Creating a blog was out of the question for a long time for me, as measuring everything in the kitchen was like biting into an eggshell. I enjoy cooking and don’t want to waste even a slightest bit of enjoyment in that small world of mine. But little did I know that everything will change, when my husband came home with the Oscar nominated film ‘Julie and Julia’( a real life story) where Julie Powell (part played by Amy Adams) challenged herself to make all the 524 recipes from Julia Child's cook book ‘Mastering the Art of French Cooking’ and blogging all her experiences (The Julie/Julia Project). It was an inspiring movie. A few days later when we were discussing this casually with a friend of ours over tea…everything changed dramatically…..” How about you making at least half of it in one year? Not French but your own. 262 recipes that will inspire others and present it as a blog?” For a minute my mind traveled faster than light… With an experience as a helper in my mother in laws kitchen for 6 years followed by a three year everyday struggle to satisfy the palate of my foodie husband, if I cannot do it then why should I cook? But on the other side with an experience in English literature extending no more than expanding outline stories in English grammar class when I was 18 and two small kids that come in handy at times, will a commitment for the next one year work? Anyway my ‘cook's ego’ didn’t allow me to say no...

So my friends …here I am opening my recipe book, trying to perfect and present 262 recipes in the coming 365 days….A Challenge that will of course tastes good. Come.. Have a walk with me along my journey.. Cheering and inspiring….Forgiving and tolerating…Testing and tasting….for ‘A Tasty Challenge’

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Monday, January 30, 2012


Recipe No: 283
Traditionally Unniyappam is made with fresh Rice Flour. But as making/ getting fresh Rice Flour is a bit hard here in US, this is the best alternative. Well, I don’t think that the word ‘alternative’ do justice to these Unniyappams as it is far too easy to make and at the same time tastier and softer than the traditional ones. Oh… forgot to mention one important thing… I consider this as one of the best ways to use those black skinned overripe Bananas… Isn’t it wonderful? My friend who is from the North of Kerala says they call this ‘Kara Appam’ (As these are made in a ‘Kara’/ ‘Unniyappa Kara’).
Ingredients                               Makes around 40 small ones
  • Long Grain Rice……1 Cup (Pachari)
  • Banana………………..1 Big/ 2 small (1/2 cup mashed)
  • Jaggery……………….1 Cup (cut into small pieces)
  • Ghee……………………1 1/2 Tablespoons
  • Coconut Pieces…….2 Tablespoons (Cut into very small pieces)
  • Cumin Seeds………..1/2 Teaspoon (Optional)
  • Sesame Seeds………1/2 Teaspoon
  • Oil for frying
  • Unniyappa Kara or Paniyaram pan for making the Unniyappam.
Method of Preparation
  1. Wash and soak the Rice for 5-6 hours.
  2. Melt Jaggery in ¼ Cup Water on a medium low flame until the pieces are melted thoroughly. Strain it twice to remove the impurities. Let it cool completely.
  3. Drain the Rice well and grind it together with Banana and the melted Jaggery into a course batter. (The consistency requires special mentioning… It doesn’t have to be smooth; if we touch the batter and rub it between fingers we should feel the small bits in it.)
  4. Pour it into a container and let it rest/ soak for about 6 hours. (I keep this overnight. This step is very important and read the 'notes' part to know more.)
  5. Heat Ghee in a shallow pan on medium heat and fry the Coconut pieces till it starts to brown. Add the Cumin Seeds; stir and off the heat immediately. Pour this into the soaked batter together with the Sesame Seeds and mix well. (Adjust the thickness of the batter at this stage; if poured from a height it should flow down easily; you may not have to add any more Water if you follow the recipe carefully.)
  6. Heat an Unniyappam/ Paniyaram pan on a medium heat and add the Oil up to 3/4th of the indentations. (Please refer the picture) Let it heat up.
  7. Pour a tablespoon full of batter into each indentation and let it cook on the bottom. Once cooked, the sides will detach from the pan and will start to rotate in the Oil. (Please refer the picture.)
  8. Turn the Unniyappam so that the other side is also cooked. (I pour 1 Tablespoon batter each and it took a minute on one side and 30 seconds on the other…yes very fast…)
  9. Remove it from the Oil and let the excess Oil drain on a paper towel.
  10. Serve warm or at room temperature. This will stay good at room temperature for 3-4 days; but will stay good for a longer period in the refrigerator. In the case of refrigeration, let it come to a room temperature or slightly warm it up before serving.
  • I used the dark Kerala type Jaggery, so using alternatives can reduce the color of the Unniyappam. Also it was broken into small pieces. Grating may change the level of sweetness of the dish.
  • I used the common Robusta type Banana that is available in US. These are big ones, so if you are using small variety you may have to use 2 or 3 depending on the size.
  • This batter will be a little bit thinner than the Dosa batter.
  •  Letting the batter rest for at least 6 hours is very important, as it helps the Rice particles soak making the Unniyappam rise; take into consideration that we are not adding any Baking Soda. Please note the bottom picture to see how much it rises without any leavening agents; this will happen only if you allow the batter to rest.
  • To reduce the amount of batter sticking on to the 'Kara', let the pan heat up a bit before adding the Oil. Let the Oil heat again before adding the batter.
  • The level of the Oil in the pan will rise with the addition of the batter; consider this when you pour Oil into the pan.
  • Using a wooden skewer or an elongated rod with a pointed end is better to turn the Unniyappam and to take them out of the Oil.
  • I put the gas stove on medium heat (on 5) throughout the whole process of making Unniyappam.(No increasing or decreasing the heat) Find a suitable moderate heat level on your stove for the process. Too high heat will burn the Unniyappam without cooking the inside and too low heat will make the Unniyappam absorb a lot of Oil.
  • This recipe can be easily doubled.

Make it enjoy the deliciousness and 
serve it to your family with love…


Vimitha Durai said...

Hubby's favorite. Looks so perfect

Anisha said...

Unniappams are my favoutite... These look perfect!

Rajeswari said...

excellent.......... n i do this at home

sojo said...

I love this...urs look sooooooooooo tempting, Ash, as always!!!!!! Ive posted this recipe some time back.....

Mélange said...

Wow..they have come out perfect Asha..Yum and nostalgic!

Faseela said...

perfectly made unniappams....

Asha said...

Thanks guys....

Neetz said...

superbly done and yummyyy!!!

Julie said...

Ingane kothipikkalle..My favorite,But here I don't have unniayyapam chatti..:-(
Very tempting :-))

Erivum Puliyum

Unknown said...

Perfectly made unniayyapam dear.....I just love them:-)


Priya Suresh said...

Delicious and super tempting unniyappams..

Sobha Shyam said...

this is my tempting and yummy unniappams :)

Laly Ashley said...

There u go..........u remember i was keep on asking unniyappam recipe....Thank u Asha kutti ....thank u : ) - Laly Ashley

Umm Mymoonah said...

Soft and fluffy, I can just feel the flavours in it.

Unknown said...

Ah - I am finally seeing the appam kuxhi used for its intended purpose - I use it to make so many other things but not this - must try this too now
Looks inviting Asha :)

Laly Ashley said...

asha chechi...Thank You... Tried it ....Came out really soft n sweet....
Ashley's mommy suggested to add some cooked Rava (Sooji) too..I did that too
Waiting for more from you...

Thank You
Hope u n family doing good.

Unknown said...

tnx for your detailed tips,

Ash said...

Hi. Can you please let me know if the batter needs to be kept in room temperature or in the fridge for overnight fermentation ?

(I live in Bharat - Mumbai. It is hot summer here now). I ask this question, as I'm not sure if ground banana and ground coconut will not rot at room temperature.

Kindly let me know.
Thank you

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