Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Ragi Otthu Shyaavige/ Idiyaappam And Vegetable Stew - Finger Millet Spring Hoppers And Vegetable Stew


Rice Shyaavige or Idiyaappam seasoned with lime and vegetables (Vegetable Sevai to be precise) is one of the  regular breakfast dishes served in feasts and other happy occasions like weddings. Shyaavige/ Idiyaappam can be prepared using the nutritious power packed Ragi too. Though Muddae Oota ( Ragi ball meal ) is available at many food joints in Bengaluru, freshly prepared Ragi Otthu Shyaavige still remains inside the thresholds of our homes.
Making this 'Holiday Special' is a fun activity for the entire family. Children love the 'pressing' part, and it gives them immense satisfaction to 'cook and eat ' food made out of their own tiny hands! My five year old grand daughter is very fond of Ragi Shyaavige. She 'pressed' the 'strings' out of the Shyaavige making Press for this post with great excitement. Her joy and laughter, and the twinkle in her eyes are greatest treasures I will cherish forever !
Ragi flour - 3/4 glass
Kala Chana flour ( Besan ) - 1/4 glass
Sesame oil - 2 tbsps
Salt - 3/4 tsp
Water - 1 1/4 glasses
 1. Bring water to a rolling boil adding 1 tbsp of oil and salt in a heavy bottomed kadai.
 2. Decrease flame and add Ragi flour and Besan together to the boiling water, and stir continuously.
 3. Keep stirring and cook the flour mixture till it comes together into a smooth ball.
 4. Add the remaining oil , stir and switch off flame.
 5. Cover the cooked flour with a tight lid.
 6. When the temperature of the cooked flour is comfortable enough to touch, knead the dough well.
 7. Make smooth cylindrical balls out of the dough, that can fit into the container of the Shyaavige Press.
 8. Steam the balls in a pressure cooker for 15 minutes without using the weight.

9. Switch off flame and allow the steam to subside.
10. Take out a steamed Ragi ball while it is still warm and place it into the greased container of the Shyaavige Press.
11. Ask the eager children to press out the Shyaavige/Idiyaappam by turning the handle and behold  the joy and excitement in their faces as the 'strings' come out of the press !

12. Gently remove the pressed Shyaavige/Idiyaappam on to another plate. Press all the Ragi Balls into individual Shyaaviges/Idiyaappams .

Top the fresh and nutritious Ragi Otthu Shyaavige / Idiyappam with fresh coconut gratings and enjoy with a delicious Vegetable Stew.

1. Mixed vegetables ( Chopped lengthwise) - 2 cups
2. Tomatoes ( Sliced) - 1
3. Sliced onion - 1/2 cup
4. Grated fresh ginger - 1 tbsp
5. Slit green chillies - 2
6. Curry leaves
7. Cinnamon - 1'' stick
8.Cloves - 6
9. Pepper corns - 6
10. Salt - 1 1/2 tsp
11. Coconut oil - 2 tbsps
12. Coconut milk - 2 glases
Grind 4 cups of fresh coconut gratings with 2 tbsps of rice flour into a smooth paste adding enough water. Add more water to the ground paste to make 4 cups of milk . Pass the Coconut-Rice milk through a sieve and keep the filtered milk aside. The rice flour gives a smooth and silky texture to the stew while cooking.
2. Heat one tablespoon of coconut oil in a kadai and add cinnamon, cloves and  pepper corns.
3. Add the sliced ginger, onion and curry leaves and saute till the onions start to brown.
4. Add all the vegetables ( I  used tender stalks of Kale leaves, Cauliflower, Potatoes and Zucchini) and saute till they are al dente.
5. Stir in salt and add the coconut milk.
6. Cook on low flame till the stew simmers.
7. Finally add chopped tomatoes and cook for only one more minute and switch off flame.
8. Add the remaining coconut oil and cover with lid to keep the flavours intact.

Enjoy the simple but delicious Vegetable Stew with the nutritious  Ragi Otthu Shyaavige / Idiyaappam.

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