Aappam or hoppers is another popular South Indian breakfast variety besides Idli and Dosai. It is a bowl shaped pancake crisp on the sides and soft at the centre. Made with fermented rice batter, patience and practice goes into the making of Appam. It is typically served with sweet coconut milk, mutton paya or vegetable kurma. Amma usually served them with coconut milk with sugar and flavored with cardamom. The coconut milk is poured over the Aappams and then eaten when completely soaked.
Today`s recipe for Aappam is my version with the addition of Aval/Poha. Make Aappams and serve with sweetened coconut milk for a slow and relaxing weekend morning for this combination tends to make you lazy and sleepy.
- 2 cups rice ( Sona Masuri)
- 1 cup Aval /Poha
- 1/2 cup Idli batter
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 cup thin third pressed coconut milk.
- Soak the rice and aval for 4 hours. Drain the and grind it to a fine paste adding enough water.
- Transfer to a vessel which can hold double the quantity of the ground batter ( the batter will rise to double its quantity once fermented).
- Mix in the idli batter, baking soda and salt. Allow to ferment at room temperature for at least 6 hours~ I allow it to ferment overnight in the oven with the light on.
- The next day add the coconut milk combine well to get a thin consistency. Add water if necessary to get to the consistency shown.
- Heat the appachatti ( I use the non-stick wok chatti, if you do not have one use your kadai) . Pour a ladle of batter OR approximately 1/4th cup of batter into the center and gently swirl the chatti/kadai around such that only a thin layer of the batter covers the sides and a thick layer collects at the bottom( What has not stuck to the walls of the kadai will pool to the bottom ).
- Cover with a lid on medium heat for about 3 minutes or till the edges have become golden crisp and the center is soft, spongy and cooked. Gently run a spatula under the Appam to release it from the kadai and serve hot.
To prepare coconut milk ~ Put the grated coconut in a blender, add warm water and grind smooth. Cover a bowl with a sieve and pour the ground coconut paste into the sieve/cloth. Squeeze the coconut to extract as much liquid as possible into the bowl. The first pressed extract is the thick milk. Repeat the process two more times. The second and third pressed milk is the thin milk. The coconut milk can be stored in the freezer to be used later. Adjust the water quantity, to change the consistency and thickness of coconut milk according to your needs.
Sweetened Coconut Milk: Combine the first and second pressed milk with sugar and 1/4 a teaspoon of cardamom powder.