Kerala style pidi
Pidi is one dish which takes several attempts to master. It requires some amount of trial and error before you learn to make the Perfect Pidi. For a sweeter version of Pidi, check out the recipe for Paal Pidi.
Avalos Podi – 2 cups
Roasted Rice Flour – 1 cup + 2.5 tbsp + 1/2 tbsp for sprinkling
Sliced Shallots/Pearl Onions (Kunjulli) – 10 to 15
Curry Leaves – 2 sprigs
Grated Coconut – 1 cup
Crushed Coriander Seeds – 1 tsp (Alternatively, use 1 tsp Coriander powder)
Salt – to taste
Water for kneading – 6 to 7 cups approx (Varies with the Rice Flour used)
Water for boiling the dumplings – 8 cups approx
Water for thickening – 1/2 cup
Crushed Cumin (Jeerakam) – 1 tsp (Alternatively, use 1/2 tsp of cumin powder)
Coconut Milk – 1/2 cup (optional)
Rolling the Dumplings
Fill a deep pan with around 15-16 cups of water. Add shallots, curry leaves, grated coconut, crushed coriander and salt to taste. Bring everything to a boil.
When the water comes to a rolling boil, transfer 6 to 7 cups of water to another pan for making the rice dumplings.
Switch off the stove and keep the remaining water covered.
In another pan, add little salt and mix the avalos podi and 1 cup rice flour.
Slowly, add hot water to the avalos podi and rice flour and combine with a spatula. When the heat is manageable, slowly knead everything with your hands to form a soft and smooth dough.
If the dough is dry, the dumplings will break. So you will need to add more water. If the dough is sticky, you will need to add more rice flour.
Using your palms, start making small cherry sized balls with the dough. Dip you hands occasionally in warm water while rolling the dumplings to prevent it from drying out. Place the dumplings on a plate and sprinkle little rice flour to prevent the balls from sticking.
Cooking the Dumplings
Once all the dumplings have been prepared, again bring the remaining water in the first pan to a rolling boil.
Slowly, add the dumplings to the boiling water. The water should be boiling or else the dumplings will break. Do not stir the dumplings. Allow it to cook.
When the mixture begins to boil again, gently stir the dumplings. Reduce heat and simmer the dumplings for around ten minutes, stirring occasionally.
To thicken the mixture, combine grated cumin and 2 tbsp rice flour in 1/2 cup of water and add it to the pan. Stir gently for a few minutes.
When the mixture has thickened, add 1/2 cup of coconut milk. This will enhance the taste but is optional. Stir and remove from heat.
Serve immediately with Chicken Curry.