MORU APPAM / KUZHI PANIYARAM (BUTTERMILK FRITTERS)
This is a snack I absolutely adore, soft and spongy on the inside and crisp and crusty on the outside. This dish gets its name because sour buttermilk (moru) is used in the batter. It is known as Moru Appam in Kerala but in Tamilnadu it is known as Kuzhi Paniyaaram.
One evening when I was pondering over what to make for tiffin (evening snack), I raided my fridge and found a big bowlful of Dosa batter, the batter was slightly sour. Sometimes inspite of refrigerating the dosa batter, it becomes sour. Once, the batter becomes sour the dosa doesn’t taste so good. I thought of putting it to good use by making moru appams. It’s like making the best out of something that would go waste.
Traditionally Moru Appam is made by soaking raw rice and Udad dal in the 3:1 consistency (3cups of raw rice and 1cup Udad dal) just as we do for the dosa batter and then adding on the other ingredients as mentioned below.
I made the Moru Appams with the leftover dosa batter. I would say it is the easier, faster and tastier way to make this dish.
Moru Appams are traditionally made in a vessel called the Appa Kaarai / Paniyaram vessel which has holes in it (like a muffin tray). You drop the oil in the holes and when the oil is hot, you can drop the appam batter into it. But for those who don’t have this vessel, you can deep fry in the frying pan as well.
|MORU APPAM / BUTTERMILK FRITTERS|
Left over dosa batter – 12-15 ladleful
Rice flour – 2 tbsps
All purpose flour(Maida) – 1 tbsp
Green chillies - 2 small finely chopped
Ginger - ½ inch piece grated
Toasted Cumin seeds (Jeera) - ½ tsp (Optional)
Asafetida (Hing) – ½ tsp
Curry leaves – 6-7
Fresh Coriander - 1 tbsp
Chopped coconut slices – 2 tsps (Optional)
Buttermilk (Moru) - ½ cup (Optional)
Salt as per taste
In a big bowl, add 15 ladlefuls of left over dosa batter, add the 2 tbsps of rice flour, 1 tbsp of Maida, 2 finely chopped green chillies, ½ inch ginger grated finely, Toasted jeera if you like, ½ tsp of Asafetida, curry leaves 6-7 torn and put into this mix, fresh coriander leaves chopped finely and added to this. I haven’t added the coconut slices to my mix here, but if you like the coconutty flavor go ahead and add it. Add the buttermilk and mix everything into a batter. The consistency should be like the dosa batter. Allow this to rest for about half an hour till the batter soaks in all the flavors added into it.
After this, heat the appa karai with some oil in all the holes, once the oil is nice hot pour the batter to ¾ level of each hole, the oil will be bubbly and frothy, wait for a minute or two and then with the help of a chopstick prick the appam and turn it around so that it can cook it on the other side too. Do this gently with a light hand, else the oil can splash and burn you. When you see that both sides are Golden brown as in the picture, remove them from the appa karai. Then fry the next batch. If needed pour some oil in the holes, wait for it to be heated and fry the next batch.
Enjoy the golden brown Moru Appams, soft inside and crisp and crusty outside with some white coconut chutney.
· In case you are using the sour leftover dosa batter then you can skip the sour buttermilk, otherwise, the mor appams will be too sour.
· Some people add a tablespoon of Maida(all purpose flour) for it to come out non sticky, porous and floating in shape like a ball in the oil but once we put the maida the Mor appams become oily (they soak in more oil). You will have to dab it well in a serviette before serving to remove the excess oil.
· If you don’t want to put finely chopped green chillies and grated ginger, you can grind them into a paste and add into the batter.