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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Thursday, February 10, 2011

Kunjappa Curry (?) (Rice balls in Jaggery sweetened Coconut Milk)

Recipe No: 193
I will say that this dish is from two generations back!!! I had neither eaten nor seen this. The story about this dish came from my Mother in Laws second cousin, who called me the day I posted Kozhi Pidi. She had memories of this dish that her Grandmother used to make, and asked me to get more information for my Mother in Law. I was completely mesmerized when she described it and was thrilled to make a dish that I had never eaten, or seen or even heard about.

Well, this has close resemblance to Teengapal Kozhukkatta/ Alli Pidi/ Maniputtu, and differs from those with its signature aromatics and  the sweetening agent. Above all, the name was quiet intriguing too… as it was way far from what a sweet dish should have... Well, if any of you guys out there know this dish or any other name for this dish , please let me know… I would love to hear more about it…
Ingredients                                                   Serves 6-8
For the Rice Balls
  • Rice Flour……………….....1 Cup (Idiyappam/ String Hopper Flour is the best)
  • Salt………………………......1/8 teaspoon
  • Ghee…………………….......1 Teaspoon
  • Boiling Water………….....1 Cup
For the Sauce
  • Jaggery……………………….2/3 Cup
  • Thin Coconut Milk..........1 Cup (Medium thin)
  • Thick coconut Milk……....1/2 Cup
  • Dry Ginger Powder……...1/8 Teaspoon
  • Roasted Cumin Powder…1/8 Teaspoon
Method of Preparation
  1. Mix together Rice Flour and Salt and make a soft dough using boiling Water and Ghee.
  2. Make small balls out of the dough. (I made around 60 balls)
  3. Steam the Rice balls for 8-10 minutes or until cooked through. Keep aside till ready to be used.
  4. Melt Jaggery with ½ cup Water and strain it two times (to remove the impurities).
  5. Put the strained Jaggery syrup in a pan on medium heat and boil till slightly thick.
  6. Add the steamed Rice balls and boil for about 3 minutes stirring often.
  7. Add the thin Coconut Milk and continue cooking stirring often for around 6-8 minutes. By this time the sauce will be reduced considerably.
  8. Add the thick Coconut Milk and let it start to simmer.
  9. Add Dry Ginger powder and roasted Cumin powder; mix well.
  10. Switch off the heat and let it sit in the same pan for 5 minutes before serving hot or warm.
  • The dough should be as soft as Idiyappam/ String Hopper dough.
  • You can use a pressure cooker to stem the Rice Balls. Place the balls in an Idli mold; and steam it without the weight.

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


Priya Suresh said...

We do similar too,irresistible dish..

Indian Khana said...

This is new for me and looks delish

Vimitha Durai said...

Loved ur blog. Happy to follow you...
Do drop by when u find time @ My culinary Trial room

Raga said...

intresting receipe no oil too....will give a try

Unknown said...

Nice color and healthy

Raga said...

Asha, Tried this receipe today.....Didnt turn up so colourful as urs.....Mine was white colour....Coconut Milk was dominating.
Taste was good however probably Rice Flour I used was not correct.....Rice balls were little hard.....However woul try again to get the same look as urs

Asha said...

Raga..White color is due to the type of Jaggery used... I used dark almost black colored Jaggery...
Rice balls will become hard if you use raw flour...You have to use fired Flour like the Idiyappam/ String Hopper Flour as I mentioned... Don't forget to add a bit of Ghee while kneading...

Rajeswari said...

Your blog is really good. Its like some one teaching us sitting on our side. I've gone through several dishes here. Every thing seems to b so easy n we could do it its because of the method of yur explanation thanks.will definitely try when time permits

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