It is yet another famous tradional dessert famous in the Malabar region. Kinnathappam is served on all major occasions like weddings, house warming, baby shower...the list goes on.
Kinnathappam is a rice cake cooked in rich coconut milk, enriched with ghee, sweetened with jaggery and spiced up with cardamom. The texture is very soft and the color is deep brown.
'Kinnam' refers to the vessel or plate in which it is transferred to and 'Appam' is the rice cake.
I have always seen people buying it from bakeries and wondered how this soft and tasty appam is prepared and decided to find the traditional way of preparing it. The first reaction I got from all was ''ohh..that is very time consuming and takes a lot of heavy stirring.'' But I was still for it to learn a very authentic dish. Finally I got the recipe and here it is for my dear readers.
Coming to the preparation part it is very tedious but the end result just makes us forget the time taken to prepare this yummy rice cake. It requires a minimum of 3 people just to stir. And since it requires lot of effort it is usually prepared in bulk. Home prepared kinnthappams stay longer compared to the ones at bakeries. Here are the step by step preparation of Kinnathappam. Enjoy!!
¾ kg light + ¾ kg dark
Chana Dal (Kadala Paripu)
2 tbsp + 1 cup
Melt jaggery by adding 200 ml water. Filter it in a sieve to remove impurities. Let it cool.
Cook Chana Dal with one piece of Jaggery in a pressure cooker. Add water just enough so that it sinks and cook till 1 whistle (half cooked).
Grind the rice to a thin paste form.
Powder the cardamom along with 2 table spoon sugar and remove skin from the mixture.
Grate coconut and sqeeze to remove the first milk(Onnam Paal). Keep aside.
Add 200 ml warm water to the coconut and squeeze to remove the second milk (Randam Paal) and third milk (moonam paal).
This has to be continuously stirred using a long steel spatula. It has to be steel or a heavy duty stirrer as the mixture will thicken as you stir and it will be difficult to stir otherwise.
When the mixture starts thickening (it will take about 2 hours) add the first milk and cardamom powder. Take a small portion and hold it b/w your thumb and index finger, press it and pull. A strand consistency is formed.
After about 15 minutes add ghee to the sides of the vessel. Add the chana dal and mix well.
Add sugar at this stage as per your taste/or you feel the sweetness is not enough.
This is the tradional kinnam. Keep the kinnam/vessel/ any other dish ready
The mixture will start leaving the sides and start wobbling like a jelly and leaving the sides of the Uruli.
By this time keep the Kinnams /Brass vessels/ any dish ready with ghee smeared on it.
The right consistency is when you hold a small portion in between your thumb and index finger and roll, it forms a ball shape without sticking to your fingers.
Remove from fire and quickly transfer it to the vessels and flatten it so that it takes the form of the vessel.
Cool, invert it on a plate, cut and serve.