Monday, June 1, 2009

Puttu



Puttu or steamed rice cake is an authentic breakfast item of Kerala(extreme south west of India) cuisine. This is made by steaming moistened rice flour in a puttu kutti(puttu maker), a mould used for making puttu. Puttu kutti has two parts. The upper portion is a cylindrical shaped vessel-the puttu mould, in which the moistened rice flour along with grated coconut is placed. This part has a perforated lid at the bottom which allows the steam to pass through and a tight lid with small holes at the top to allow the steam to escape.The lower portion forms the steamer in which water is boiled. The upper part with rice flour is placed on top of the steamer and steam is allowed to pass through the dough for prescribed amount of time.


How is Puttu prepared?
Puttu can be made with any type of flour-rice flour, wheat flour, ragi or corn. Puttu made with rice flour is the most common one and widely popular. You should be very careful while making the dough for puttu and can be a real challenge for beginners. The puttu dough doesn't have the consistency of a dough, instead it is a damp coarse mixture/moistened flour which requires only a certain amount of moisture for the required dampness. Hence for making the mixture, water should be sprinkled slowly with immediate mixing. For checking for the right consistency take a portion of moistened flour and press between your fingers. On releasing, the amount of moisture should be just enough to hold the portion together. Too much of moisture would spoil the puttu.


What is Chiratta Puttu?
The puttu that I have posted here is called chiratta(coconut shell) puttu as in traditional preparations the puttu used to be steamed in a chiratta/coconut shell. The puttu maker shown in the picture is called chiratta puttumaker because the upper portion(the mould) resembles a chiratta(coconut shell). Puttu may also be steamed by placing the mould(the upper part of the puttu maker) on top of a pressure cooker. Some people may also use idli moulds for steaming puttu but the mould should have a perforated bottom to allow the steam to pass through. I'm frankly not very familiar with steaming puttu in idli moulds but if there is anyone out there who has tried using this method I would love to hear from you!


Do not have a puttu maker? Dont worry!
You may still make puttu without a puttu maker. But you need empty coconut shells for this purpose. Fill the moistened rice flour along with grated coconut on one half of the coconut shell having a hole at the bottom for steam to pass through. Cover with the other half of the coconut shell having tiny hole at the top to allow the steam to escape and place this on top of the nozzle of a pressure cooker. Voila! You have made chiratta puttu in the traditional way!


Serving Puttu
Puttu is commonly served with ghee(clarified butter) on top, ripe bananas and crispy papads. It forms a perfect combo with Kadala curry, Egg Roast, Mutton stew, Chicken curry, Potato Stew, Lamb Curry etc. There are many variations for making puttu. Instead of making layers with grated coconut and moistened flour, puttu may even be layered with cooked meat, chicken or fish and then steamed. Now lets enjoy this simple, basic, delicious puttu!

Ingredients:
1.5 cups whole wheat flour(You may use store bought puttu flour/rice flour/ragi flour)
Salt to taste
Water for mixing
Grated coconut- 1/3 cup approx

Method:
  • If you are using store bought puttu flour(podi) you may skip the step of roasting the flour. In a pan at low heat roast the flour for about 8-10 minutes with continuous stirring. Do not allow the colour of flour to change.
  • Add enough salt to water.
  • Sprinkle water on roasted flour and mix well.
  • Continue sprinkling water to flour till it becomes moist enough. To check for the right consistency, take a portion of moistened flour and press between your fingers. On releasing the pressure the mixture should have just enough moisture to hold it together without crumbling. At this stage, no more water is needed and the puttu dough is ready.
  • In case after mixing the dough, if some parts of the mixture sticks together/form tiny balls (as it happens often on using wheat flour), grind the dough in a mixer once to get the coarse texture of the dough.
  • Place the perforated lid at the bottom of the puttu mould and place a portion of grated coconut on top of this. Fill the rest of the mould with puttu dough and again top with a layer of grated coconut.
  • Place the lid tightly on top of the mould.
  • Meanwhile heat some water in the puttu steamer at high heat and bring to a boil.
  • When steam starts coming out from the nozzle of the puttu steamer, place the puttu mould on top of the steamer and continue the steaming process at high heat.
  • When steam starts coming out from the top of the puttu mould, reduce heat to medium-high and steam for additional 10 minutes.
  • Remove the mould from the steamer and unmould the puttu.
  • Serve hot!
This goes to EFM June-Breakfast Series event hosted by SriLekha.


Pooja.

Ideal matches for Puttu:

Egg RoastMutton StewLamb CurryChicken CurryPotato StewKerala Kadala Curry

Other Breakfast Dishes:
Kerala Kadala CurryPotato StewFrench ToastCheese OmeletteAppamBlueberry Banana BarsPersimmon Nut BreadIdiappam

52 comments:

Priya said...

Wowowo Pooja...puttu looks gorgeous...Just loved ur idea of making puttu with coconut shell...Never thought of this...

Parita said...

Wow Poojs that some very useful information on puttu, i have never made puttu at home..should try once..

Chef Jeena said...

Great puttu recipe Pooji it looks really yummy. :-)

Pooja said...

Thanks Priya :) Making with puttu maker makes life lot more easier!
Thanks Parita :) Do give a try. You would love it!

Pooja said...

Thanks Jeena :)

Yasmeen said...

Awesome! the traditional method sounds simple enough for me to try:)

Padma said...

Excellent puttu recipe Pooja :)

Pooja said...

Thanks Yasmeen :)
Thanks Padma :)

SAILAJA said...

puttu with wheat flour....innovative

Pooja said...

Thanks Ms.Sailaja :) At my home this was often prepared and I simply love the taste. And healthy too with whole wheat!

Gita said...

Puttu in coconut shell sounds very yummy Pooja...looks so delicious along with the kadala curry :)

Pooja said...

Thanks Gita :) Puttu Kadala is my favourite combo!

Vrinda said...

I lov chiratta puttu..but never made in those chiratta puttu maker..amma used to make this in real chiratta..ivide innum puttayirunnu, ennittum kanditte kothiyavunnu...well described Pooja..

Pooja said...

Thanks Vrinda :) I dont have the other puttu kutti-the cylindrical one, which we normally use. Would definitely bring it when I go home next time! Oh real chirratayil undakkunne puttu adipoli aa alle?! Real authentic taste! And nostalgic memories too :)

Priyameena said...

Puttu looks so authentic...The shredded cocnut on top of it is really looks like a icing on a cake..

Pooja said...

Thanks for the sweet compliment Priya :)

Sweta said...

Thanks a ton for posting the recipe Pooja.It looks awesome.I've never seen puttu in this shape-I've only eaten the long cylindrical ones

Ashwini said...

puttu looks perfect..i love coconut on top of it...

Home Cooked Oriya Food said...

Looks great and must have tasted even better... I have no clue what it is - but looks too complicated to try! If you were around, I would have loved to try...

Lisa said...

This sounds wonderful. The idea of steaming it in a coconut shell is brilliant.

Pooja said...

Thanks HCOF :) Actually its not at all complicated dear! You only need to be careful abt the consistency of dough. Rest is like a cakewalk!
Thanks Lisa :)

5 Star Foodie said...

This is new to me - sounds very yummy and love the coconut on top! Would love to try it soon!

Pooja said...

Thanks 5 Star Foodie :) Do give a try sometime and I would love to hear your verdict too!

Ann said...

Wow.. thats a great tip and love your idea. never tried making puttu before. Puttu looks so tempting :)

Pooja said...

Thanks Ann :)

rahin said...

hey Pooja, the whole Post looks very authentic , love it

Pooja said...

Thanks Rahin :)

Varunavi said...

Lovely puttu,my classmates used to get this to the school,i love to eat this with banana :)

Pooja said...

Thanks Varunavi :) I too love to have with bananas and a dollop of ghee! Heavenly :)

Lena Rashmin Raj said...

hai Pooja....my amma makes puutu like this...but i use puttukutty... :) i loved the fst snap.. :)

Valarmathi said...

Looks wonderful. Drooling here. Looks yummy.

doggybloggy said...

I have been reading this over and over again - I would love to try it!

VineelaSiva said...

Hai pooja the puttu looks delicious.I never heard and see the puttu but the puttu looks yummy pooja.

Pooja said...

Thanks Lena! I too use it.Puttu kutti makes it a lot more easier :)
Thanks Valar :)
Thanks DB :) Do give a try some time. And if you have any doubts feel free to ask any time :)
Thanks Vineela :) Yes I can understand. Though widely popular in the state its relatively unknown outside!

Suparna said...

hi pooja,
I am just awed by ur post! just so amazing and wonderful snaps :) my god! heavenly dish from god's own country :)
keep going girl!!
tc

Pooja said...

Thanks Suparna :)

Ozge said...

I am so glad to learn about a new (to me!) cooking utensil from you dear Pooja :)

Pooja said...

Glad to hear that Ozge! Go ahead and give it a try :)

Asha said...

Beautiful Puttu maker!

Yeah, it was 18yrs since I went to India, it was fun. so much change!!:)

See you in Fall, enjoy.

Pooja said...

Thanks Ashakka :)

Bhawna said...

Hi Pooja, Puttu is definately new term for me, but u describe it so well that now its no more. Thanks for sharing nice kerelaite dish.

Ramya Vijaykumar said...

Hey pooja your puttu maker looks very nice I have a pipe kind and always look out for nice authentic equips ;) puttu looks very soft and I am so tempted now!!!

Pooja said...

Thanks Bhawna :)
Thanks Ramya :) You have cylindrical puttu maker right? Unfortunately I couldnt bring it over here as I exceeded the baggage limit! So could fit in this only :)

Mangala Bhat said...

wow! pOoja ..very new recipe to me ...looks soo yummy ! nice info :) Thanks for sharing

Pooja said...

Thanks Mangala :) And for dropping by too :)

Sunshinemom said...

Using coconut shells for puttu is a lovely innovation. I haven't tried puttu in my kitchen, but I love it. Hey, how do you place the coconut shell on the nozzle? Does it not fall off? Do you level it?

Pooja said...

Thank you :) The procedure is to make tiny hole at the bottom of the shell to allow the steam to pass through and place it on top of the nozzle. The hole should be large enough to make it fit on top of the nozzle. Also place a perforated lid at the bottom to prevent the contents from falling through the hole.
Alternatively you may place the coconut shell with the contents on top of a bowl of steaming water having a tapered top(like the puttu steamer) so that the shell may conveniently sit on top of this!

Hope I have cleared your doubt. Feel free to ask in case you do have more queries. And thanks for reading :)

Kitchen Flavours said...

Oh wow looks yum.......

Pooja said...

Thanks Lubna :)

sangeeta said...

hey this is wonderful.......i have to try this soon.......have had round laddoo shaped puttu with a spicy mutton curry ...but all this info is great n any body can try it now.....bengalis make a similar preparation called pithay(there is a spl name for it i forgot) to be served with date molases.

Pooja said...

Thanks Sangeeta :) Do try it some time! Wow I would love to try the Bengali version too!

? said...

We traditionally make in idli moulds for large gatherings when separate bamboo moulds and chiratta puttu take time; it comes out very well. Liked your post with the pictures of the mould!
Thank you for posting it here!