Nei Appam and Uppappam are always welcome preperations in my mothers home. Somehow there is always an extra servings for the savouries, than the sweet version. Since I have a 6 year old, I always assumed she would like the sweet version, and so had soaked for Krishna Jayanthi, some rice for grinding and making Nei Appams, but she somehow was of the opinion that she preferred the salted version and the Lord would definitely like it too, as he was getting way too many sweets!!!
This used to be a favourite evening tiffin at my grandmother`s home, when she would make it, the aroma of chillies and ginger mingled with the aromas of the oil and hing etc would be simply awesome!!!
1 Cup Raw Rice soaked for 3 hours.
1/3 Cup Whole Urad Dhal soaked for 2-3 hours.
1 Inch Ginger shredded to very small pieces.
3-4 Green Chillies slit in to small pieces.
1/4 Cup of Fresh Coconut sliced in to very small pieces.
Handful of fresh curry leaves.
Salt to taste.
- Wash the soaked rice well and grind in the mixer until its a smooth batter. Transfer to a bowl.
- Grind the urad dhal until its well done and you get a smooth batter. Add it to the ground rice batter. Mix well.
- Add sufficient salt to taste.
- Add the chopped ginger, green chillies, coconut slices, torn curry leaves and hing and whisk lightly in to the batter. The consistency should be not too runny yet not too thick.
- Take the Appa Karal and pour out enough oil in to all the little depressions.
- When they are hot enough ladle out enough batter which would fill 80% of the depression. If you fill it all the way, the batter would seep out when its getting cooked/fried in the oil.
- Allow it to fry well on one side and tip it over using a knife and a spoon to pry it out.
- When it cooks well on both sides, use a knife/skewers to remove and place on a tissue to drain out the excess oil.
- Tastes wonderful when accompanied with Tomato Thokku or Coconut Chutney, but I like it plain with the flavours of the ginger and green chillies, combined with the crunchiness from the little coconut pieces.
Sometimes, leftover Appams can harden a little so I serve it up by dunking it in fresh TOmato Rasam almost like Rasa Vadai.
The Urad Dhal provides the air and the sponginess in the Uppappam so its important that the urad dhal is soaked and ground well or you might not find the desired sponginess in the Appam once they are fried.