Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Patholi- A Konkani Delicacy

There are many konkani dishes which I want to post but not able to do, because of the unavailability of certain things. Patholi is one among the konkani dishes which is considered special. I will tell you what makes it so special. Patholis are sweet rice dumplings steamed on Turmeric leaves!!. Now will you consider it special? Yes you have to!! I don't know who found out this recipe but he/she has to be appreciated for the idea!! This dish is commonly prepared during festivals like Nagara Panchami and Gowri Pooja. 

The importance of certain things is realized only in their absence. Why this saying?? this is because I never considered it special when I was in India. Only after not having it for more than a year, I realized its importance. The crave for eating Patholi increased day by day. My amma told me to try making it on banana leaves, as I couldn't find turmeric leaves. I found banana leaves in the frozen section. Thanks a ton for Goya!! Patholis made on banana leaves turned out delicious but still it missed the special flavors induced by turmeric leaves. Something is better than Nothing!!:)  Looking at the recipe you may think its lengthy but trust me its worth the effort! Hot Patholi with generous amount of ghee on it is something everyone has to taste once!!
To make patholi we need to prepare two main things- Rice batter and Choornu.

To Make Choornu:
  • Grated Coconut, fresh/frozen- 1 cup
  • Jaggery- 1/2-3/4 cup (Adjust according to how sweet you want)
  • Cardamom powder- 1 tsp
(I added 1 1/4 cup of grated coconut, as I and my husband like choornu very much. We ate little amount of it before it went on the rice batter:) So if you have a sweet tooth then you need to add more just as I did)


Take a small skillet and add jaggery to it. Turn on the heat and add little water (2 Tbsp) to it. Mix it well. Once the jaggery dissolves completely add the grated coconut and mix well. Let it sit on medium flame until the water evaporates completely. Turn off the heat. Add cardamom powder and mix well. Choornu is ready!!

To make rice batter:
  • Rice (raw)- 1 cup
  • Grated Coconut, fresh/frozen- 1/4 cup
  • Pressed rice/Puffed rice- 1/4 cup
  • Salt- To taste.
(Some people add little amount of jaggery to make the batter sweet. But i didn't add any. You can try adding it)

Soak the rice for 1-2 hours. Grind the soaked rice, grated coconut, pressed rice and salt to get a fine batter. Avoid adding water (if you add water, the batter becomes watery and will be difficult to steam it on the leaf. This step is very important. Make it as thick and fine as possible)


First wash the banana leaves. Wipe off the extra water on the leaf (it should be absolutely dry). If using frozen leaves, keep it out of the freezer for 30-45 minutes and then clean it (handle the leaves with great care as there are higher chances of the leaves getting damaged. If the leaves are too crispy then run the leaves over the heat for few seconds, which will make it softer and easier to handle).

Make small square or rectangular pieces of the banana leaf (You can cut it into small or big size). Keep in mind that it should fit well in your steamer).
1. Spread pieces of the banana leaves on a flat (spacious) surface. Put little amount of rice batter on it and start spreading it as shown in the picture below.

Repeat this process for other leaves, until the batter gets over.

2.Now start spreading the choornu in the middle of the batter, along its length (if its a square, no worries of the direction)

Repeat this for other banana leaves.

3. Now fold the leaves along the center, as shown below.

Pile them up in a steamer carefully and steam for 15 minutes.

Patholi is ready!!

Discard the leaf and serve it hot with generous amount of ghee:) You won't stop with one!!

I have few pictures captured by my Amma (MIL) back in India. She clicked these pictures for me. I am thankful for her for clicking all the pictures and my cousin who sent me the pictures and other family members who helped me with the photos of Patholi, made on turmeric leaves.

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