- Submitted by Dahlia
(Rice Roti, Pol Roti)
Kerala is famous for its unique cuisine. Rice with a variety of sides is typically served for lunch and dinner. Breakfast is also quite heavy and elaborate. People relish a variety of preparations, most of which are made with rice flour. More importantly, each tiffin is served with a perfect side dish that compliments it. There is never a compromise on the tasty breakfast for Malayalees. These days in cities no one has the time or patience to make or enjoy such varieties. There are families who have even forgotten the traditional dishes. I hope this post will bring back childhood memories for many.
Taking about rice roti varieties, one is the popular ari pathiri which I have already shared before, There is another variety that is thicker than the pathiri. Pathiri is soft and made similar to bhakri. On the other hand, orotti is made with rice flour and grated coconut. It is rolled out with hands and hence is thicker. It is often served with some spicy curry like chicken curry, mutton curry or egg curry. This is also popular in Kanyakumari district of Tamil Nadu and in Sri Lanka, where it is called the Pol Roti.
The recipe given below is the simplest and the most commonly made one. Some people like to spice up the orottis by adding finely chopped shallots and cumin seeds while making the dough. This is also sometimes served with a cup of tea without any curry. Kids usually enjoy plain rotis and hence I prefer to make it that way. Another variation is the sweet orottis in which some sugar is added while making the dough. My grandma often made it this way when we were kids. We could just pick a piece and keep munching without any side dish. Please do try out the basic version and also the different variations. I am sure you will enjoy it.
This Kerala stye of orotti is also called as malabar orotti or thalasery orotti.
Recipe for Orotti
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes
- Rice flour- 2 cups
- Water- 1½ cups
- Grated coconut- ½ cup
- Salt- to taste
- Oil- for greasing
- Take the water in a small pot and boil it. When the water is boiling, reduce the heat to low. Add the salt and grated coconut.
- Gradually add the rice flour while constantly mixing with a wooden spoon. The rice flour thickens quickly and forms a mass. Switch off and let the mixture be covered for 5 minutes.
- After about 5 minutes, the mixture would be warm enough to handle with bare hands. You need to knead the dough when the mixture is warm.
- Knead to form smooth dough. Wet your palms with water while kneading to make it easier.
- Pinch out a lemon sized ball. Make it smooth by rolling between your palms,
- Now you need to roll it out. You cannot roll it like you do with regular rotis as rice flour tends to break. To roll out you can use a Ziploc bag or plastic sheet. Another choice is to use a clean wet cloth as I have done. Keep the ball in the center and press it with your fingers to about 4-6 inch round shape. Orotti is usually made thicker than regular rotis.
- Heat a pan and place the rolled out roti. Drizzle some oil, cover with a lid and cook for about 2 minutes on one side.
- Flip the orotti to cook the other side for another minute or so.There will be tiny brown spots that appear on the cooked side.
- Remove from the pan and enjoy with any tasty curry.
Detailed Steps for making Orotti
To make orotti, you just need a few basic ingredients - raw rice flour, freshly grated coconut and hot water. Take the exact measure and keep it ready.
Bring water to boil in a small pot. Reduce the heat to low and add the salt.
Also add the grated coconut.
Gradually add the measured rice flour while constantly mixing.
The rice flour absorbs all the liquid almost immediately.
Switch off and keep it covered for 5-10 minutes.
After some time the mixture cools a bit. Knead the mix when it is still warm to form a smooth dough.
Pinch out a lemon sized ball and smooth it by rolling between your palms. Take a clean cloth, wet it and squeeze it. Place the dough ball on the moist cloth.
Press it with your fingers to to form a circular shape as shown below. It doesn't have to be very thin.
Heat a non stick or cast iron pan. Carefully remove the rolled out roti from the moist cloth and place on the pan.
Drizzle some oil around the edges and cover with a lid.
Cook for couple of minutes on each sides over medium heat. Tiny brown spots that appear on both sides. Remove from the pan and serve with some curry of your choice.
- As said before, orotti is typicall served with chicken curry, egg curry, beef masala, mutton curry or with any spicy curry.
- It tastes best when accompanied with a cup of black tea (kattan chaaya).
- Sri Lankans enjoy this with coconut sambol.
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