Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Munthiri Kothu Recipe | Roasted Green Gram and Jaggery Balls | Kanyakumari Special Snack | Christmas Special Recipes

Munthiri Kothu is one of the traditional snacks we make in my hometown (Kanyakumari District) for Christmas. In Malayalam 'Munthiri' means grapes and 'Kothu' means a bunch. After deep frying, this snack tends to stick to each other and it resembles a bunch of grapes. Maybe, that is the reason behind the name 'Munthiri Kothu'. Though my mum is a teacher, she finds time to make many traditional snacks for Christmas without missing it. She always makes Munthiri Kothu, Adhirasam, Achu Murukku and Mullu Murukku in the beginning of half early holidays (a few days before Christmas) and stocks it up. Like mum, I wanted to make all the traditional snacks for Happy. I am in the process of learning all the snacks. I got this recipe from my mom-in-law and it turned out super awesome. Do try this for this Christmas and share me the feedback. 
Green gram/Cherupayar - 1 cup
Grated coconut - 1 cup
Jaggery - 3/4 cup
Cardamom/elakka - 5 to 6
Oil - to deep fry
For the batter: 
Raw rice (pacharisi) - 1 cup
Turmeric powder - a pinch
Salt - a large pinch
Water - as required 

1. Dry roast the coconut until golden brown and transfer it to a mixer jar. Along with this add the cardamom pods. Allow it to cool completely and grind it to a coarse powder. 
2. Transfer the ground coconut to a mixing bowl and keep it aside. Meanwhile, wash the green gram and allow it to dry completely. Then dry roast it in a pan until it turns brown. Roast it in a medium flame for a minimum of 8 to 10 minutes. Allow it to cool completely and transfer it to a mixture jar
3. Then powder the roasted greengram coarsely and the texture of the ground green gram should be similar to the rava(semolina). Add it along with the ground coconut mixture in a mixing bowl. Take the powdered jaggery in a pan.

4. Dissolve the jaggery in 1 cup of water by heating it. Then strain the impurities. Start boiling the jaggery solution and boil until it is thick like honey. (No need to check for string consistency)
5. Add the jaggery syrup to the powdered green gram and coconut mixture. Mix everything together and while it is still hot, make it into equal sized balls.
6. Allow the balls to rest for 30 minutes before frying. To make the batter: Wash and soak the raw rice for 2 hours. Then grind it to a smooth batter by adding enough water. Add the turmeric powder and salt. (I forgot to capture this step). Mix everything together and the batter is ready. The batter should be like dosa batter consistency. If it is too thin, then it will not coat the balls. If it is too thick, the outer layer will be very hard.
7. Take a ball, dip it in the batter and slide it into the hot oil. Cook it on a medium flame by flipping the sides for 3 to 4 minutes. The balls tend to stick and if required you can split it after frying too. Don't over crowd the kadai, just fry 3 to 4 in a batch if it is a medium sized kadai like mine.
8. Remove it from the oil and drain it on the tissue paper to remove excess oil.

Allow it to cool completely and store it in the air tight containers. This can be stored for a minimum of 3 to 4 weeks.
Points to remember:
  • For the batter, you can use readymade rice flour or roasted Idiyappam flour too. Just mix it with enough water, salt and turmeric powder.
  • The traditional method follows using the rice flour batter. However, you can use maida for the outer layer and it will not last longer. 
  • Instead of green gram, you can use split moong dal without skin too.
  • If you are not able to make the balls and it tends to crumble, then add a little more hot jaggery syrup and try making the balls.
Warm Regards,
Happy's Cook - Divya

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