Friday, July 24, 2009

Kozhukattai (Modak)- steamed rice dumplings with coconut, jaggery and cardamom filling

Undoubtedly my favorite dumpling. Early memories of this dumplings where during Ganesh Chaturthi (this is made as an offering to the elephant head Hindu god -Ganesha) when my cousins and me used to wait eagerly for the prayers to finish so that we could have the fragrant dumplings.

Best eaten steaming hot the tender rice skin breaks, gooey coconut and jaggery filling with fragrant cardamom.

Rice Shells
Rice (Ponni or Thai Jasmine)- 1 Cup
Vegetable oil - 2tsp
Coconut Filling
Coconut grated - 2.5 cups
Jaggery - 1 cup
Cardamom pods- 1tsp

1.Soak the rice overnight in 2 cups of water. Rinse and make to a fine puree to achieve a flowing consistency. Check the consistency by making a pattern on your kitchen table.The batter needs to be smooth.
2. Place the batter in a pot add two teaspoons of vegetable oil and cook over a slow flame stirring continuously. At this stage the rice flour will start to form lumps on the wooden spoon, remove the lumps and keep stirring till the batter forms on big irregular mass.

3. Place the cooked rice mixture on a damp cheese cloth or any soft cloth and knead it gently to form a dough while still warm.Keep the dough covered.

Coconut Filling (Thengai Puranam)

1.In a pot place 1 cup of jaggery and 1/4th cup of water and melt it slowly over a slow flame. Keep stirring continuously till it reaches a single string syrup consistency and strain though a fine mesh strainer.

2.Add the freshly grated coconut to the jaggery syrup and cook over a slow flame till it thickens. Keep stirring and clean the sides of the pot.
3. Once the mixture thickens, add the powdered cardamom and switch of the flame and stir well. The coconut filling is ready.Allow it to cool completely by spreading it thin on a pan.

Form small rounds with the rice dough and flatten it in your palm and thin down the sides with your thumb and index finger. (This takes practice)Place the filling in the center and fold it to form a Kozhukattai or Modak.

Steam it for 7-8 minutes and serve hot.

If you like to know more about Dumplings please refer to Andrea Nguyen's book Asian Dumplings

Healthy eating makes all the difference. Eat well.


Kitchen Flavours said...

Oh that filling...sounds yum...

from my motorhome to yours said...

these look amazing and so easy love the step by step photos!, you have a new follower, pam

Alessandra said...

Thank you for your wonderful blog, really inspiring.

I have recently discovered cardamom, what a sweet aroma!

Alessandra said...


I you have time visit me here


Srivalli said...

Thats a lovely description for making these!

camelia said...


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Srivalli said...

Shyam, nice kozhukattai, if you are interested to be part of Indian Cooking challenge, please mail me @, I will send you the details...

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