Ragi/Kezhvaragu Puttu

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Steaming hot Puttu with sliced banana

Nutraceuticals is a new term, which means "functional food.” Nutraceutical is a substance that has a role or function related to nutrition or promotion of health by feeding.
While ragi is an ideal first food after an infant reaches at least 6 months of age, sprouting ragi increases the bioavailability of its iron to 88%, comparable only to mother’s milk (and 8 times higher than cow’s milk). The impact of advertising with all the cute babies is such that many people, not recognizing the value of their traditional homegrown, homemade food are choosing packaged infant foods. The media alone cannot be blamed-the use of pesticides made it a difficult choice for our ammas since they believed the packaged foods were safe for their babies.

Ragi is rich in calcium iron, protein and some rare nutrients such as methionine
digests easily from infancy through old age, and its nutrients are highly absorbed. Without always knowing the numbers, village folks have sprouted grains and beans for variety. When we lose these healthy habits, our traditional homegrown, homemade food needs a complete makeover. Ragi is a staple food of the poor. Sad but true, this traditional staple grain is rapidly falling out of fashion!
We discover new ways of preparing some of the old practices, as we learn more about the health aspects of the food we eat. Today a growing urban market seeks organic, sprouted ragi flour, ragi biscuits, etc.

Ragi/Kezhvaragu Puttu is a functional food rich in nutrients for breakfast - my contribution to Suganya’s Healthy Eats Event.

List of Ingredients:
  1. 1 cup Ragi/Kezhvaragu flour
  2. 1/4 cup water.
  3. a pinch of salt.
  4. 3 tablespoon grated coconut.
  5. 3 tsp sugar.

Cooking Procedure:
  1. Mix the salt and Ragi flour together.
  2. Add half of the water and mix well. Add the remaining water while mixing and make sure lumps are not formed.
  3. The filling in the puttu maker can be made in two ways :
Method (a)
Mix in the grated coconut to the puttu flour after step 3.

Take the puttu maker ( I have the one shown in pic), fill the puttu mixture upto the brim. Cover the lid of the puttu maker.
Layer the 1 tablespoon coconut first, then 3 tablespoons of puttu flour mixture, then again 1 tablespoon coconut, repeat puttu flour mixture, last layer finish off with coconut upto the brim. Cover the lid of the puttu maker.
4. Heat about three cups of water in a pressure cooker with the lid closed. When water starts to boil, keep the puttu maker on the nozzle of the steam vent of the pressure cooker.

5. Allow ten minutes to cook after steam arises from the lid.

6. Invert it slowly over a plate, slowly pushing out the puttu.

Serve with sugar and sliced banana or Kadala or Channa masala .
For folks who do not have the puttu maker: Put the puttu mixture in the idli plates and steam as would for making idlis.
Sugar and coconut can be increased according to preference. Add a teaspoon of ghee/clarified butter if needed.

Another type of Puttu maker

Ragi/Kezhvaragu Puttu- my contribution to Suganya’s Healthy Eats Event.


  1. Sounds better than rice flour puttu. Nutritious, indeed. Saradha, Thanks for your participation.

  2. Thanks Suganya, to me the taste is better than the rice flour puttu.Thanks for hosting the event.


  3. Kezhvaragu Puttu is not only healthy it is also delecious. As shown in the picture it goes well with ripe banana.

  4. Hi Sarada,

    This puttu goes straight to my one page cookbook - 1001 South Indian breads as a model recipe.

    Thanks for sharing it

  5. Ramki,
    Thank you for including the recipe in your cookbook.



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