KUZHI PANIYARAM/PADDU/GOLIAPPA is a spherical-shaped classic South-Indian Tiffin item that is typically made using leftover idli or dosa batter and cooked in a “Paniyaram pan”, a griddle with several concave dents or Kuzhis (holes).
They’re crispy on the outside and soft on the inside and they’re bursting with flavors of spice from the green chilies, tang from the sourness of the batter, the nuttiness of the coconut, and the crunch from the seasonings. At times, onions and grated veggies such as carrots are also added to the batter. It is usually served with chutney, molagapodi and sambar.
In this recipe, I’m making the kuzhi paniyaram batter from scratch as opposed to using the leftover idli/dosa batter. The composition of batter remains the same, that is Rice + Urad dal, but the differentiator here is the kind of rice used. I’m using a combination of parboiled rice and raw rice here, while in the case of idli/dosa batter only parboiled rice is used. Parboiled rice lends softness to the paniyaram while raw rice not only lends certain crispiness to the paniyaram, but also helps retains the crunch for a longer period of time.
Serve the paniyarams with one (or all) of the below-mentioned chutneys
THIS RECIPE SERVES 6
For the batter
- Raw Rice – 1 cup
- Parboiled Rice – 1 cup
- Whole or broken urad dal – 1/4 cup
- Salt – to taste
For the tempering
- Oil – 2 tsps
- Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
- Onions – 1/4 cup (optional)
- Coconut – 1/2 cup
- Green Chilli – 1 finely chopped
- Curry leaves – 1 sprig
If you’ve already got idli or dosa batter on hand, skip steps 1 and 2 and proceed from step 3 onwards. The recipe is for 3 cups of batter.
- Wash and soak both the rice varieties and the urad dal together in water for 45 minutes. (Note 1)
- Drain and grind to a smooth paste adding adequate water to arrive at a pouring consistency batter. I used about 2 cups of water. Ferment for 5 -6 hours.
- Heat the oil in a pan. Crackle the mustard seeds. Add the chopped onions, grated coconut, chopped green chilli and curry leaves, saute for 2 mins andd keep aside.
- Add the tempering and the salt to the batter. Mix well. (Note 2)
- Pour 1/2 tsp oil in each of the holes of the Paniyaram pan. When the oil is hot, pour batter into the hole until full and cook for 2-3 mins. Turn the paniyaram over with the help of a skewer and cook until done.
- Repeat step 5 with the rest of the batter.
- Serve hot with choice accompaniments.
- You could use any rice of choice and any combination thereof. I’ve used sona masoori rice, brown rice and they’ve all yielded delicious paniyarams.
- For added taste, you could add some grated carrots and chopped coriander to the batter.