Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Manda Pitha ( also known as Modak in Maharashtra)
Cooking Time Required: 1 hour
Cost of Preparation: 60-70 Rupees
Ingredients: Broken Basmati rice ( 1 1/2 cups ), milk ( 2 cups ), water ( 2 cups ), pepper powder ( 1/5 tsp ), cardamon powder ( 1/4 tsp ), salt ( 1/4 tsp or to taste).
For the pura : Coconut ( finely grated, 1 no ), small lumps of jaggery ( 6-7 tsp ), raisins ( 1/2 cup ), ghee ( 1 tsp ).
Preparation: Soak the rice for 10-15 mins. Wash and drain all the water ( Use a colander, do not dry under the fan or the sun ). Put in a grinder and grind into a fine powder.
Grate the coconut or grind the pieces in a mixer-grinder.
Cooking: Bring the milk and water to boil. Add salt, cardamon and pepper powder. Add the rice flour in small batches and mix continuously so that no lumps are formed.
Stir the mixture on a low flame for about 15 minutes till it takes on a softer consistency than the dough used for making rotis . Switch off the flame at this stage.
Allow the dough to cool down a few degrees till it is tolerable. Rub ghee all over your hands and knead the dough for 5 mins to make it smoother.
Heat a pan. Add ghee followed by the raisins and stir fry for 1 minute. Add grated coconut and jaggery at this stage. Fry for 5-6 minutes and remove from the stove.
Rub some more oil over your hands. Break small balls out of the dough. Flatten out and put some of the coconut stuffing on it. Close and mould into balls.
Boil water in a idli maker. Spread some banana leaves over the idli plates. Put the balls over it. Close the lid and steam 20 mins. Allow to stand with lid covered for 5 mins.
Take out of the idli vessel and serve hot.
Note: When adding the rice flour to milk and water, pass it through a seive to avoid any lumps.
Also try to make the balls when the dough is hot else it loses its elasticity.