I have been missing India a lot recently, especially Kerala, so this morning I woke up with a firm purpose in mind. I cooked some Indian chickpeas, grated a couple of coconuts and made up a spice powder so I could make puttu and kadala.
I bought my puttu kutti in Kerala over a year ago, but have been too nervous to try to use it till now! I was taught the basics by a chef out in Kerala, and had it drilled into me that the mixture should be just lightly moistened and not made into a dough or lumpy paste. I was worried that it would come out dry and powdery, or that it would fall apart, so I have been putting it off. Yesterday I bit the bullet and bought myself some Double Horse brand puttu powder, made of proper red rice which is some much nicer than the white one. I was all ready!
I cooked the kadala recipe from Ammini Ramachandran's brilliant book, "Grains, Greens and Grated Coconuts" to go with the puttu. The roasted coconut and coriander powder smelt really good, and I couldn't wait for everything to be ready.
I also had a really ripe plantain that my Dad bought on Friday, and I like nothing more than to steam ripe plantains (either with or without jaggery and ghee - today without) and eat them with upma or puttu. I just wished I had more than one!
Here is my puttu kutti in action. It is only small, so for this batch of puttu (made with 2 cups rice flour and 1 cup coconut, plus extra between layers) I used it three times. It was ok though, because it is easy enough to split between four whilst you wait for the next, and it does not take long to cook. We couldn't actually finish all the puttu anyway!
Here is one of the puttu, the first in fact. You can see that I did not get the coconut layer in the middle exactly half way! Never mind, it was very good.
And here is my thali. Well, my first thali anyway! It was so good I had to go back for seconds. Oh, you know how it is with birthday weekends, especially when you have family over who are usually away - you eat too much and have a very good time!