Ribbon Pakoda gets it name from its shape I suppose! The fritters look like ribbons – so when did the name come – after the Britishers came in, then what would have been its name before?
Ofcourse, there are a few tamil names to these fritters-
1. ‘Naadaa Thenkuzhal’ – fritters in the shape of string or rope
2. ‘Olai Pakoda’ – Olai is the name given to leaves of coconut and palm – especially dried leaves – Olai Chuvadi means Palm script written centuries ago. Ilai is the word for leaves in general – Maavilai – mango leaf; vaazhai ilai – banana leaf and so on…
Panai Olai for Palm leaf and Thennai Olai for coconut leaf – the dried version. The young leaves of these are called panang-kuruthu and thennang-kuruthu – so ‘kuruthu’ is fresh leaf here. Olai is the dried leaf. These fritters might look like the dried leaves too!!
There needs more exploration into the reasoning of names.
Now, to Diwali and the savouries stored for days, but the storage attempt always invariably fails – as they wouldn’t last a couple of days. All passers by in the family would open the ‘thooku chatti’ or the vessel in which the savouries are stored and then – not to worry – life moves on – to the next savoury or sweet.
- kadalai maavu/gram flour – 2 cups
- arisi maavu/rice powder – 1 cup
- milagai vatral podi/red chilli powder – 1/2 tsp – 1 tsp
- salt – to taste
- perungayam/asafoetida powder – 1/4 tsp
- vennai/butter or nei/clarified butter – 3 tsp
- yennai/oil – to deep fry
- thanneer/water – as needed
- poondu/garlic – 4 cloves (make a paste)
- seeragam/cumin seeds – 1 tsp
dough and the mould
Method of Preparation
- Sieve both the powders together
- Mix chilli powder, salt, asafoetida powder and butter/clarified butter to the dry powders
- Add enough water to make a stiff dough
- Heat oil in a pan for deep frying
- Grease the inner cylinder of the murukku kuzhal/maker and place a part of the dough and close with ribbon pakoda disc
- When the oil is hot, turn down the stove to medium and press the dough into the oil into circular basket like fritters
- Fry till golden brown and crisp
- Remove in absorbant tissue and store after cooled. Break the fritters for easy storage (also to avoid over-eating).
- This is a quick and easy version with red chilli powder. A ground paste of red chillies and garlic tastes better. Garlic aids in digestion.
- Cumin seeds are sprinkled for digestion as well as better looks of the fritters.
- Butter helps in the softly crisp texture of the fritters. Hot oil can also be poured into the powder with butter.
- Do not fry in very high oil temperature. The pakodas would turn dark very quickly. Keep in medium and adjust the heat accordingly for the perfect colour and crispness.
- For those who are searching for asafoetida in ingredient picture, sorry the box got over and I threw it away. The other new one would arrive tomorrow from the Indian shop.
If you do not have the disc – that’s something to worry at the moment… please buy one now!