Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Recipe of the month - Karnataka speciality: Akki rotti



Akki rotti is my favourite breakfast dish......period. There is nothing I enjoy more apart from these delicious rice-based pancakes that are a popular speciality of my home state of Karnataka in South India. My maternal grandmother makes the best akki rottis and every time she is around, we get her to make them for us. Amma makes yummy rottis too and she makes it a point to prepare some for me when I'm home. Over the years, I have heard of different methods and techniques of making this dish from different sources and I had even tried a couple of them to varying degrees of success. This recipe works the best for me so I've faithfully stuck to it.

Akki rotti is made out of rice flour which is made into a dough along with water, yoghurt, grated coconut, chopped onions, green chillies, cooked field beans (avarekalu), curry leaves, coriander leaves and dill (sabbasige soppu). However, there are several variations that can be made to the dough based on an individual's preferences (for example, I absolutely love the herb dill but my husband isn't such a fan or some people like grated carrot in the rottis whilst others don't). The dough is made into a ball and patted with wet palms over a greased laminated sheet or plantain leaf to resemble a thin pancake. This is then transferred to a hot tawa (pan). Sometimes the rotti is patted directly over the tawa. A small amount of oil/ghee is spread over it and the rottis are roasted until golden brown spots appear on both sides. It is best served hot along with a variety of chutneys and/or chutney pudi (spiced chutney powder).

In my household, akki rotti is one of the most popular breakfast requests for a weekend brunch (read: not only mine but also my hubby's favorite!)Soft, crispy, flavorful, wholesome, gluten-free and vegan-friendly....this dish is crowd-pleaser which ever way you look at it!

Akki Rotti

Preparation time: 45 min
Cooking time: 3-4 min per rotti
Recipe Level: Easy
Serves: 4
Recipe source: A combination of several family members

Please note that the recipe and photos have been updated. The step-by-step photos below are from  halving the quantities in this recipe. 

Ingredients:

3 cups rice flour
2 cups boiling water
1/2 cup grated fresh coconut
~1 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup field beans/avarekalu
1 large onion, finely chopped
3-5 green chillies, finely chopped (adjust according to spice level tolerance)
1 small carrot, finely grated, Optional
A sprig of curry leaves, finely chopped
1 small bunch coriander leaves, finely chopped
1/4 - 1/2 cup dill/sabsige soppu, finely chopped (adjust the quantity depending on your liking)
1-2 tbsp oil or ghee, for greasing
Salt to taste


Method:

1. Boil the avarekalu in salted water for around 2-4 min or until done. Drain, take off the outer skin of the avarekalu and keep aside. 


2. Bring 2 cups of water to boil in a large pot (preferably non-stick), switch off the flame and mix the rice flour into it. Add in the chopped onion, chopped green chillies, grated coconut, grated carrot, avarekalu and salt to the rice flour mixture and give it a mix. Keep the pot tightly covered with a lid for about 10 min. When covered, the steam from hot water helps in getting smooth dough. When the pot and mixture is cool enough to handle, add the chopped dill, coriander leaves, curry leaves, plain yogurt and mix well. Knead the dough until all the ingredients are well combined. This dough should smooth and easy to pat down on a greased surface (note: it ought to be wetter than chapathi dough).


3. Take a large lemon sized ball and place it in the middle of a lightly greased laminated sheet or banana leaf. Pat the ball with the palm of your hand to form a ½ cm thick circle (dip your palm in water while you do this). Poke a few holes in the rotti.
4. Heat a tawa and invert the rotti gently onto the tawa. After 1 min, gently pry away the sheet/leaf. Add little oil/ghee to the edges of rotti. Cover and cook the rottis for about 3-4 min on medium heat till brown spots start to appear on its surface. Flip it around and cook for another minute or two. If you don't have the laminated sheets, you can pat the rottis directly onto the tawa (sprinkle some water on the tawa to cool it down in between rottis). If you are able to fold the rottis in half like a chapathi - congratulations, you have made wonderfully soft akki rottis! I personally like them to be a little more on the crispier side so I'm not too bothered about the foldability :)


5. Serve these rottis hot with a dollop of butter along with accompaniments such as coconut chutney/ spiced chutney powder /badane ennegai /usli.


Notes:

  • The quality of rice flour is very important in this recipe. If the rice flour that you use is not good, the rottis do not end up soft. I get a few packets of rice flour from India every year which I reserve especially for akki rotti :)
  • Keep in mind the the chopped onions also release some amount of water into the dough so they have to be added to the rice flour first before you begin kneading the dough with yoghurt. 
  • I know of many people who don't really like the taste of dill so if you are trying this recipe for the first time, go easy on the quantity of dill. 
  • A tip to get softer akki rottis is to use one peeled and grated chayote (we call it seemebadnekai) in this recipe. If you do, you will need to reduce the amount of yoghurt to ~1/4-1/2 cup. 


Cheers,


4 comments:

  1. Looks delicious ! I am going to try this for sure. Whats avare kaalu ?

    ReplyDelete
  2. It is called flat beans or field beans in English. It comes in pods which u have to peel to release the beans which are light green and oval.

    ReplyDelete
  3. woow..i really wanna try this..i used to love akki rotis..made in the hostel..would never leave it for anything ..i was hunting for this recepie for a long time..will surely try it out :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Wooow..will really try this one..have been searching for this recepie since a very long time..we used to get it in the hostel in JSS..n i would never miss it for anything :)

    ReplyDelete

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