Unni Appam, A Tea Time Snack


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This snack is one of my daughters favorites. Unni appam ( means little appam) is a very traditional Keralean tea time snack. It is also made for special Hindu festivals.It requires a special pan with multiple round wells. I had one from India but the batter kept getting stuck to the bottom so found a non stick Ebleskiver pan. (Ebelskiver is a Danish round pancake.) It works perfectly.

Though traditionally made with rice soaked for a few hours and then ground, this entailed an extra step and more time than I had so used plain rice flour. It came out well.

Unni Appam
Ingredients:
2.5 cups rice flour
1.5 cups powdery jaggery (type of brown sugar)
1/4 cup water
2 tsp cardamom powder
2 tbsp Sliced coconut, diced ( or toasted coconut flakes)
2 tsp ghee
1 banana, mashed
Pinch of salt
Sugar as needed if you like it sweeter
1 tsp baking powder dissolved in little water

Oil as needed

Method:

Step 1:
In a small frying pan, add ghee and add sliced coconut. Brown well. Alternatively could substitute with toasted coconut flakes
Set aside.

Step 2:

Heat water and add jaggery to make a syrup. Allow to boil. Set aside to cool.

Step 3:
Combine rice flour, salt, cardamom pdr, cooled sugar syrup and toasted coconut. Add mashed banana and whisk thoroughly. Add little water to make a thick batter. Cover and set aside to ferment for 2-3 hrs.

Step 4:
Dissolve baking pdr in water and add to thick batter. Mix well. Heat ebelskiver pan and add oil half way up the wells. Heat at medium heat. Drop spoonfuls of batter into wells. Use a skewer or spoon to turn over the appams when they start turning brown. Drain on paper towel and serve with tea while warm. Store in a closed container.

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Tips:

~Instead of rice flour you can soak rice in water  for a few hours and then grind into a batter.
~When mixing batter, whisk well until somewhat light and frothy.
~Keep heat on medium or else the appams will brown too quickly and not cook in the center
~You can add black sesame seeds to batter as well.

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