We prepare Patholi on Nagara panchami being for the first time in the year. On this day itself we offer the turmeric leaves dish as prasadam to god and then we often prepare it for tiffin as well. It is also a must in the menu for Ganesh chathurthi for us.
This is a rice based dish out of which a batter is made. This batter is stuffed in turmeric leaves and steamed in either cooker or a wide bowl. Although it is time consuming to make, it is very tasty and is considered a delicacy. Not too many people prepare this well and given that is a little complicated, give yourself time when you prepare this. Also, I have observed that some people may not like the dish since they may not relish the aroma of turmeric leaves. But I have loved the aroma and the dish itself since childhood.
Anyway, here goes the recipe.
What you need to have:
1. Raw rice – 1 cup
2. Puffed paddy – 2 cups
3. Fresh coconut – 1 cup
4. Molasses – A handful
5. Turmeric leaves – A few
Fresh Turmeric leaves
Main ingredients of Patholi batter
1. Fresh grated coconut – 2 cups
2. Molasses/Jaggery – 3/4 cup
3. Puffed paddy powder – 1/2 cup
Ingredients of stuffing
What you do with what you have:
1. Wash and soak raw rice in water for about 2 hours. Soak puffed paddy also in water separately for about 30 minutes.
2. Grate coconut and set it aside. Crush the Molasses as well.
3. Grind soaked rice, puffed paddy from step 1 and coconut and jaggery from step 2 in mixer. Add water in in steps to ground very fine and upto a pouring consistency. The dough is as shown in the image below.
Ready Patholi batter
4. Mix the grated coconut, puffed paddy powder, jaggery with your hand and set it aside. It is the stuffing as shown in the image below.(puffed paddy powder is added to the stuffing for an extra flavour and also to thicken it, for not to allow the Jaggery syrup to flow out of the stuffing.)
5. Wash and cut the tip and bottom of the turmeric leaf and spread the batter on it. Place the stuffing from step 4 in the middle of the leaf as shown in the image below. They are now ready to be steamed.
Patholi batter being spread on Turmeric leaf
The stuffing being placed in the middle
6. Steaming procedure: Place either cooker or a idli vessel on the flame with enough water in it. When the water starts boiling place the folded turmeric leaves filled with patholi batter in it in a row and once it starts steaming strong, then one may place another row upon it so that it is cooked simultaneously. Time taken to cook is about 45 minutes since it is stuffed. The cooked patholi is as shown in the image below.
Patholi being steamed in the idli vessel
Cooked Patholi in Turmeric leaves
Some people enjoy Patholi with pure ghee and honey too.
What to remember:
1. You may be surprised to know what is this special item Puffed paddy. This is one of the few products which we get from paddy. Most impoprtant among them is the rice . then comes the others like the Beaten rice (poha), Puffed rice (used in Bhel Puri), Puffed paddy which is used for Panchakajjaya (prasadam) in many temples. The powder is also used to prepare laddus which i will put up shortly.
2. I have used puffed paddy for the outer batter. Some people use Beaten rice too instead of Puffed paddy. The proportion of beaten rice is different from the puffed paddy . Both are used to get a smooth consistency to the dish. Puffed paddy is readily available in any of the shops here in india. So also the powder used in the stuffing is readily available.
3. Clean puffed paddy well before using to get rid of the paddy husk. Well, actually even the powder used in the stuffing contains husk – so the alternative is to make your own powder from puffed paddy. Just clean the puffed paddy and warm up a bit and powder it in the mixie which would be better of. I ofcourse did the same thing.
4. There is another version of this dish – Patholi made from Maida batter which I will post later on.
How long it takes: 90 minutes
Number of servings: 6-8 people (30 patholi)