Its always an endeavor to cook with as less oil as possible, with as much fiber as possible, with as less calories as possible, with as much flavor as possible and so on and so forth. There is always a trade off here and with the mounting instances of lifestyle related diseases and its only getting more and more difficult to make this possible. My aim is to not get too off the handle and restrict me and my family, but more to moderate the measure of any intake and yet to make it more interesting by substituting rice with cracked wheat, oats , bulgar wheat, quinoa, cous cous etc. Here I take my traditional Pidi Kozhukkatais made with raw rice and make a healthier version of it using cracked wheat. The results were astoundingly delicious as any dish gets masked with Hotel Sambar or Tomato Chuthey so, one never really knows!!!
1 1/2 Cups Cracked Wheat.
2 1/2 Cups Water.
1/3 Cup Toor dhal.
Handful Urad Dhal.
3 Green Chillies.
3 Tbsp Dry/Fresh Coconut. (Optional)
2-3 Red Chillies.
- Soak the urad dhal, toor dhal and the green chillies in water for about 2-3 hours. The Urad Dhal is mostly a binding agent for bringing the kozhukattais together.
- If the cracked wheat is a little too coarse for you, pulse it slightly. Set aside.
- Grind the urad dhal, toor dhal and the green chillies using little water, to a smooth paste. Set aside. Measure out the fluid (apprx 1/2 cup).
- To this ground paste add enough water to bring it to 2 1/2 cups measurement. Set aside.
- Take your favourite kadai and splash in some oil. When hot, add the ingredients mentioned under “Seasoning” and mix away until they are lightly roasted.
- Now bring down the flame to a medium low and add the ground paste. Take care to see that it does not catch the bottom.
- Immediately add the measured water + paste (2 1/2 cups) and allow it to mix in with the seasonings.
- Now add sufficient salt and wait until the water just starts to boil.
- Bring down the heat and slowly add the pulsed cracked wheat and the dry coconut.
- With a whisk bring it together until its almost resembling a thick upma.
- Switch off the flame and allow to cool for a few minutes.
- When its a little more easy to handle, make little balls by holding them inside your palm and closing your fingers over the mass…..thats where the name comes from…”pidi”!!!
- Grease the idli plates and place all the kozhukattais on them all ready to be steamed.
- Keep in the pressure cooker without weight , until you get heavy steam. Then bring it down to sim for about 6-8 minutes and switch off.
- Serve with Molagai Podi or Chettinad Thakkali Chutney.