling that is made during Ganesh Chaturthi. Grated coconut and jaggery, cooked over low heat with a hint of cardamom thrown in, is stuffed into an outer layer of rice flour dough that is shaped by deft hands into a dumpling. This is then steamed, offered to Ganesha whose favourite sweet it is, and then relished by the family.
Ammini kozhukkattai - the bite sized, savoury version - is almost always made on days when the regular sweet kozhukkattai is made. It probably is a dish that was invented when some resourceful woman decided that she would put the left over rice flour dough to good use.
Having grown up in a household where kozhukattais were(and still are) made at the drop of a hat and not just for Ganesh Chathurti, it is little wonder that this bite sized, savoury version is something that I have fond memories of eating.
The only time when dough is made exclusively for ammini kozhukattai, and not as an after thought to the sweeter modak cousins, is during Navaratri when this is made as Neivedyam/prasadam - an offering to the deity.
What you need:
Rice flour - 1 cup
Water - 2 cups
Salt - to taste
Oil - 2 tsp (preferably coconut oil)
Fresh grated coconut - 2 tbsp
Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
Urad dal - 1 tsp
Chana dal - 1 tsp
Broken red chillies - 2
Curry leaves - 2 sprigs

Mix rice flour with one cup of water to a thick, smooth paste. Heat the remaining cup of water along with salt in a heavy bottomed, large pan. When the water starts to boil, reduce the heat and add the rice flour paste. Cook, stirring continuously, until the mixture forms a thick ball. Switch off heat. When the dough is warm to the touch, remove it on to a plate, add a teaspoon of coconut oil and knead well. Apply oil on your hands, pinch out small bits of the dough and roll into marble sized balls. Steam these balls in an idli plate/steamer for 8-10 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes after switching off the heat.
In a pan, heat a teaspoon of coconut oil. Add urad dal, chana dal and broken red chillies. When the dals start to brown, add the mustard seeds. When the seeds pop, add in the curry leaves and the grated coconut. Saute on low heat till the coconut turns reddish brown. Add the cooked kozhukkattais to this. Mix well and heat for 2-3 minutes.
Enjoy as an evening snack or a light tiffin.

Variations : Omit grated coconut. Knead in some red chilli powder to the dough and then proceed with the recipe.
For the recipe of the sweet version of kozhukattai, click here.
This is my second recipe for Blogging Marathon #29, showcasing Kerala Iyer snacks.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM#29


Priya Suresh said...

My all time favourite, i can finish that droolworthy cute snow balls like ammini kozhukattais rite now.

MySpicyKitchen said...

Those dumplings are so cute and off course look delicious!

Pavani said...

Those ammini kozhukattai look super cute.

sra said...

This fascinates me no end - I've never tried my hand at it but the shape and the smoothness are ... I even saw them being sold once and bought them!

Srivalli said...

How very nice to know your family makes this on other days as well. I have always have to wait for Ganesh Churthi for this treat during childhood and it continues..:)..and yes this savory dish is also made that day as well...bases on what you say, guess I should remember to make it during Navaratri this time..that bowl tempts for sure..

Priya Srinivasan - I Camp in My Kitchen said...

Looks super yum, I too make these often n I add some grated carror also.

Archana said...

I have read abt this dish so many times and I am yet to make it. I do not know what holds me back.

Harini R said...

Aww..they look super cute!

Chef Mireille said...

learning more about Kerala cuisine...looks yum