It seemed like Navarathri started just now and it's already the 9th day, Saraswathi Pooja. Happy Pooja holidays everybody. We prepare a lot of sweets and sundals these holidays, but "puttu" is very important and our favorite too.
This puttu recipe is different from what the Keralites prepare. It's made with rice flour, grated coconut and jaggery. The process is also time consuming but worth every effort. Traditionally it's prepared by soaking raw rice in water, draining it, spreading it on a cloth and powdering the rice, while the rice is still damp. But to make the process more simple store bought rice flour is used. This is especially prepared on a Friday and is distributed to everybody who visits our home to see the Golu. I've prepared it successfully a couple of times 3 years back, but now I have totally forgotten the procedure. Fortunately my mother is here and she prepared it this time. It came out very well and I wanted to record it before I forget it once again.
Rice Flour Puttu Recipe
- 3 Cups Rice Flour
- As Required Water Hot
- A Pinch Salt
- 1/4 Teaspoon Turmeric Powder
- 2 And 1/4 Cups Jaggery Powdered
- 1 Cup Preferably Fresh Grated Coconut (Or Even Less)
- 1/2 Teaspoon Cardamom Powder
- A Pinch Pacha Karpooram
- 1/4 Cup Cashewnuts Broken Into Small Pieces
- Toast the rice flour in a dry skillet until hot.
- Boil little water (around 1 cup) with salt and turmeric powder.
- Sprinkle as much water as required in the toasted flour little by little. The correct consistency is, you should be able to form balls, but at the same time you should also be able to crumble it back into powdered form.
- Steam this flour mixture for 20 minutes. My mother filled little water in a big frying pan, placed a small trivet in the bottom and used the vegetable steamer which came along with my electric rice cooker to steam the flour. Wet a cotton cloth and pour the prepared rice powder in it and cover by bringing the ends of the cloth over the flour and place it on the vegetable steamer and close the frying pan with a lid.
- Once the flour is steamed, transfer this mixture to a big plate and spread it. If it has lumps sift it using a sieve.
- Meanwhile in another vessel add the jaggery and water just enough to cover the jaggery and melt it.
- Sieve the jaggery solution to get rid of any impurities.
- Again pour it back in the vessel, add the coconut, cardamom powder and pachakarpooram and let this mixture boil.
- When a drop of the jaggery syrup is dropped in cold water, you should be able to form it into a ball. When you reach this consistency switch of the stove and remove the vessel from the stove.
- Now add this mixture little by little to the steamed flour and simultaneously mix the flour and jaggery syrup with the other hand using a spatula. I have a big wooden fork which is simply perfect for this job. Be careful because the syrup will be very hot and it will scald your skin if it drops.
- In a dry skillet toast the cashew pieces and add it to the prepared Puttu.
- The above measurement gives a fairly big portion of Puttu. You can try it on a small scale with 1 cup of rice flour, 3/4 cup of powdered jaggery and 1/4 cup of grated coconut.
- Cashew nuts can be toasted in ghee. Heat 1 tablespoon of ghee and fry the cashews in it and add it to the Puttu. This keeps well for a week.
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