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Friday, 29 August 2014

Ganesh Chaturthi & Elai Kozhukattai!

Lord Ganesh is worshipped in almost all hindu festivals and he is called as the god of the beginnings. Every temple & any auspicious occasions begins with worshipping of Lord Ganesh.  Ganesh Chaturthi / Vinayaka Chathurthi is celebrated in the honour of this elephant headed in the Indian Hindu community. Traditionally, an idol of Lord Ganesh is kept at houses and are decorated with flowers and herbal leaves and worshipped for 3 or more days. Later the clay idol is put into lakes / rivers / wells or beaches along with the herbal leaves. It is said to purify the water. 

And the food that is cooked as offerings are typically Spicy Chickpea Sundal, Kozhukattai, Ladoos (Rava Ladoo recipe coming soon)and fruits. But it varies from every household. And I love Kozhukattai! Its my breakfast/lunch/dinner on vinayaka chathurthi.  

Technically I have never come across Elai "kozhukattai". There is Ela Ada / Elai Adai with is a Kerela sweet make in the same say which has chopped jackfruits. And there is "Olai" kozhukattai, the same dish made in olai and steamed. So am really not sure if its right to call this Elai Kozhukattai but it is and its absolutely delicious. 

You Will Need:
2 Cups of Rice Flour
Little Salt
1/2 tsp of Coconut Oil / Vegetable Oil
Approx 1 1/2 - 2 cups of water

Coconut Poornam / Filling:
1 1/4 Cups of Freshly Grated Coconut
1/ Cup Jaggery, Broken 
Little Salt
1/4 tsp of Cardamom Powder
1/2 tsp Ghee 

The Cooking:

Step 1:

Preparing the Filling / Poornam. 
Place a heavy bottom pan on  medium heat with jaggery. Add a dash of water to help melt the jaggery. Once its melted completely with no lumps strain it through a sieve. Then bring the jaggery back on heat. Once the jaggery begins to bubble around the sides add the grated coconut. Let it cook for few mins till the coconut has drained all the excess water and the fillings has started to thicken a little. Sprinkle the cardamom powder and the ghee and give a good mix. Take off heat and keep aside. 

Step 2:

Preparing the Rice Flour Dough:
Place the flour on a large bowl.
Pour the water, oil and salt in a bowl and bring it to a rolling boil. Once the water comes up to a good boil gently and carefully pour the water into the flour and mix with a wooden spoon / steel spatuala.

NOTE: The consistency you are looking for is a non sticky soft dough neither dry or crumble or too watery.  

NOTE: The mentions water quantity is approx. It may require more or less to achieve the consistency. 

Step 3:

Preparing the Kozhukattai:
Place the banana left directly over the stove to welt the leaf. This makes easy folding. Now oil your palms well and make a lime sized ball out of the rice flour dough. Then cut rectangles out of banana leaf and apply little oil. Then flatten the ball of dough on the leaf using your fingers. Make sure it does not go out of the leaf. Then take the filling and stretch it over the spread rice flour. 

NOTE: If you want little less in sweet then spread the filling in over in half of the rice flour. If you want more sweet (that's how I like mine) spread the filling fully over the rice flour. 

Then just fold the banana leaf into half and seal shut slightly flattening it with your palm. 

NOTE: You can simply do by folding the banana leaf into half or make a parcel and tie with twines to make it more fancy.

Step 4:

Steaming the Kozhukattai:

Now place the prepared kokukattaies into a steamer and steam for about 7 - 10 mins or until the rice flour is completely cooked. 

Happy Cooking!


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