Nivagrya: Ganesh Chaturthi Special from Maharashtra

Today, I present Nivagrya, a wonderful use of the leftover rice flour dough used to make Modak on Ganesh Chaturthi.

Nivagrya is a steamed rice flour disc
Nivagrya

Much as I try to make the exact amount of rice flour dough that is needed for Ukadiche Modak, I always have some leftover. In fact, when we cook for festivals there is quite a bit of random odds and ends that are leftover. In most Indian homes, wastage of food is considered a sin and so there are a multitude of side-dishes that have been devised to use up leftovers.

In South India, the left over rice flour dough from the outer covering of Modaks is used to make Ammini Kozhukottai | Undrallu Guggillu, Paala Undrallu, and Pappulo Undrallu.

In Maharashtra, they use it to make Nivagrya, small spicy steamed pancakes or patties. All you need to do is add some cumin, coarse green chilli paste, and salt to the dough, mix well, make small thick pancakes and steam them.

Savour them hot off the steamer with some cold yogurt or just drizzle them with some groundnut oil. Let me assure you that once you try Nivagrya, you will just find reasons to make them. It is also very easy to make so you can have a delicious snack ready in under 30 minutes.

Actually, the dough in itself is so tasty that I tend to snack on it while making the discs. In fact, this dough is very similar to the batter I make for Biyyam Pindi Vadiyalu (Sun-dried rice flour fritter from Andhra Pradesh)!

Do you have extra Puran from making Puran Poli, Bobbatu, or Obbattu? Make Holige Saaru or Poornam Boorelu.

If you like this recipe, I can guarantee that you will love the Gujarati Rice Khichu, which is identical to the dough we made in this recipe.

Nivagrya | Ganesh Chaturthi Recipe
Nivagrya | Ganesh Chaturthi Recipe

How to Make Nivagrya

Nivagrya | Maharashtrian Recipe for Ganesh Chaturthi
Print
Nivagrya | Ganesh Chaturthi Special from Maharashtra
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
15 mins
Total Time
25 mins
 

Nivagrya is made with the leftover rice flour dough from making Modaks. Just add some cumin, green chilli paste, and salt to the dough; make small patties and steam them.

Course: Side, Snack
Cuisine: Indian, Maharashtra, Maharashtrian
Servings: 6 People
Author: Aruna
Ingredients
  • 2 Cups Rice Flour
  • 2.5 Cups Water
  • 1 tbsp Oil
  • 4-6 Green Chillies
  • 2 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • Salt to Taste
Instructions
Making the Green Chilli - Cumin Paste
  1. Chop the green chillies to small pieces.

  2. Pound the green chilli to crush them.

  3. Add the cumin seeds and just pound once to release the flavours.

  4. Set aside.

Making the Dough
  1. Boil the water with the oil and salt.

  2. When the water starts to boil, turn down the flame.

  3. Add the rice flour and mix well.

  4. Cook over low flame while mixing continuously till the  mix comes together as a ball.

  5. Turn off the heat and take out into a plate.

  6. Let it cool a bit.

  7. Add the green chilli, cumin paste, and a bit more salt, if needed.

  8. Mix well.

Making the Nivagrya
  1. Add water to a steamer and let the steam build up.

  2. Using a few drops of oil, grease your palms.

  3. Divide the dough into 16 portions.

  4. Roll each portion into a ball.

  5. Pat each ball into a thick pancake/puri.

  6. Steam the Nivagrya for about 15 minutes.

  7. Turn off the steamer and wait for 5 minutes.

  8. Open the steamer and serve the Nivagrya hot with cold Dahi or just a drizzle of raw groundnut oil.


 

Nivagrya | Steamed Rice Flour Discs from Maharashtra
Nivagrya | Steamed Rice Flour Discs from Maharashtra

Green Papaya Avial Kootan | Paccha Papaya Avial

This recipe for Green Papaya Avial Kootan makes its way to the blog courtesy my colleague, Srividya K. Another colleague got Paccha Papaya Thoran for lunch and the conversation turned to the uses of unripe Papaya. Srividya mentioned making Avial with it and so here I come with the recipe.

Green Papaya Avial | Paccha Papaya Avial Kootan
Green Papaya Avial | Paccha Papaya Avial Kootan

I have already posted the recipe for the traditional Kerala Avial which is made with a mix of vegetables.

As I had never cooked with unripe Papaya ever before, I was a tad bit apprehensive about how this Paccha Papaya Avial would turn out. My fears, as it were, were unfounded and the Avial was just delicious with a mild flavour of the Papaya.

The success of this venture has also given me the impetus to try the Green Papaya Thoran soon. 🙂

How to Make Green Papaya Avial Kootan | Paccha Papaya Avial

Green Papaya Avial
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Green Papaya Avial Kootan | Paccha Papaya Avial
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
40 mins
 

This is the recipe for Green Papaya Avial (Paccha Papaya Avial Kootan), a variation of the traditiona Kerala Avial made with unripe Papaya.

Course: Main
Cuisine: Indian, Kerala
Servings: 4 People
Author: Aruna
Ingredients
  • 250 Gms Green Papaya
  • 1/3 Cup Grated Coconut
  • 2 Green Chillies
  • 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 tbsp Coconut Oil
  • 1/4 Cup Thick Curd
  • Curry Leaves, A Few
  • Salt to Taste
Instructions
Making the Coconut Paste
  1. Grind the grated coconut, green chillies and cumin with just a little water to form a coarse paste.

  2. Set aside.

Preparing the Papaya
  1. Peel the papaya and cut into 4 pieces.

  2. Discard any seeds.

  3. Scrape off the white layer on the inside.

  4. Cut into 1" cubes.

  5. Add the Papaya pieces about 1/2 litre water, salt and turmeric.

  6. Cook covered till the Papaya is transparent and just done. If you cut with a knife, it should be firm but go through the piece.

  7. If there is excess water, drain it out. 

Putting Together the Green Papaya Avial
  1. Turn the heat to low.

  2. Add the curry leaves, coconut paste and coconut oil to the cooked papaya pieces.

  3. Mix well.

  4. Add the dahi and salt (if required) to the Avial.

  5. Mix well.

  6. Add just a little water, if the Avial is dry.

  7. Cook over low flame for 3-5 minutes. 

  8. Turn off the heat and cover.

  9. Let the Green Papaya Avial Kootan rest for about 10 minutes.

  10. Serve with hot steamed rice!

Paccha Papaya Avial Kootan
Paccha Papaya Avial Kootan

Spicy, Crunchy Baked Chickpeas: A High-Protein Snack

Today, I present Spicy, Crunchy Baked Chickpeas. It is a wonderful and healthy snack that is in keeping with both the theme of the 105th Foodie Monday Blog Hop, Savoury Baked Dishes, as well as my decision to eat healthy. It also fit into my crazy work schedule.

Chilli Flavoured, Crunchy Baked Chickpeas
Chilli Flavoured, Crunchy Baked Chickpeas

Truth be told I was tempted to try a dozen other dishes like Calzone, Vegetarian Moussaka, Baked Pies and Casseroles. But we are bang in the middle of the festival season and we are having heavy meals almost every other day. So I decided to keep it light and so this Spicy Crunchy Baked Chickpeas.

Do also try my recipes for the Cheesy Baked Spinach and Sweet Corn Casserole and Green Chilli Peppers Stuffed with Hummus!

If you are a vegetarian like me trying to up the protein quotient in your daily food intake, these crunchy-munchies are just what you are looking for! All I need to make these beauties was a load of chickpeas, a little olive oil, salt and chilli powder. That’s it. In fact, you can play around with the flavours and make a range of baked chickpeas.

What I loved about these protein-rich munchies was the crunch, which made them just the perfect anytime, guilt-free snack!

Before I move onto the recipe let me say that the Blog Hop is challenging me to think on my feet and come up with recipes above and beyond what I had planned for the blog. That is so much fun. 🙂

I am looking forward to seeing what the themes are over the next few weeks.

So here I present my Chilli Flavoured Baked Chickpeas.

Spicy, Crunchy, Baked Chickpeas
Spicy, Crunchy, Baked Chickpeas

How to Make Spicy, Crunchy Baked Chickpeas

Crunchy Baked Chickpeas
Print
Spicy, Crunchy Baked Chickpeas
Prep Time
8 hr
Cook Time
1 hrs 40 mins
Total Time
9 hr 40 mins
 

These spicy, crunchy baked chickpeas are just the perfect snack; they are protein-rich, low-oil, and filling. They are in fact a weight watcher's dream and an anytime munchy.

Course: Snack
Cuisine: International
Servings: 4 People
Author: Aruna
Ingredients
  • 2 Cups Dried Chickpeas
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1-2 tsp Chilli Powder
  • Salt to Taste
Instructions
Preparing the Chickpeas
  1. Wash and soak the chickpeas in 4 cups water for 4 to 6 hours.

  2. Drain the water and add 4 cups of water.

  3. Pressure cook for 2 whistles or till the chickpeas are just cooked. They should break when pressed between fingers and not be mushy. Cook them for less time than you would for Chole.

  4. Drain all the water.

  5. Spread the chickpeas on a cloth kitchen towel for 10 minutes or till all the water is absorbed. If you are using a kitchen tissue, blot out all the water.

  6. Set aside.

Making the Baked Chickpeas
  1. To a large bowl, add the olive oil, chilli powder, and salt.

  2. Mix well.

  3. Add the chickpeas and mix well till the chickpeas are covered in oil and spice. There should be just enough oil to coat the chickpeas.

  4. Spread the chickpeas on a baking tray.

  5. Bake in 175C for about 45 to 60 minutes till the chickpeas are crunchy.

  6. Store in an airtight container.

  7. Enjoy with a hot cup of Ginger Tea/Adrakwali Chai!

 

Crunchy, Chilli Flavoured Crunchy Baked Chickpeas
Crunchy, Chilli Flavoured Crunchy Baked Chickpeas

Do you want to see other baked recipes that my fellow Foodie Monday Bloghop bloggers have shared? Hop over to our Facebook page by clicking on the logo.

Ragi Idiyappam | Perfect Springy, Soft, Healthy String Hoppers

I have been meaning to post the recipe for Idiyappam for the longest time, but it was always on the back burner. This week’s Foodie Monday Blog Hop theme of Steamed Dishes came as the perfect vehicle for me to post this recipe. In addition, because I am trying to incorporate millets into my diet, I decided to post the recipe for Ragi Idiyappam.

Springy, Soft, Perfect, Ragi Idiyappam
Springy, Soft, Perfect, Ragi Idiyappam

I love Idiyappam because it is so light and yet filling. It is, in fact, my preferred breakfast when I am in Tamil Nadu or Kerala on vacation. I love eating it with sweetened milk or sweetened Coconut milk. On days when I want a savoury accompaniment, I eat it with Vegetable Kurma or Vegetable Stew, or spicy Sherva.

I chose to make Ragi Idiyappam because Ragi (Finger Millet) is easily available and is very nutritious. Ragi is also known for its cooling properties and is one of the best sources of Calcium. In fact, Ragi Ambli is a very popular breakfast in South India while Ragi Rotti and Ragi Sangati/Ragi Mudde is commonly eaten for lunch.

Read more about Ragi at https://millets.wordpress.com/millets/ragi-finger-millet/

Ragi Idiyappam
Ragi Idiyappam

How To Make Ragi Idiyappam

Ragi Idiyappam | String Hoppers made with Ragi Flour
Print
Ragi Idiyappam | String Hoppers with Finger Millet Flour
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
20 mins
 

This is the recipe for the perfect springy soft Ragi Idiyappam. It is light on the stomach, delicious and super nutritious to boot. 

Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: Indian, Kerala, South Indian, Tamil Nadu
Servings: 6 People
Author: Aruna
Ingredients
  • 1 Cup Ragi Flour
  • 1/2 + 1/2 tsp Oil
  • Salt to Taste
  • Boiling Water
Instructions
Making the Ragi Idiyappam Dough
  1. Add the salt to the ragi flour.

  2. Add boiling water in small amounts and mix with a spoon till it starts to form a ball.

  3. Wait for a couple of minutes for the dough to cool.

  4. Knead with fingers to form a ball.

  5. Add 1/2 tsp oil.

  6. Mix well.

  7. Set aside for 5 minutes.

Making the Ragi Idiyappam
  1. Pour water into the steamer/pressure cooker for steaming the Idiyappam and bring to a boil.

  2. Grease the slots of idli plates.

  3. Divide the dough into 4 to 6 portions.

  4. Fit the medium sev plate into a Chakli press.

  5. Add one portion of dough into the Chakli press and create a nice circle in each slot of the idli plate.

  6. Repeat the process till all the dough is used up.

  7. Steam for 6 to 8 minutes.

  8. Turn off the heat and let the steamer rest for 10 minutes.

  9. Open and gently demold the Ragi Idiyappam.

  10. Serve hot with sweetened milk, sweetened coconut milk, Vegetable Kurma or Vegetable Stew.

 

Ragi Idiyappam - Ready to Eat
Ragi Idiyappam – Ready to Eat

Step-by-Step Method for Making Ragi Idiyappam

  1. First Make the Dough for Ragi Idiyappam
    1. Boil about 1 cup water and let it simmer.
    2. Mix the salt to the ragi flour.
    3. Now add a small amount of the boiling water to the ragi flour.
    4. Use a spoon to mix and add a little more water.
    5. Repeat steps 3 and 4 till the dough starts to form a ball.
    6. Let the dough to cool a bit and then use your fingers to form a soft dough ball.
    7. Now add 1/2 tsp oil and mix well.
    8. Set the dough to rest for for 5 minutes.
  2. Making the Ragi Idiyappam
    1. First bring the water in the steamer or pressure cooker for to a boil. It is important that the Idiyappam starts steaming immediately.
    2. Using a few drops of oil, grease the slots of idli plates.
    3. Using the medium sev plate into a Chakli press and a small amount of dough, create a nice circle in each slot of the idli plate.
    4. Repeat the process till all the dough is used up.
    5. Steam for 6 to 8 minutes.
    6. Turn off the heat and let the steamer rest for 10 minutes.
    7. Open and gently demold the Ragi Idiyappam.

      Ragi Idiyappam
      Ragi Idiyappam
    8. Serve hot with sweetened milk, sweetened coconut milk, Vegetable Kurma or Vegetable Stew.

See what my fellow bloggers at the Foodie Monday Blog Hop have posted at:

Sun Dried Tomato Hummus

I got back loads of sun-dried tomatoes when I visited Italy last year and have become a fan of the flavour they impart to dishes. So this week, I added them to add flavour to Hummus and voila! I had a delicious Sun Dried Tomato Hummus, which has been a great hit with family and friends.

Hummus Flavoured with Sun Dried Tomatoes
Hummus Flavoured with Sun Dried Tomatoes

If you have been following this blog, you would know that I love Hummus and so is the extended family. As a result, I have been experimenting with flavours that I could combine with Hummus and so far have made plain HummusRoasted Bell Pepper HummusCoriander Green Chilli Hummus, Sweet Thai Peanut Hummus, and Roasted Beetroot Hummus.

Coming back to Sun Dried Tomato Hummus, I loved the intense tangy taste that the sun-dried tomatoes imparted to the Hummus and it was a great accompaniment to carrot and cucumber sticks.

How to Make Sun Dried Tomato Hummus

Ingredients

  1. Dried Chickpeas, Garbanzo Beans or Kabuli Chana – 1/2 Cup
  2. Tahini – 2 tbsp
  3. Garlic Cloves – 3 Large
  4. Roasted Cumin Powder – 1/2 tsp
  5. Sun-dried Tomatoes – 1/2 Cup (I used about 10 large ones)
  6. Olive Oil – 5 tbsps
  7. Salt to Taste

Method to Make the Sun Dried Tomato Hummus Recipe

  1. Soaking and Cooking the Chickpeas
    1. Soak the chickpeas in 2 cups water for 6 to 8 hours.
    2. Drain all the water from the chickpeas and rinse well.
    3. Pressure cook the chickpeas in 2.5 cups of water for just 2 whistles.
    4. Let the chickpeas cool.
  2. Soaking the Sundried Tomatoes
    1. Soak the sun-dried tomatoes in 2/3 cup warm water for about 30 minutes.
    2. Remove the sun-dried tomatoes from the water.
    3. Save the water.
  3. Making the Sun Dried Tomato Hummus
    1. Grind the cooked chickpeas, garlic, cumin powder, salt, soaked sun-dried tomatoes, tahini, and 3 tbsp olive oil into a smooth paste.
    2. If required, add some of the water in which the sun-dried tomatoes were soaked to the paste while grinding to get a creamy consistency.
    3. Spoon the hummus into a large bowl.
    4. Cover the surface with the remaining olive oil.
  4. Serve the Sun Dried Tomato Hummus with some Lavash, or Carrot and Cucumber Sticks.

Tips

  • Do not overcook the chickpeas. The chickpeas should be firmer in consistency than when they are cooked for Chole.
  • Do cover the surface of the hummus with olive oil else it tends to dry out in the hot Indian weather.
  • You could use hummus as a dip to accompany salads or chips.
  • You can refrigerate the Sun Dried Tomato Hummus and it will last for about a week.
Hummus with Sun Dried Tomato
Hummus with Sun Dried Tomato