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Monday, April 14, 2014

Appam -a South Indian Pancake

Appam, is a south Indian pancake. Its made with fermented rice batter and coconut milk. They derive their shape from the small Appachatti in which they are cooked.You don’t necessarily need the special pan and you can make do with a small wok or skillet They are fairly neutral in taste and mostly served with sweeten coconut milk  or curry. These appams are made from a batter using raw rice,cooked rice, coconut milk, yeast, salt and a little sugar.

Image below  : From right ,appam, rice,mutton varaval,sweeten coconut milk,sambar,cauliflower and potato masala and crispy fried okra.

1 cup raw rice
3-4  tbsp cooked rice
1 tbsp sugar
40gm grated coconut(white part only)
130ml luke warm water
¼ tsp dried yeast
125ml (1/2 cup) coconut milk
½ tsp salt
2 pinches of soda bicarbonate

Soak rice with water for at least 5 to 6 hrs. Drain.
Blend together , raw rice,cooked rice,grated coconut,dried yeast with lukewarm water until creamy .
Leave to ferment . Since the batter has been grinded with yeast with lukewarm water, it will rise within 3 to 4 hrs.
Heat a mini wok in low heat. I used a normal wok, if you have a non stick wok, would be better.For those who are making appam for the first time , using a non stick mini wok would be recommendable .
Grease the wok with oil.
Meanwhile, add in 125ml of coconut milk and bicarbonate soda into the batter.Mix thoroughly .
Pour about 1 ladleful (depending how large is ur ladle) and swirl around the wok ,and place the wok back on heat.Close with a lid and leave to cook. Usually the edges will start turning light brown within less than a minute.Lightly loosen the edges , make sure the centre hump portion is fully cooked before taking out.You can test by just pressing in the centre lightly with ur finger. One point that I would like to advise is in using center heated stove rather than the stove that has side heat.Use the smallest heat stove ,this will ensure  the appam will cook well in the center portion  while the side of the appam gets slightly brown.When using the stove that has larger heat, the sides cooks faster than the center ,and the sides might end up becoming too crisp!

A few points:
 Grease the wok each time before pouring the batter.
Stir the batter each time before pouring.
Wipe clean the lid each time before covering the wok. In between if there is steam on the lid, wipe clean and close back.

I usually prefer to take the wok from heat, pour the batter , give a swirl ,and then place back the wok onto the heat again.This way, I can control the heat of the steel wok ! Left over batter can be refrigerated. Serve with sweeten coconut milk or fish curry….or any gravy of ur choice ! I like to eat appam with sweet coconut milk.To make coconut milk , squeeze some thick coconut milk, heat for a few seconds and add in sugar and give a stir. Some don’t heat the milk but I prefer to heat it slightly! 


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Saturday, April 5, 2014

Kuzi Ayam/Chicken

Kuzi ayam/chicken is A Kelantanese chicken dish that is rich and delicious usually served with Nasi Dagang. A popular dish for special occasions. The instant spice powder to prepare kuzi can be purchased in many places.But I wanted a recipe that can be shared and prepared by readers from other  parts of the world.The use of  briyani powder was felt easily accessible therefore am sharing this recipe.I will be sharing a kuzi recipe where the spices are prepared from scratch in future blogging. There is many variations in preparing this dish.Let's just assume this recipe as the first version !

This recipe was adapted from Chef Wan with some variation.The dish is simple to prepare and the ingredients are easily available. I had used cream as I had it in my pantry.You can replace it with evaporated milk .As for the tomato puree, use it to your discretion. Certain tomato puree is mild in flavour while some have rather a strong flavour to it. I normally buy the shallot crisps from the market.Sweet,crispy  and flavourful to the taste bud.Therefore, there is no need to waste ones time frying it . Let's check out the recipe!
1.5kg chicken (cut into 12 pcs)
3 cloves garlic
15 shallots, peeled and finely sliced,to make into shallot crisps.(can use ready made ones)
2 medium onions,peeled and diced
20gm grounded almonds
½ cup raisins
1  cup cream or 3/4 to 1 can evaporated milk
1 can tomato puree
2 stalks lemon grass
3 screwpine leaves,knotted/pandan leaves
Salt to taste
Sugar to taste

5 shallots, peeled,pounded
5 cloves garlic,pounded
4 to 5 tbsp briyani powder (mix with water into a creamy paste)

Almond slices ,fried in oil
Raisins, slightly fried in oil.
Chopped red chillies
Handful of chopped coriander leaves

Rub chicken pieces with pounded garlic.Marinate for 30mins. Deep fry the chicken until half fried.Dish out. Now prepare the gravy.Heat about 1/4 cup oil, saute pounded shallots and ginger, then add in the briyani powder and fry until fragrant.Add in diced onions , tomato puree, raisin, lemongrass , screwpine leaves and stir until all ingredients are well combined.Add in sugar and salt to taste and some chopped coriander leaves. Throw in half of the shallot crisp and reserve the rest for garnishing . Stir and add in chicken .Cook until chicken is well combined with the spices. If using evaporated milk, pour and simmer until you get the desired consistency , if  using cream add in towards the end , and stir and leave to thicken ,for about 1 to 2 mins. You can add more cream as per personal taste ,but not too much.We dont want the dish to be too creamy ! Dish out, and garnish with almond,raisins, chopped coriander leaves and some chopped red chillies. take note that the dish is not spicy as we have only used briyani powder.Make sure you use a good mix of briyani powder, as the taste of the powder is what give the taste to the dish.You can add some chopped red chillies for spiciness but do not use chilli powder!

This recipe is submitted to Inspire Me Monday-week 117 hosted by Create With Joy

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