Traditional recipe for making Vellayappam or Kerala style rice and tender coconut pancakes
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Serves: 10 to 12 pancakes
2 cups (450g) uncooked rice
1 glass of soft coconut water or plain water
Step 1: Wash the rice thoroughly several times until the water runs clear. Soak it in water for four to five hours until it becomes soft enough to grind. Store soaked rice in the refrigerator for at least half an hour before grinding.
Step 2: Drain the water and transfer the soaked raw rice to a blender. Add the required amount of soft coconut water or plain water in small steps and grind until smooth.
Step 3: Take two tablespoons of rice paste and pour it into a pan. Add 250 ml of water to it, for a fine consistency. Boil it over medium heat until it begins to thicken. Be sure to continuously stir the mixture using a spoon or spatula. Once thick, refrigerate. This process is called kappi kaachal.
Transfer the remaining rice batter to a larger bowl.
Step 4: Mix a quarter teaspoon of yeast with three tablespoons of warm water and a teaspoon of sugar in a glass. Mix and cover for about 10 minutes, until it forms a frothy mixture. Set aside.
Step 5: Cut the tender coconut into small pieces and grind it into a fine paste.
Step 6: Add ground coconut paste, yeast mixture and kappi kachiyathu with the rice paste and mix well.
Step 7: Close the bowl and let it ferment for six to eight hours.
Step 8: After eight hours, add one teaspoon of salt and two to three tablespoons of sugar. Gently mix the dough and leave to rest for another 15 to 20 minutes.
Step 9: Heat a non-stick pan or an iron pan (if necessary, grease with a little oil), and pour a ladle of batter.
Step 10: As the appam cooks, you can see air bubbles forming on top of the appam (pancake). Once the bottom is cooked, turn it over with a spatula.
Step 11: Once cooked on both sides, transfer it to a serving platter. Enjoy!