Category Archives: Dosai/Pancake Varieties

Kullankar Arisi Dosai/Pancakes – Dosai with Native/Traditional Rice Varieties of Tamilnadu – 4

Let’s make dosais/pancakes with Kullankar Arisi – another of the native/indigenous rice varieties of Tamilnadu.

A few health benefits of Kullankar Arisi-

  • High in antioxidants and hence boosts immunity
  • Aids in Insulin Secretion and hence tackles diabetes
  • Helps in weight reduction

Kullankar Arisi Dosai/Pancakes
  


  

Ingredients (makes approximately 12-15 dosais)

  

• Kullankar Arisi/rice – 1 ½ cups
• Karuppu ulundhu/black gram – ½ cup
• Vendhayam/fenugreek seeds – ½ tsp
• Kal Uppu/rock salt – ½ tsp

  

Method of Preparation


  

Making batter-

1. Wash well Kullankar Arisi and black gram.
2. Add fenugreek seeds and soak overnight or minimum 6 hours in water
3. Grind well in a grinder or any blender
4. Once ground into a fine batter add rock salt and mix well or grind the rock salt in the end.
5. Leave the batter overnight or until fermented well.
6. Dosai batter is ready for use.

  
Making Dosai-

1. Heat dosaikal or the pancake pan on stove
2. Pour a ladle of batter and spread into perfect round pancakes – preferably thin
3. Pour droplets of gingelly oil on the sides of the Dosai for easy lift of pancake.


  

4. Turn the Dosai to the other side and let it cook
5. Take out once done- remember it would take just about 30-50 seconds to cook one side of thin Dosai. If one keeps it longer, the texture of pancake would be lost.


  

6. Make Kullankar Arisi Dosai crisp or soft as preferred.

Kaattuyaanam Arisi Dosai/Pancakes – Dosai with Native/Traditional Rice Varieties of Tamilnadu – 3


  

The next in the traditional/native rice varieties on our list is Kaattuyaanam Arisi. This is a red rice variety.

The name of the rice has an interesting connotation. The name has two parts –

Kaattu is a derivation of KAADU which means forest
Yaanam is a derivation of YAANAI which means elephant

In Tamil Language.

The rice grows quite fast, tall up to 7 to 8 feet that even if a forest elephant enters the rice field, it would be hidden in the tall grass and be unnoticed. Hence, the name denoting both forest and elephant remained with the variety. Additionally, due to the ability of this rice to boost immunity, thereby providing an elephant’s strength to the body, the name has stood for centuries.
  

Health Benefits of Kaatuyaanam Arisi

This rice is blackish red in colour –

  1. provides relief of knee ailments
  2. tackles diabetes
  3. reduces risk of cancer
  4. strengthens heart

  
Now, let’s move on with the making of Dosai/Pancake out of this native rice that makes the body strong and disease free.
  

Kaattuyaanam Arisi Dosai/Pancakes

  


  

Ingredients (makes approximately 12-15 dosais)

• Kaattuyaanam Arisi/rice – 1 ½ cups
• Karuppu ulundhu/black gram – ½ cup
• Vendhayam/fenugreek seeds – ½ tsp
• Kal Uppu/rock salt – ½ tsp

  

Method of Preparation
  

Making batter-

1. Wash well Kaattuyaanam Arisi and black gram.
2. Add fenugreek seeds and soak overnight or minimum 6 hours in water
3. Grind well in a grinder or any blender
4. Once ground into a fine batter add rock salt and mix well or grind the rock salt in the end.
5. Leave the batter overnight or until fermented well.
6. Dosai batter is ready for use.
  

Making Dosai-

1. Heat dosaikal or the pancake pan on stove
2. Pour a ladle of batter and spread into perfect round pancakes – preferably thin
3. Pour droplets of gingelly oil on the sides of the Dosai for easy lift of pancake


  

4. Turn the Dosai to the other side and let it cook
5. Take out once done- remember it would take just about 30-50 seconds to cook one side of thin Dosai. If one keeps it longer, the texture of pancake would be lost.


  

6. Make Kaattuyaanam Arisi Dosai crisp or soft as preferred. The Dosai also comes out beautifully crisp that you can shape it yourself.
7. A dollop of new/clarified butter is an extravagant addition to the beautiful Dosai.

8. Enjoy with any kind of thuvayal or chutney. We had with these three-


Peerkangai thuvayal – ridge guard chutney
Thakkali thokku – tomato thokku (fine paste)
Pooti Aachi Vengaya Thuvayal – Great grandmother’s onion chutney
9. Chutney recipes to follow.

Kudavaazhai Arisi Dosai/Pancakes – Dosai with Native/Traditional Rice Varieties of Tamilnadu – 2

In the list of traditional or native rice varieties of Tamilnadu, my attempt in making dosais continues with Kudavaazhai/Kudavaalai Arisi.

  


  

In search of health benefits of this rice, I could find the following websites with some information,
  

a. Health benefits of traditional rice varieties in valaitamil.com

http://player.mashpedia.com/player.php?q=DGIPfbtyLhg

b. Parampariya nel vagaigalin maruthuva gunangal (medicinal properties of traditional rice varieties) by Prof. M. Menaka

http://player.mashpedia.com/player.php?ref=mashplayer&q=cdmfZC0nu-4

c. Parampariya nel vagaigal – enathu payanam 2015 (traditional grain varieties – my travel 2015)

http://player.mashpedia.com/player.php?q=zq-Tfr1aeqU

Another research file on native rice varieties shows that –

  

  • In terms of the Glycemic Index (GI) it is seen that all indigenous varieties have a GI that lower than the modern variety.
  • When the GI of the indigenous variety is compared to the modern variety White Ponni, on a scale when the GI of White Ponni is 100, it was found that the GI of Kullakar, Kovuni, Karungkuruvai and Kalanamak are in the range 50-55 while Mapillai Samba and Kudaivazhai are in the range of 66 – 70.

Click to access ciks_progress_report_kp_with_annexes.pdf


  

These websites provide insights regarding native rice, along with those activists who have been greatly encouraging the spread of such native rice varieties among common people. These enthusiasts have been influential in introducing the grains to farmers, which has been gaining support and confidence among various groups to give a new boom to indigenous rice varieties.

What we need to know about these native rice varieties is that, these are all unprocessed brown, red or black rice. When we say ‘unprocessed’, it suggests that the nutrient value of the rice is intact and not polished away with the polishing of rice. When the western world subscribes to a particular health ideology – the learned community of the various developing countries give respect to those ideas, not knowing their native food habits have referred to the same, several centuries earlier. If we were smart enough to withstand the introduction of refined ready-made foods like pizza, pasta, burgers, noodles, parathas or the South Indian parottas- which are all made with refined flour – either from restaurants or made at home– we would have been a healthier society with less degenerative and life style related diseases.

The above mentioned fact would easily translate as being stuck to native and traditional food practices, an easy way to healthy life and healthier generations.

The indigenous wheat flour was replaced with white flour – refined flour (maida)
Cane, Palm and Date Jaggery – the unrefined sugars were replaced with processed white sugar
The unpolished black, red and brown rice varieties were replaced with polished white rice – devoid of many essential nutrients.

The list would go on and on … White might be synonymous to flawless cleanliness – but certainly not for healthy living and healthy off springs to extend stronger branches to consecutive generations. This level of survival of our society is due to the strong roots provided by our ancestors. But, healthy survival of our off springs lies in the changes we would adopt towards fighting obesity and junk food habits. We haven’t yet realized that junk is filled in our kitchen cabinets in its purest form – WHITE.

Let’s move on in our journey of healthy native rice based pancakes/dosais – this time – Kudavazhai Arisi Dosai.

  


  

The health benefits of this rice being, as per published articles –

  1. Rich in Anti-oxidants
  2. Fights diabetes
  3. Rich in fibre
  4. Fights intestine related ailments
  5. Aids in tackling constipation

  

Kudavazhai is considered to have been derived from two Tamil words –
Kudal – Intestine and Vazha – revival or to make live
In other words, the rice variety which aids in well-being of intestines and protects against related ailments was named Kudavazhai or Kudavaalai.
  

Dosais with Traditional/Native rice varieties

Kudavazhai Arisi Dosai/ Pancakes with Kudavazhai Arisi
  


  

Ingredients (makes approximately 15 dosais)

  


  

• Kudavazhai Arisi/rice – 1 ½ cups
• Karuppu ulundhu/black gram – ½ cup
• Vendhayam/fenugreek seeds – ½ tsp
• Kal Uppu/rock salt – ½ tsp
  

Method of Preparation


  

Making the batter-


  

1. Wash well Kudavazhai Arisi and black gram.
2. Add fenugreek seeds and soak overnight or minimum 6 hours in water
3. Grind well in a grinder or any blender
4. Once ground into a fine batter add rock salt and mix well or grind the rock salt in the end.
5. Leave the batter overnight or until fermented well.
6. Dosai batter is ready for use.
  

Making Dosai-

  

1.Heat dosaikal or the pancake pan on stove

2. Pour a ladle of batter and spread into perfect round pancakes – preferably thin

3. Pour droplets of gingelly oil on the sides of the Dosai for easy lift of pancake


  

4. Turn the Dosai to the other side and let it cook
5. Take out once done- remember it would take just about 30-50 seconds to cook a side of thin Dosai. If one keeps it longer, the texture of pancake would be lost.


  

6. Make Kudavazhai Arisi Dosai crisp or soft and enjoy with any Thuvayal/chutney. The Dosai comes out beautifully crisp that you can shape it yourself.

Kollu Dosai/Horsegram Dosai – Pancakes

 
Kollu Dosai/Horsegram Dosai


  
Horsegram has wonderful health benefits in reduction of cholesterol levels and aids as a relaxant during chilly cold weather and cold related ailments.

Different foods are prepared with Kollu, in different parts of India. In the south of India, Kollu Rasam (spicy soup), Kollu Paruppu (cooked lentil curry) are a few delicacies.

The most favourite and tastiest usage of Kollu might be the Horsegram Pancakes. They have an exclusive flavour and crispness unlike other millet based dosais. There is an important difference though. All other millets are replacements to rice and are hence used instead of rice. Here, Kollu or Horsegram is a lentil and is placed instead of black gram and is combined with Rice.

  

Horse gram can best be considered a reddish brown legume that is full of numerous health advantages. It can benefit with a number of health issues since it is a grain that contains a good as well as rich quantity of vitamins, proteins, as well as iron. Along with weight loss, it will help in lowering of excess fat through the body. Horse gram is full of B-complex vitamin and proteins. It will help in purifying menstruation as well as cures and helps prevent arthritis. The existence of adequate dietary fiber within the gram will help balance sugar glucose as well as blood pressure levels.Listed here are some health advantages related to horse gram. https://www.healthbenefitstimes.com/health-benefits-of-horse-gram/

 

  
The heat that Kollu produces in the body after consumption is something to be taken note of. Since it is a high heat-producing food, it is combined with rice which goes smooth on the system. Additionally, rice aids in easy digestion of Horsegram too. To tackle the heat of the lentil, thuvayal or chutneys made with shallots or tomatoes are a great choice.

Kollu Dosai is preferably a breakfast meal. All millet based/lintel based pancakes are suitably taken for breakfast to aid in easy digestion. One has to keep in mind that, all high fibre, power packed pancakes are low in calories compared to plain rice or wheat based foods, yet they take longer to break up in the digestive tract, which makes them more suitable as breakfast foods.

  

Kollu Dosai/Horsegram Dosai
  

comes out really crisp


  

Ingredients

  


  

  • idli Arisi/idlis rice – 2 cups
  • kollu Paruppu/Horsegram – 1 cup
  • vendhayam/fenugreek seeds. 1/2 tsp
  • kal Uppu/rock salt – ½ tsp

  
Method of Preparation
  

Making batter-
  

the light foamy paste is proof of light weighted idlies or dosais, exclusive to kollu


  

  1. Wash well idli rice and kollu/horse gram separately.
  2. Add fenugreek seeds to washed horse gram
  3. Soak both idli rice and horse gram overnight or minimum 6 hours in water in different utensils .
  4. Grind separately like the normal idli batter in a grinder or any blender. The stone grinder brings a beautiful foamy batter out of soaked horsegram.
  5. Once ground into a fine batter add rock salt and mix well or grind the rock salt in the end.
  6. Leave the batter overnight or until fermented well.
  7. Dosai batter is ready for use.

  
Making Dosai-
  


  

  1. Heat dosaikal or the pancake pan on stove
  2. Pour a ladle of batter and spread into perfect round pancakes – preferably thin
  3. Pour droplets of gingelly oil on the sides of the Dosai for easy lift of pancake
  4. Turn the Dosai to the other side and let it cook
  5. Take out once done- remember it would take just about 30-50 seconds to cook a side of thin Dosai. If one keeps it longer, the texture of pancake would be lost.
  6. Enjoy Kollu Dosai with any Thuvayal/chutney.
  7. Have a glass of Mor or Buttermilk that cools the system and aids in digestion.

  

  

Buttermilk: always to be had with Kollu Dosai

Take 1/4 glass of thick yoghurt, 3/4 glass of water, salt, fenugreek powder, asafoetida and blend well to a smooth liquid. This is the basic buttermilk. Buttermilk can be made flavourful with addition of coriander leaves, curry leaves, green chillies, mint leaves and so on. Feel free to add your own flavourful agents.

Karuppu Kavuni Arisi Dosai/Black Kavuni Rice Dosai/Pancakes – Dosai with Native/Traditional Rice Varieties of Tamilnadu- 1

Karuppu Kavuni Arisi Dosai


  

After black rice pudding or Karuppu kavuni Arisi payasam, my next wish was to try Karuppu Kavuni Dosai.

Dosais or Dosas are more flexible than making those perfect soft rice/millet idlies or fluffy cakes . Any grain base and lentil is enough to produce soft pancakes. While the western pancakes can be made with ground grain or flour alone, the South Indian Dosai has a protein lentil combined for the extra magical crisp or the soft spongy texture.

Hence, give us a grain and we can produce Dosai. Surprisingly very true. This was how the series – ‘Power Packed Pancakes’ with high fibre, nutrient rich millets came up. I am always awe-struck by the innovative culinary minds of our ancestors, who explored the combination of blackgram for the fermentation process of idlies and dosais – which aids in natural bacterial growth, than the additional usage of other external baking or steaming agents. That has given us- the generational followers, a clear way to explore a few more. Now, it’s time to try Tamilnadu style pancakes – the heavenly Dosais with various rices, which also seem to be common in southeast Asian countries.

So, join me again in the Dosai Journey in making a few more healthy pancakes, rich in anti-oxidants with the traditional rice varieties of Tamilnadu. To know more on the health benefits and payasam with black rice see – dosaikal- karuppu kavuni arisi payasam
  

Karuppu Kavuni Arisi Dosai/Black Rice Pancakes
  


  

Ingredients (makes approximately 15 dosais)

  • karuppu kavuni Arisi/black rice – 1 ½ cups
  • karuppu ulundhu/black gram – ½ cup
  • vendhayam/fenugreek seeds – ½ tsp
  • kal Uppu/rock salt – ½ tsp

  

Method of Preparation

Making batter-

  


  

  1. Wash well black rice and black gram.
  2. Add fenugreek seeds and soak overnight or minimum 6 hours in water
  3. Grind well in a grinder or any blender
  4. Once ground into a fine batter add rock salt and mix well or grind the rock salt in the end.
  5. Leave the batter overnight or until fermented well.
  6. Dosai batter is ready for use.

  

Making Dosai-

1. Heat dosaikal or the pancake pan on stove

2. Pour a ladle of batter and spread into perfect round pancakes – preferably thin

  


  

3. Pour droplets of gingelly oil on the sides of the Dosai for easy lift of pancake

4. Turn the Dosai to the other side and let it cook

  


  

5. Take out once done- remember it would take just about 30-50 seconds to cook a side of thin Dosai. If one keeps it longer, the texture of pancake would be lost.

6. Make Karuppu Kavuni Dosai crisp or soft and enjoy with any Thuvayal/chutney.

7. A dollop of nei/clarified butter is an extravagant addition to the beautiful Dosai.
 

Thinai Dosai/Foxtail Millet Pancake (Whole Grain Dosai Series)

Holiday Traveling and Holiday Baby-sitting have made this post a delayed one. I truly apologize for that.

Thinai or Foxtail Millet would be the last millet variety in this series for now. As soon as I get a few more left out varieties, I shall keep updating in the same category. Other names for foxtail millet include Italian millet, German millet, Chinese millet, and Hungarian millet.

 

 

One of the oldest cultivated crops. It was used in India, China and Egypt before there were written records. Millet is still used in eastern Europe for porridge and bread and for making alcoholic beverages. About 85 percent is used as foodgrain for humans and 6 percent for poultry. In the United States it is grown chiefly for hay. http://www.fao.org/ag/agp/AGPC/doc/Gbase/data/pf000314.htm

 

IMG_0180

 

So, to sum up –

The most common millets available at Jowar (Sorghum), Bajra (Pearl Millet), Ragi (Finger Millet), Korra (Foxtail millet), Sama (Little millet) and Variga (Proso millet). “They have huge nutritive value. Bajra and Sama are high on fat while Ragi has lowest fat. They are rich in Iron and phosphorus. Ragi has the highest Calcium content among all the food grains. They are rich sources in B vitamins especially in Niacin, B6, Folic Acid, Calcium, Iron, Potassium, Magnesium and Zinc,” explains Professor (Food and Nutrition) and Associate Dean, College of Home Science, ANGRAU, Dr. Anurag Chaturvedi.

There are myriad health benefits of millets. Regular consumption of millets is beneficial for postmenopausal women suffering from signs of heart ailments, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. They help women to combat occurrence of gallstones because they are rich in fibre.

They reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes because millets are rich in magnesium, which regulates secretion of glucose and insulin. http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/include-millets-in-regular-diet-say-experts/article3248602.ece

 

thinai idlis were equally good!

IMG_8032

 

Foxtail Millet or Thinai in Tamil could be one of the oldest millet varieties in Tamilnadu. We also have references of Thenum Thinai Maavum – Honey and Foxtail millet flour having been offered to Murugan, the God of the Tamils since olden days. Even today,  Murugan is offered ‘thenum thinai maavum’  in Pazhani Murugan Temple.

 

In South India, it has been a staple diet among people for a long time from the sangam period. It is popularly quoted in the old Tamil texts and is commonly associated with Lord Muruga and his consort Valli. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foxtail_millet

 

thinai dosai/foxtail millet pancake

IMG_0143

 

About goodness of Thinai/Foxtail Millet-

 

Foxtail Millet May Help Control Blood Sugar and Cholesterol

Foxtail millet (Setaria italica) is a common food in parts of India. Scientists at Sri Venkateswara University in that country studied its health benefits in diabetic rats, and concluded that the millet produced a “significant fall (70%) in blood glucose” while having no such effect in normal rats. Diabetic rats fed millet also showed significantly lower levels of triglycerides, and total/LDL/VLDLcholesterol, while exhibiting an increase in HDL cholesterol.
Pathophysiology. Sept 23, 2010 [Epub ahead of print]

http://wholegrainscouncil.org/node/7722/print

 

Millet consumption decreases triglycerides and C-reactive protein

Scientists in Seoul, South Korea, fed a high-fat diet to rats for 8 weeks to induce hyperlipidemia, then randomly divided into four diet groups: white rice, sorghum, foxtail millet and proso millet for the next 4 weeks. At the end of the study, triglycerides were significantly lower in the two groups consuming foxtail or proso millet, and levels of C-reactive protein were lowest in the foxtail millet group. The researchers concluded that millet may be useful in preventing cardiovascular disease.
Nutrition Research. April 2010; 30(4):290-6.

http://wholegrainscouncil.org/node/7722/print

 

Thinai Dosai/Foxtail Millet Pancake

 

IMG_0141

 

Ingredients (makes approximately 12-15 dosais)

  • thinai/foxtail millet – 3 cups
  • ulundham paruppu/dehusked black gram – 1 cup
  • vendhayam/fenugreek seeds – 1/2 tsp
  • uppu/salt – to taste
  • yennai/oil – to make dosais

 

 the foamy batter

IMG_8022

 

Method of Preparation

  1. Wash and Soak foxtail millet
  2. Wash and soak black gram and fenugreek seeds separately
  3. Soak the ingredients separately in enough water for a minimum 6 hrs
  4. Grind the black gram-fenugreek combination to a smooth and fluffy consistency
  5. Remove from the grinder/blender and grind the soaked millet to a fine paste
  6. Mix both with enough salt and leave the batter to ferment for 8 hrs or overnight
  7. In a warm country, 8 hrs is enough and one can mix the fermented batter and keep it refrigerated for further use
  8. Once fermented, always keep the batter refrigerated as it will go sour and get spoilt
  9. Make hot Dosais and serve with vengaya thuvayal /onion chutney or any chutney of choice
  10. After the dosais, more/buttermilk which is the diluted version of yoghurt with salt could be served for easy digestion.

 

IMG_0147

 

Kambu Dosai/Pearl Millet Pancake/Bajra Dosa (Whole Grain Dosai Series)

 

black gram and pearl millet

IMG_6875

 

Next on the list of healthy/protein rich dosais/pancakes is Kambu Dosai. Kambu in Tamil is Pearl Millet in English and Bajra in Hindi.

As mentioned in the previous Keppai Dosai Post, my daughter’s first intake after mother’s milk was finger millet porridge. Now, the goodness of these sprouted grains is that they are often used as weaning foods for infants and easily digestible foods for elders.
Health Benefits of Kambu/Pearl Millet

 

soaked….

IMG_6870

 

Scientific Name: Pennisetum Glaucum.
Pearl millet requires surprisingly low amounts of water to grow.

 

  1. Pearl millet is one of the very few foods that turns the stomach alkaline and prevents formation of stomach ulcers or reduces the effect of ulcers.
  2. The lignin and phytonutrients in millet act as strong antioxidants thus preventing heart related diseases.
  3. High amounts of magnesium present in pearl millet have been shown to control blood pressure and relieve heart stress. The high concentration of magnesium also helps reduce severity of respiratory problems for asthma patients and is also effective in reducing migraine attacks.
  4. It has a large amount of Phosphorus, which is very essential for bone growth and development.
  5. Owing to its fibre content it takes longer for the grain to move from the stomach to the intestines. This way, pearl millet satiates hunger for a long period of time and thus helps in lowering the overall consumption of food. This effectively helps in maintaining the blood sugar level constant in diabetes patients for a long period of time.

http://www.theresearchpedia.com/health/superfoods/health-benefits-of-pearl-millet

 

 

IMG_6885

 

 

 

  1. Celiac disease is a condition in which a person cannot tolerate even a small amount of gluten in his/her diet. Unfortunately, most of the common grains like rice, wheat, etch have gluten present in them. Millets are the only type of grains which do not have any gluten present. Thus this is suitable for people with celiac disease.
  2. Pearl millet contains a type of phyto chemical called phytic acid which is believed to increase cholesterol metabolism and stabilise the levels of cholesterol in the body.
  3. The high fibre content in pearl millet is also known to reduce the risk of gall stone occurrence.
  4. The grain is very digestible as such and has a very low probability of causing allergic reactions. Due to its hypo allergic property, it can be safely included in the diets of infants, lactating mothers, elderly and convalescents.

http://www.theresearchpedia.com/health/superfoods/health-benefits-of-pearl-millet

Kambu/Pearl Millet could be enjoyed in different forms and preparations. KambuIdli/Rice Cakes, KambuDosai/Pancakes, Kambang-koozh/ Kanji/Porridge, Kambang-Kali/Halwa, Kambu Upma and many more.
Kambu Dosai – Pearl Millet Pancake

 

 

 

Ingredients (makes approximately 12-15 dosais)

  • kambu/pearl millet/bajra – 1 1/2 cups
  • muzhu ulundhu/black gram – 1/2 cup
  • vendhayam – 1 tsp
  • uppu/salt – as needed
  • oil – to make dosai

 

Method of Preparation

  1. Wash and Soak all ingredients in enough water for a minimum 4 hrs
  2. Grind to a smooth batter
  3. Add salt to batter and leave to ferment for 6 hrs
  4. In a warm country, 6 hrs is enough and one can mix the fermented batter and keep it refrigerated for further use
  5. If in a cold country, leave it overnight
  6. Once fermented, always keep the batter refrigerated as it will go sour and get spoilt
  7. Make hot Dosais and serve with vengaya thuvayal /onion chutney or any chutney of choice
  8. After the dosais, more/buttermilk which is the diluted version of yoghurt with salt is served as coolant
  9. The buttermilk aids in digestion.

 

Kezhvaragu Dosai/Finger Millet Pancake (Whole Grain Dosai Series)

 

kezhvaragu/finger millet – the centre of attraction

IMG_5001

 

First in the series of Dosais would be Kezhvaragu Dosai. Kezhvaragu in Tamil, is Finger Millet in English and locally Ragi in Karnataka, the southern Indian state which is the largest producer of Finger Millet in India. It is also called Keppai in Tamil.

I give primary importance to Kezhvaragu/Ragi as it was one of the first foods of my daughter after mother’s milk at six months of age.

When my daughter was ready for her first worldly meal – she was fed Keppai Kanji or Finger Millet Porridge. The millet is soaked and sprouted, dried and milled first. This powder is mixed with milk and sugar or jaggery and boiled to porridge consistency. The warm porridge is best next to Mother’s Milk for infants.

 

health drink for children: keppai kanji – finger millet porridge

IMG_6746

 

 

It is rich in Amino Acids which are vital in normal functioning of body and are essential for repairing body tissues. Finger Millet contains Tryptophan, Threonine, Valine, Isoleucine and Methionoine amino acids. Isoleucine helps in muscle repair, blood formation, contributes to bone formation and improves skin health.

 

Kezhvaragu/Finger Millet

ingredients for dosai

IMG_5019

 

This is a beautiful orange colored grain. When powdered and mixed with milk or water in porridges or made into batter for pancakes, the color changes to somewhat ashy brown.

In packaged drinks called ‘ragi malt’ or powdered version available in the markets, it used to be in orange color, the synthetic colors added to give it the natural grain like color. But beware of those colorful health drinks. Kezhvaragu loses its color when grounded or mixed with milk or water.

Finger Millet, is cultivated in drier parts of the world – mainly in Asia and Africa. It has a distinct taste and is widely used in Southern Indian and Ethiopian dishes. It is easy to digest and does not contain gluten; people who are sensitive to gluten can easily consume Finger Millet.

 

Nutritional Facts
1. Kezhvaragu/Finger Millet contains an amino acid called Tryptophan whichlowers appetite and helps in keeping weight in control. Ragi gets digested at a slower rate thus keeps one away from intaking excessive calories.
2. Kezhvaragu/Finger Millet consumption helps in development of bones in growing children and in maintenance of bone health in adults. It keeps diseases such as osteoporosis at bay and could reduce risk of fracture.
3. It’s photo chemicals help in slowing digestion process and lowering absorption of starch.. This helps in controlling blood sugar level in condition of diabetes. In a study conducted in 2000, it was found that Finger Millet based diet helps diabetics as it contains higher fiber than rice and wheat.
4. Kezhvaragu/Finger Millet contains amino acids Lecithin and Methionine which help in bringing down cholesterol level eliminating excess fat from Liver. Finger Millet also contains Threonine amino acid which hinders fat formation in the liver, which brings cholesterol level of the body down.
5. It is a very good source of natural Iron. It also helps in relaxing body naturally. It is beneficial in conditions of anxiety, depression and insomnia. It is also useful for migraines.
6. It is rich in Amino Acids which are vital in normal functioning of body and are essential for repairing body tissues. Finger Millet contains Tryptophan, Threonine, Valine, Isoleucine and Methionoine amino acids. Isoleucine helps in muscle repair, blood formation, contributes to bone formation and improves skin health.
7. If consumed regularly, Ragi could help in keeping malnutrition, degenerative diseases and premature aging at bay.

 

Caution:
It is an extremely nutritious cereal and is very beneficial for maintaining a good health. However, its high intake could increase quantity oxalic acid in the body. Therefore, it is not advised to patients having kidney stones (Urinary Calculi).

 

Kezhvaragu/Finger Millet could be enjoyed in different forms and preparations. Keppai Idli/Rice Cakes, Keppai Dosai/Pancakes, Keppai Kanji/Porridge, Keppai Kali/Halwa, Keppai Upma, Ragi Cakes, Ragi Biscuits and many more.
Kezhvaragu Dosai/Finger Millet Pancake

 

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Ingredients (makes appr. 12-15 dosais/pancakes)

  • Kezhvaragu/ragi/finger millet – 1 1/2 cups
  • Ulundhu not split/dehusked black gram – 1/2 cup
  • Vendhayam/fenugreek seeds – 1 tsp
  • salt – as needed
  • oil – to make dosais

 

soaked

 

Method of Preparation

  1. Wash and Soak all ingredients in enough water for a minimum 4 hrs
  2. Grind to a smooth batter
  3. Add salt to batter and leave to ferment for 6 hrs
  4. In a warm country, 6 hrs is enough and one can mix the fermented batter and keep it refrigerated for further use
  5. If in a cold country, leave it overnight
  6. Once fermented, always keep the batter refrigerated as it will go sour and get spoilt
  7. Make hot Dosais and serve with vengaya thuvayal /onion chutney or any chutney of choice
  8. After the dosais, more/buttermilk which is the diluted version of yoghurt with salt is served as coolant.

 

one side of the story

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and the other side

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To Make Dosais/Pancakes refer – https://dosaikal.com/2011/08/14/basic-dosaidosa/

and serve with chutney of choice – refer – https://dosaikal.com/category/chutneys/

 

if one prefers dehusked black gram – go for it

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Note

  1. The black gram generally used is dehusked whole black gram. I prefer to use black gram with skin which adds to the nutrient value of the dosai.
  2. Be careful with the fermentation as the batter would become sour very quickly. Minimum 4 hrs is enough in a warm climate
  3. This is the plain dosai. If one prefers, grinding red chillies together or mixing coconut just before making Dosais can be a variation. Do not mix coconut before fermentation as coconut would be spoilt and make the batter spoilt too.
  4. Buttermilk is had after the Dosai as kezhvargi/ragi is supposed to be a heat producing grain and the onion in chutney and more/buttermilk act as coolants.
  5. Can make the Dosais thick or crispy thin as preferred.

Not to miss:

  1. Since Kezvaragu is supposed to be a heat producing agent for the body, it is always had with shallots/onion thuvayal/chutney.
  2. After a breakfast with onion chutney and dosai, buttermilk or diluted yoghurt is always served as a coolant.
  3. It is preferably or rather specifically adviced to have it only as breakfast and not for dinner as it needs more time to digest.

All nutritional facts adapted from http://naturopathycure.com/Health-Benefits-of-Finger-Millet-%28Ragi%29.php

ready!

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Power Packed Pancakes – Whole Grain Dosais!

 

power packed grains and lentils

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top – brown rice, yellow corn and black chick peas

bottom – black gram, green gram, finger miller and pearl millet.

 

Idlies and Dosais for Stress-free life/life style…

 

Why not start a series on different kinds of Dosais/pancakes? With less intake of White Rice recommended, the wide variety of whole grain Dosais would not only contribute to the overall well-being of the family, but also in relieving Stress in terms of what to provide the next morning as breakfast on the table… Healthier, Yummier and less stress on the Home Cook! Just a bit of pre-planning required of course.
  

Whole Grains and Lentils

The different grains and lentils grown in the southern part of India marks the usage of those grains in the form of Dosais. Check out the link for the recipe!
  

 

Kezhvaragu/Keppai – Finger Millet
Kambu – Pearl Millet
Makka Cholam – Corn
Vellai Cholam – Jowar/Sorghum
Varagarisi – Kodo Millet
Samai – Little Millet
Thinai – Foxtail Millet
Godhumai – Wheat
Muzhu ulundhu – Black Gram
Kollu – Horse Gram

  

Above are a few grains that are used in making Dosais and sometimes Idlies/steamed cakes too! But Dosais are comparatively easier, as Idlies have the risk of not rising well if the combination goes wrong or the fermenting ingredient is less or more. This list is apart from the usage of red rice and other lentils in making Dosais.

and this is varagarisi/kodo millet
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I might have left out a few here. Also, the photo display has only a few grains, those which are available with me at present.

The grains are not only used in their original form, soaked and ground; they are also used as powders, milled – sprouted or not sprouted. These powders are available in specific stores all over Tamilnadu.

These are 100% traditional foods. With today’s’ medical advancements proving their health benefits, the almost lost grains in the cities are slowly becoming power packed foods with soaring prices in the retail market.

The list of Dosais/Pancakes are all traditionally still part of South Indian cuisine – more specifically that I am sure of in Tamilnadu cuisine and in the homes of believers of traditional food.

The usage of grains may not only be in the form of pancakes, but in a varied forms like kanji/porridge, idiyappam/string hoppers, grain balls/urundai, kali/halwa and many more …

or the storable batters that end up as Idlies/rice cakes or Dosais/pancakes!
  

Stress-free Cooking with Dosais
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In today’s world, everyone is busy – an infant, toddler, pre-schooler or a school going kid, a teenager, youngster or an adult … ‘Busy’ is synonymous to ‘Life’. While ‘Stress’ stands for over-burden, who can categorize the stress level of each person?

Now, What is Stress?
an unmanageable kid – stress for a working mother,
a lazy employee – stress for a Boss,
heavily demanding boss – stress for a subordinate
troublesome daughter-in-law – stress for a mother-in-law,
complaining mother-in-law – stress for a daughter-in-law,
a serious patient – stress for a physician,
not so serious physician – stress for a patient,
And
not so caring wife – stress for a husband,
a self-centric husband – stress for a wife

The list is endless. This list may not categorize the true stress levels… Mostly the opposite or other extreme of these could also be stress factors.

Why talk so much about Stress? Having Good, Healthy Food and Serving Good, Healthy Food are stress factors attached to the Kitchen Cabinet – whoever is in charge be it male or female.

  

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I am one of those who takes her work serious and so the Stress too! It’s my feeling that Home is my Office, Kitchen is my Cabin and my work load in terms of a Chef without Hat at home is to provide Good, Healthy Food to my family.

So, whatever be my above mentioned stress, an unmanageable kid or a lazy caretaker, I want to do my Duty without much flaws! Especially, ensuring the best possible nutrients in homemade GOOD FOOD – ‘GOOD’ in its true sense – Stressless or Stressful!

Luckily for my family – COOKING is my Stress Buster!
  

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That is where I find Idlies – Rice cakes and Dosais – pancakes make my life stress free – of course with the tiny bit of stress making the batter before hand. But, stress free as they can be stored for even five days in the refrigerator. Every morning and evening, only a few minutes to make them, leaving the stress of making chutney or Sambaar only! That’s ok.. the side dishes are manageable and can be stored in the freezer too.
  

Frozen Batter
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Any batter for Dosais- pancakes (basic idli/dosai or lentil or whole grain batters) can be frozen. Make your batter, ferment it and freeze it in small portions or in two portions. Take out one portion and place in the refrigerator section overnight. Next morning keep it out for a few minutes to an hour. Or defrost in the morning. Batter is ready to make Dosais! What else do you want for a lazy weekend brunch or early dinner? Team the pancakes with chutney or left over curries too!

In fact, whenever we were traveling in Europe, with my daughter who was 3-5 years of age or sometimes with my septuagenarian mother-in-law who would prefer Dosais to sandwiches, I used to freeze a huge quantity of batter which would yield at least 30-40 Dosais enough for all for 3-4 days. Our favourite car trunk used to be filled with frozen food! After a long day’s tiring travel and touring and lunch with sandwiches, the thought of coming back to our kitchenette and having Dosais with thawed chutney or curry was such a soothing affair only South Indian tummies can explain!

In an apartment that wasn’t ours, in some of the most beautiful parts of Europe, in a kitchen that wasn’t mine, making our own Dosais, used to be a wonderful feeling, leave aside the work before and after… Washing the utensils and winding up the kitchen (that was not ours too) even during a holiday!
  

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But an important point to remember, dosaikal or the pan to make Dosais cannot be adjusted with any other pan! One needs to carry the same pan… Pans used for Dosais alone can make the best of Dosais without the batter sticking to pans.

I think back after a couple of years now and feel exhausted even at the thought of having done that for the three years of delightful tours in Europe. But, not letting my three year old sleep with only half or quarter tummy full or the whole family long for home cooked meal after a couple of days has been a Soothing Effect for my heart!

Have I become so much older that I feel exhausted even at the thought of it? But that’s not the issue. The fact is that dosai/pancake batters can be stored for long or frozen too! So flexible to maintain a healthy diet with minimal stress!
  

Breads, Parathas and Dosais

Different kinds of breads or pancakes for the western world;
Different kinds of parathas for northern India;
Dosais or pancakes stand for the South Indians!

1. these can be made from various ingredients – whole grains, lentils or a combination of these
2. some fermented and some non-fermented
3. unlike yeast or other baking-aid ingredients, basically black gram or dehusked black gram is used for the fermentation process
4. as kneading the dough is needed in both breads and parathas, here washing, soaking and grinding involves more time.. Time involved is more than the work involved with the aid of electrical equipments
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Unlike breads or baguette those need to be baked and kept on the breakfast table, the North Indian Parathas and South Indian Dosais taste best from a live kitchen with an on-the-spot chef who makes hot/incomparable stuff. Of course, they can also be made beforehand and stored in hot cases. But not as same as breads!

  
A Series

In the forthcoming posts, I shall try to post a few of the whole grain dosais or power packed pancakes as I call them. Some would be the soaked grain version and a few would be the powdered version as per stock at home.

  

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A gentle reminder

Now, if reading this article was a stress or one feels making dosais can be a stressful affair, do not worry! This free world is full of options – make your food yourself or buy or order it yourself, it is your decision. Anything ‘Stressfree’ is the need of the hour!!

But, if you decide that, making the power packed pancakes at home is going to be less stressful than reading this post of mine, just continue … the next few posts I promise would be truly a – Power Packed – Healthy series!