Chembanda Reshma Bheemaiah is a real ambassador for Coorg. She runs a home stay, where she invariably serves Kodagu food to her guests.
For breakfast, it is paputtu, thalayaputtu and otti. For lunch and dinner, it’s noolputtu, belath neer, kadambutu and non-vegetarian dishes prepared in Kodagu style.
Reshma says: “It feels so nice when visitors ask me for the recipes and write them down. They also want to buy the ingredients here in Coorg. I notice that popular items to take back are kachampuli, black masala, and paputtu thari, along with wine and spices.”
Reshma shares her recipe for a popular sweet- Chikklundé.
Chikklundé is one of the unique Kodagu sweets which is enjoyed by kids and elders alike. It is normally prepared during festive occasions, and also during the wedding season. Chikklundé has pride of place in the goodie hamper which a bride carries with her when she returns from her mother’s house.
The main ingredient for the filling is puffed rice (nell pori). To make this puffed rice, paddy (unhusked rice) is spread on the floor for a day to gather some moisture, then roasted in a clay pot over a wood fire. The heat drives the moisture in the grain out, causing the rice to puff up, much like popcorn.
Chikklundé (Sweet puffed rice dumplings)
- Puffed rice 750 Gms
- Brown sesame seeds 25 Gms
- Roasted gram (channa dal) 50 Gms
- Grated coconut 75 Gms
- Salt to taste
- Jaggery 100 Gms
- Oil for frying
- Turmeric powder ¼ teaspoon
- Maida(refined white flour) 150gms
- Water for the batter
- The proportion of puffed rice (nell pori) to the other ingredients is normally 3:1
- Sun dry the puffed rice and crush or grind coarsely.
- Grind the grated coconut, sesame seeds and roasted gram coarsely, adding a pinch of salt.
- Melt the jaggery, strain it to remove dirt particles and reduce to make a thick syrup.
- Mix the ground puffed rice and the rest of the dry ingredients together.
- Add the jaggery syrup which will bind the ingredients, and mix well.
- Using your hands, and pressing firmly, shape the mixture into small balls.
- Meanwhile prepare a batter with the maida, turmeric powder, and as much water as needed to make bring it to a coating consistency.
- Dip the dumplings in the batter and deep fry till they turn golden brown.
Deepthi and her husband, Koothanda U. Aiyappa are a charming young couple who are proud of their Coorg heritage.
Deepthi is a passionate cook, and an avid sportswoman who played hockey for Bangalore University. An MBA in Marketing and Human Resources, she has worked as a Senior Director for a UAE based company in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.
Deepthi believes in cooking healthy, delicious food, and likes to use a range of herbs and spices from various cuisines for their flavour, as well as their health benefits.
Deepthi’s Coorg Lamb Masala
- 1 kg lamb
- 2 teaspoons oil
- 5 teaspoons pepper
- vegetable /meat stock – 2 cubes dissolved in 400 ml water.
- 4 large onions
- 4 tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon garam masala (preferably Everest brand)
- pinch of sugar
- fresh coriander leaves
- oregano fresh/dried
- 6 cloves
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 teaspoon shahi jeera
- 2 birds eye chilly (parangi malu)
- 2 dried long red chillis
- 1 teaspoon white poppy seeds
- 2 teaspoons ginger- garlic paste
- 1 tsp paprika
- pinch of turmeric
Method of preparation:
Wash fresh lamb meat and cut into medium pieces. In a cooker first fry the meat on both sides with a little oil till the meat firms up and begins to brown.
Add 4 tsps pepper and vegetable/meat stock along with water till the lamb is immersed in the stock. Pressure cook on high flame for five minutes and then on low flame for ten minutes. Once the meat is tender and well done, keep it aside.
In a pan, using very little oil, fry finely chopped onions until they turn golden brown. Keep aside. Now fry the aromatics till aroma releases. Blend fried onions and aromatics in a blender till a smooth paste is formed.
In a deep pan, add one teaspoon of oil along with the ground paste and tomato puree. Add a pinch of sugar and cook, stirring continuously for 15 minutes till oil releases from the edges. Now add the cooked meat along with the stock and let it simmer for few minutes till the gravy thickens.
Add 1 tsp of black pepper powder, a pinch of salt and one teaspoon garam masala powder. Add finely chopped fresh coriander leaves and dried/ fresh oregano leaves for flavor.
Serve with rice cakes (Paaputtu)
- 2 cups thari (broken rice)
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups milk
- 1 cup fresh grated coconut
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- salt to taste
- 2 teaspoons ghee/ clarified butter
Use plates with reasonable depth for this recipe. First apply ghee on the plate and spread evenly. Now add the thari and water. Let it sit for 15 minutes. Add the milk, sugar, salt and fresh grated coconut.
Use a pressure cooker without lid and cook on medium flame for 20 minutes or till the paaputtu is firm.
Serve this delicious paaputtu with Deepthi’s Coorg Lamb masala.
Nellira Liril Machaiah , a certified soft skills trainer, currently heads the Learning and Development Function at Infinite Computer Solutions, Bangalore. She is interested in exploring life’s mysteries, in pursuit of finding life’s purpose!
Liril shares her grandmother Gubbi Subamma’s quick and easy recipe for pancakes. These pancakes are perfect as a snack with a cup of tea, or as a dessert. Enjoy them the old fashioned way, or dress them up with chocolate sauce if you like.
- Maida – 1 Cup
- Coconut – ½
- Sugar to taste
Method of preparation:
- Put the maida in a bowl and mix it with water until it gets to the consistency of dosa batter. Set aside.
- Grate the coconut into a bowl, add sugar to taste and mix well.
- Heat a flat pan or griddle, lightly grease it, then pour enough of the batter to make a thin pancake by swirling the pan.
- Cook on low heat until it is done. Cook on one side only.
- Once it is cooked, flip onto a plate and let it cool. Repeat until all the batter is used up.
- When they pancakes are all done and cooled, place a spoonful of the coconut mixture in the centre of each one and fold up the sides to make a roll.
- Keep the lighter side of the pancakes on the outside for a more delicate appearance.
- And your yummy pancakes are ready to eat!
Thirtha Uthappa, daughter of Kakamada Uthappa, a jeweller, is following in the footsteps of her father. Thirtha says: “Jewellery has always been my passion, and that is what made me leave my corporate life of 11 years and start my own line, Samaara Jewellery (www.samaarajewellery.com). I make personalized and customised precious pieces in gold and diamonds.”
Married to Ammatanda Mithun Appaiah, Thirtha notes that cooking has always been her other key interest. Here, she shares a recipe for a spicy mutton curry.
Mutton – 1/2 kg
Onions – 1 large
Ginger paste – 1 tbsp
Garlic paste – 1 tbsp
Chilli powder – 1 tbsp
Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
Cassia leaf – 1
Salt to taste
For the green masala :
Coriander leaves – 1/4 bunch
Green chillies – 4
For the red masala:
Dried red chillies – 5-6
Coriander seeds – 1 tbsp
Jeera – 1 tbsp
Elaichi – 3 – 4
Cloves – 3
Cinnamon sticks – 2 small
- Wash the mutton well and marinate with chilli powder, turmeric powder and salt for about 20-30 mins.
- Prepare the green masala by grinding together the coriander leaves and green chillies with a few drops of water.
- For the red masala, first lightly roast all the spices individually. Cool, then grind together into a slightly coarse powder.
- Heat the oil in a vessel and sauté the finely sliced onions until brown.
- Add the cassia leaf and the ginger and garlic paste. Sauté until it they no longer smell raw.
- Now add 2 tbsp of the red masala, along with all the green masala and mix thoroughly. Cook until you see the oil separating out of the masala.
- At this point add the mutton pieces and water (depending on how much gravy is needed) and bring to a boil. Taste, and add salt and chilli powder if necessary.
- After one boil, cover the vessel and let it cook on simmer for about 25-30 mins. Check in between to see if the meat is cooked. Alternatively, you may pressure cook the mutton.
- Your dish is now ready..
This recipe, for a delicious rice pudding, is shared by Prithi Poovamma, a senior operations manager at Mphasis, in Bangalore.
An English literature graduate, who also has a diploma in architecture, Prithi is married to Kolera Harish. They have two sons, Yadhu Somaiah (18) and Thanav Thammaiah (9).
Prithi has travelled all over India with her ex-serviceman father, Nayada Madhu Madappa, and she has also visited the UK on work.
Her dream, she says, is “to own a small little café in Coorg when I retire, as Coorg is the place I love the most”.
About the recipe, which is made using fine, broken rice (akki nucchi), jaggery syrup (bella joni), butter, and milk, Prithi says: “I am not sure about the origin of this pudding. My maternal grandmother used to serve the dish at tea time. Honey adds its own flavour to this pudding when used as a sauce.”
Akki Nuchhi Bella Joni Pudding
- 250 grams small broken rice (preferably brown)
- 6 tablespoons of butter
- 300 grams jaggery (cane sugar)
- 1 teaspoon salt (to enhance the taste of the jaggery)
- 100 ml milk
- 400 ml water
- Roast the broken rice until crisp
- Boil water, add the jaggery and continue boiling until the consistency is syrupy
- Whisk the milk with butter
- In a large bowl, add the roasted broken rice, salt, whisked butter & milk, jaggery syrup and mix well.
- Pour into a greased dish and steam for 30 minutes or until it is firm on top. (Start checking after 30 minutes.)
- Once done, remove and serve the pudding warm with honey.
Alternatively this pudding can also be baked in an oven @ 250 C and be served with toffee sauce
After graduating from Jyothi Nivas College, Bangalore, I pursued an MBA in finance from IGNOU, after my both children were born. I am an enthusiastic learner and passionate about every little thing I do. Professionally, I have found myself the most self-satisfying role – that of homemaker!
I was introduced to cooking in my early childhood days when my parents bought kitchen kit toys for me. Playing with them was one of my favourite pastimes as a child. As I grew, the toys were replaced with the real kitchen items, and my interest, and enthusiasm for cooking continued.
I enjoy experimenting in cooking with unique combinations, like bitter gourd and melon seeds, soya bean or bottle gourd in bisibele bath, and bitter gourd roti. Though I cook with a lot of ease, sometimes I take more time thinking “what to name the dish?”!
The recipe I wish to share has been passed on from my grandmother to my mother. Though the procedure looks lengthy, I have seen my mother cook it effortlessly. Well, it is one of the best dishes my brother Kritish and I enjoy from our “Mom’s kitchen”.
STUFFED CAPSICUM WITH KHEEMA
Kheema 100-150 gms (Minced Meat)
Potatoes 2 big
Onion 1 finely chopped
Garlic 2 pieces finely chopped
Coriander leaves2 tbsp finely chopped
Oil 2½ tbsp.
Whole Jeera 2 pinches
Turmeric powder 2 pinches
Red chilly powder 1½ tsp
Salt to taste
- Heat ½ tbsp oil in a pressure cooker. Add a pinch ofwhole Jeera followed by finely chopped garlic and sauté.
- Add Kheema and sauté on low flame till the water separates
- Add a pinch of turmeric powder, ½ tsp red chilly powder and sauté.
- Add a little water, salt to taste and pressure cook .
- After kheema is cooked drain out the excess water by cooking it on low flame and make it dry.
- Keep it aside to cool
Step 2 with Potatoes
- Boil potatoes, peel and mash them
- Add a pinchof turmeric powder, 1 tsp of red chilly powder, salt to taste and mix well. Keep aside
Step 3 Mixing Kheema with the potatoes
- Heat 1 tbsp oil. Add a pinch of whole jeera followed by finely chopped onions and sauté.
- Once the onions are cooked, add the potato mixture prepared in step 2 and cook for a while
- Now add the kheema preparedin step 1 andfinely chopped coriander leaves. Mix them well.
- Cook for a while and then keep aside to cool.
Step 4 with Capsicum
- Cut the capsicum at the centre and deseed them
- Sprinkle some salt over it (sprinkle some red chilly powder too, if you like)
- Steam it. Do not over cook (to retain its crispiness )
- Let it cool
- Now stuff the capsicum with the filling prepared in step 3
- Spread some rice flour/chiroti rawa on a plate, and rub the stuffed side of the capsicum over it.
- Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a flat-bottomed pan and cook the stuffed side of the capsicum on a low flame till golden brown.
And your dish is ready.
Smitha Iyanna, is based in Ethiopia, where her husband manages a rose farm. They have a daughter, Renaa Muthappa.
Smitha is an entrepreneur who runs an Indian food catering service in Ethiopia, and also offers classes in Indian cooking.
She says that finding the right spices and ingredients in Ethiopia is a challenge. Hence, travelling back from Kodagu her baggage is usually filled with packets of Kappu Masala (pork masala) and bottles of Kachampuli.
She says, “I enjoy spreading the taste of India, particularly that of Coorg, in Africa”.
Smitha believes in living in style and has contributed two recipes – Mulberry wine for charging up your appetite, followed by her signature style chicken curry.
The Mulberry fruit can be found in the estates in Coorg. The ripe purple fruit has a nice sweet tangy taste and makes a delicious wine.
- 1kg ripe purple mulberry fruit
- ¾ kg white sugar
- fist full of raisins
- 4 cloves
- 1 level tsp of dry active yeast.
- 1tbsp honey
Wash the berries in water and drain the water completely. Boil the sugar in a cup of water until completely dissolved. Let it cool a bit. Add the berries to the sugar syrup. Now add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Store it in a glass or ceramic air tight container for a month. Keep in a cool dry place. Stir occasionally to make sure it is well incorporated. After a month, drain the berries from the liquid. Taste to check if it is sour. If it is sour add some more sugar syrup to suit your taste. Serve chilled.
KOLI CURRY WITH A TWIST
Smithasays “this chicken curry is a favourite among my friends. It combines the nutty flavour of peanuts with coconut milk. It is not very spicy and kids will love it.”
- 1 large onion finely chopped
- 1 large tomato skinned and finely chopped
- 1tsp ginger and garlic paste
- 1 tsp sunflower oil
- 1tsp each of salt, chilli, turmeric, coriander, cumin powders
- 1 tspkappu masala ( Coorg pork masala)
- 500gms boneless chicken chopped into bite size pieces and marinated in a tsp of salt, chilli and turmeric
- ½ can coconut milk
- 1tbsp peanut butter
- 1tsp tamarind paste
- 1 tsp coriander leaves, finely chopped
Heat the oil in a frying pan. Add the onions and fry for a bit. Now add the dry spices. Stir well and add the ginger garlic paste followed by the tomatoes. Put in the chicken pieces and cook till lightly browned (10 mins) on a low flame.
Now, add some warm water, followed by coconut milk and the peanut butter. When the chicken is cooked add the tamarind paste as well as the coriander leaves.
Serve over hot steamed rice.
Niveditha Belliappa Subramani honed her culinary skills by exchanging recipes with the wives of managers in the tea plantations in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, where her husband Kaushik, worked.
“The ladies in the plantations, most of them wives of the tea plantation executives, would share recipes and cooking tricks. Initially, I tried making pork chops with two different recipes handed down to me by two fine Coorg ladies. The kitchen soon became my experimental lab. I started cooking trials with my favorite ingredients- Italian seasoning, and our very own vinegar, kachampuli. In this pork chop recipe, the blend of the herbs, kachampuli, and rum brings out a heavenly and unique mouth-watering flavour.”
“My biggest critic is my 4-year-old daughter, Ojasvi , who already has developed a fine taste for meat. I aspire to cook like my mother and mother-in-law who have a great sense of cooking.”
1 Kg Pork chops, with fat
Italian seasoning (mixed herbs) – 3 to 4 tsp
Worcestershire sauce – 3 tsp
Malt vinegar- 1 1/2 tbsp
Ginger garlic paste – 3 tbsp.
Fresh red chilli paste — 1 tbsp.
Salt – as per taste
Pepper – As per taste
Oil – 2tbsp
Curry leaves – 8/9 leaves
Onions –thinly sliced – (2 to 3 medium sized)
Coorg pork masala powder – 2 to 3 tsp
Rum – 1 to 2 Tbsp
A little Worcestershire sauce
Or a few drops of kachampuli
Prep Time: 1 hr + marination time
Italian seasoning (mixed herbs)
2 tbsp Ginger garlic paste
Salt and pepper – as per taste
Marinate the washed pork with the above mentioned ingredients and refrigerate it overnight in an airtight container.
Pressure cook the pork with a little water for about 2 whistles and set it aside till it cools down.
Meanwhile, heat oil in another pan or wok. Add the remaining ginger and garlic paste. Saute until the raw smell disappears.
Add the sliced onions and saute for about 3 minutes. Now add the excess oil from the cooked pork (pork fat) into the same pan and cook the onions till they soften and change colour.
Add the curry leaves and saute while making sure that it is not fried too much. Now add the pork chops and mix well before stirring in the pork masala powder.
Saute for about 5 minutes or till the pork is well done.
Check on the seasoning, and add a little Worcester sauce or kachampuli, along with more salt and pepper if needed.
Flame it up: Keep the fame high and pour the rum on top of the pork. Set alight and gently toss the chops. The meat should havea dark reddish-brown colour by now.
Your Rum Blaze Pork Chops is now ready to be served.
Happy cooking and cheers, Hic Hic Hurray!!!
A gastronomy enthusiast, Tara shares her recipe of Guava Jelly. She points out that guavas are available throughout the year in Coorg.
A delicious jelly can be made using the juice collected after boiling semi-ripe guavas. The jelly is transparent and has a pale reddish brown colour. It needs no added preservatives.
20 medium ripe guavas, diced
Lemon juice( about 5 tbsp for 20 guavas)
Put the diced guavas in a deep pan or in a pressure cooker, with enough water to just cover the fruit. (If using the pressure cooker, reduce the water slightly.) Cook till the fruit is soft. Do not stir and make sure not to overcook till it becomes a paste.
Using a clean, thin cloth, strain the fruit pulp and allow the clear liquid to collect. Measure the strained liquid. Add one cup of sugar to every cup of liquid.
Put it back on thefire,add lemon juice to the mixture. Boil until the juice is sticky. You may notice white froth on the edge of the vessel when the right consistency is reached. Stir well.
Note : To check if the jelly consistency is reached take a small bowl, add some water and drop a spoonful of the mixture. If the mixture does not spread and retains a jelly consistency then your guava jelly is ready. In case after cooling the jelly hasn’t set, boil the mixture again till the right consistently is reached.
Have clean glass bottles ready, and keep them warm, so that when the hot jelly is poured into the bottle, they do not crack. Pour the hot jelly into the bottles, let them cool, and store. The jelly can be refrigerated for later use.
Guava jelly can be eaten with bread,dosa, rotis and also used as a dessert.