For avani avittom, in both our families, its customary to make parupu vadai ( Chana dal fritters), Uppittu and Pal Payasam (Milk and rice kheer). Paruppu vadai is the popular masala vadai minus the onions/garlic in it. When vadai is made as prasadam/offering, onion/garlic is not included. We don't use onions in any cooking on those days. Also if any Brahmacharis(Bachelors) are there in the house, neiyappam is also made. Sine my husband is not very fond of pal payasam (Read he will taste only a teaspoon), I decided to make some pradhaman. Since chana dal is the star ingredient in both the other dishes, I went for godhumbai(cracked wheat). I am giving the measurements that I prepared for the day.
Paruppu Vadai/Aama vadai
Yields - 20 nos
Wash and soak the three lentils together for 1 hour along with the red chillies. Drain and leave it in the colander for few minutes so that the water is drained fully. Reserve 2 tablespoons of the lentils. Grind the lentils in the mixer to a coarse paste. You may not require water at all, since the lentils are moist enough. Stir in the reserved lentils to the ground batter. Add finely chopped chillies,curry leaves, salt and hing powder. Mix well. Don't allow the batter to sit for long. Its recommended to make the vadas immediately else it will drink lot of oil on frying.
Take a gooseberry sized batter and make into a ball. Use banana leaf or greased zip lock cover. Place the batter on it. slightly press it down using the palm. The shape will resemble that of the tortoise hence the name aama vadai.
Heat oil in a kadai. When it is hot, slowly slide the vadai into the oil. Take care not to splash the oil while sliding. You can make 4/5 in a batch depending on the frying pan and the amount of oil used. After 3 minutes or so, gently flip them so that the other side is also cooked. I follow my mom's method while frying vadas. When the vadas are half cooked, I drain them. Continue with the second batch and drain them too when its just golden in color. Then I re-fry the the first batch till it is golden brown. The two step process ensures more crispness and the inside too will be well cooked.
Uppittu is similar to Boli. The making process is almost the same. My mom uses moong dal for the stuffing and my MIL goes for chana dal. And I followed MIL. With some planning ahead, you can make sure, you are not left with excess of the filling/outer covering dough. I divide both the dough and filling into four parts and make equal no of balls from each so that everything gets used up and adjust the size accordingly to make up for the excess. The yield numbers may vary depending on the size you make. I got 20 nos.
For the outer cover
Wheat flour - 2 1/2 Cups
Turmeric = 1/2 tspn
Salt a pinch
Ghee/Gingely Oil - 4 tblspn
Water to make the dough.
Prepare the dough with all the ingredients mentioned above. You can add more oil/ghee to make it soft.Prepare the dough at least an hour before. The longer the dough sits, the softer the uppittus be.
For the filling
Chana dal/kadala paruppu - 3/4 cup
Powdered jaggery - 1 1/2 cups
Grated coconut - 1 1/2 cup
Ghee - 2 tblspn
Pressure cook chana dal till soft. Drain the cooked dal and grind it along with powdered jaggery and finally add grated coconut and pulse for few seconds to blend everything. Heat a kadai and a tablespoon of ghee. Tip off the ground mix into the kadai. Keep stirring till it turns dry. You can add some ghee while stirring to avoid sticking to the kadai. Leave it to cool.
I use banana leaves to make the uppittu. Moist your fingers with little ghee. Take a ball of the outer covering. Pat into a small circle and keep the filling on the centre and fold the edges to cover it. Shape into a ball again with the filling inside and again pat it with your fingers to a circle. Don't make it too thin. This is slightly thicker when compared to Boli.
Heat a tawa and place the banana leaf with the uppittu on the down side. After few seconds, you can slowly,lift the leaf apart. Cook both sides. Since we had added enough ghee/oil in the dough you may not require much ghee to cook them. Remove from the pan and fold it. This can be eaten by soaking in cardamom flavored milk, though it tastes good as it is.
Godhumai/Cracked wheat pradhaman
You can find godhumbai pradhaman recipe here. This time I used fresh coconut milk from a relatively big coconut and cracked wheat. In the earlier post, I used wheat rava.