Sunday, March 8, 2009

Kummayam - a lentil and jaggery sweet dish

Kummayam
Azhwars (literally meaning immersed in God), are Tamil poet saints and ardent devotees of Lord Vishnu who lived between 6th and 8th centuries. There were 12 such Azhwars who showed their devotion through their emotion filled poems and hymns. All the Vishnu temples, where the azhwars sang their hymns are called the 108 Divya Desams (divine places - 106 in our physical world, and 2 more elsewhere!). These verses were later collected and codified by a Vaishnava scholar, Nadamuni, and are called Naalayira Divya Prabhandam (4000 divine compositions!)
The great azhwar, Vishu Chittar, also known as Periya Azhwar lived in th 6th century in Srivilliputhur. His love for the Lord was such that, in his hymns (known as Thiru Mozhi) he imagined himself to be mother Yashoda, nurturing Baby Krishna as a mother would do, by feeding, bathing, decorating and also reprimanding him for pestering the gopis. In one of his hymns, “Innamudhandri Ammantharen”, the sweet dish Kummayam finds a mention! The beautiful verse roughly translates to “…after having devoured kummayam with butter, and having emptied the curd pot, and also having destroyed the asuras – demons – you pose like an innocent baby in front of me. I doubt if you are my son and I am terrified to even feed you!”

Now coming to the dish, kummayam is a very simple dish prepared with only two ingredients – green gram dal and jaggery. Both are power houses of nutrients even on their own!
Green gram dal is next to soya, in protein content. It is a very easily digestible lentil and does not cause flatulence like other lentils. It is also rich in calcium and Vitamins B and C. Cooking does not destroy its protein content. Convalescents can easily digest and benefit from this dal. Banantis – women who have just given birth to babies – are served with a special diet, which contains green gram dal, for at least 40 days after the delivery.
Jaggery is a natural sweetener prepared from sugar cane without any additives. It contains iron, minerals and some vitamins. It is supposed to be a general health tonic and I have often heard that it purifies blood as well. 
Kummayam, food good enough for even Baby Krishna, is therefore  truely a very healthy dish for a baby above one year,..... and up to hundred years! 


Ingredients:

Split green gram dal (mung dal) – 1 cup
Jaggery (powdered) – 1 ½ cups
Method:1. Dry roast green gram dal till it becomes reddish in colour.
2. Allow to cool, and grind it into a very fine powder and set aside.
3. Dissolve jaggery in warm water and strain, to filter out impurities if any.
4. Add more water to the jaggery water to make 4 cups.
5. Mix the prepared flour in the cooled jaggery water in a heavy bottomed pan.
6. Cook on medium flame stirring all the time to prevent lumps.
7. When the cooked flour acquires a glazed look and starts leaving the sides of the pan, remove from fire.


Serve the kummayam with a drop of ghee to your kids as well as adults!
This dish goes to Padmajha’s Tasty Bites for Toddlers event.

20 Post your Comments:

Madhumathi said...

Kummayam is new to me..Thanks for sharing..It looks yummy..Nice entry to the event :)

Roshni Mitra Chintalapati said...

Kumma-yum-yum!

Ivy said...

It sounds very healthy for babies.

YOSEE said...

the history behind kummayam is very interesting. it is rare to find a nutritious item which also looks wonderful,tastes heavenly, very easy to make and has only two ingredients which can be found in any kitchen always.

Priya said...

Kummayam looks delicious, such a healthy dish, prefect entry Dibs!!

Usha said...

Sounds like a healthy and delicious sweet ! Thanks for sharing the recipe :-)

Cham said...

Never heard of this one, pretty good for kids!

Sonal said...

hey, it is very similar to rajasthani "moong ki dal ka halwa"..but this seems bit more healthy..even for the kids as no ghee ( which our marwari halwa will be completely filled of)

jayasree said...

Never heard of kummayam before. Kummayam in our local language is chunnambu/lime used to paint walls. :)

A healthy sweet.

LG said...

I am not sure about toddlers but I am sure to devour that cup of Kummayam :D Looks so good.

Dibs said...

Thanks for all your lovely comments! Jayasree - that's really interesting!!!!

S.R.Ramachandran said...

It is very tasty and quick to make. i like it very much. appa

Sukanya Ramkumar said...

Sounds so good. Nice recipe. YUM!

Shama Nagarajan said...

lovely dish

Sandhya said...

Kumayummmm! It sounds like Kummallam- the Tamizh word which is close in meaning to the Hindi Masti. (Can't think of a proper english translation) :)

High protein, high energy food! No wonder Baby Krishna was hyperactive.

bee said...

i would love to make this . it has two of my favourite ingredients.

Roshni Mitra Chintalapati said...

Hey! I finally acknowledged your awards and Meme! Thanks again!!

Chitra said...

i've seen the recipe of kummayam in many cook books but never tried.its very easy ,will sure make it for my kid:)thanks for sharing such a wonderful n healthy recipe:)

Varsha Vipins said...

U knw wat..in malayalam Kummayam means white paint kinda thing that we put on walls,..So I was kinda amazed hearing the name..:D
But this is an awesome simple cool dish..It could have been a great entry for RFRU..yum dish Dibs..:)

Kitchen Flavours said...

Awesome gift.....Thanks a ton....Iam elated...I just now got the courier...