This is my favourite bread. Call it a bread or pancake the delicate flavours of Appam has no match. It’s made of fermented rice and coconut but there are many variations to this dish. Some variations are to convenience and other varies from region to region. It definitely needs some planning as the batter needs to sit and ferment.. This is as much a favourite in Sri Lanka & they call it Hoppers.
So here we go.
Rice – 1 and half cup. (Any short grain rice) – Soaked in for about 4 hours
Cooked rice – 1/2 cup
Coconut milk (Thick) – 1 cup
Coconut milk (Thin) – 1 and 1/2 cup
Yeast – 1 tsp
Sugar – 1 tsp
Salt to taste
Add the yeast and sugar in a bowl. Add 1 cup warm water & stir it in. Cover & keep aside till it rises.
Prepare the coconut milk
In a blender add the soaked rice, cooked rice, yeast mixture and 1/2 cup thin coconut milk. Grind it till smooth paste. Grind it well as we do not want it to be too grainy. If you need more liquid to churn add 1/2 cup of thin coconut milk & grind. Now add the thick coconut mix & remaining thin milk & grind into a smooth batter. The batter consistency should be like Idli batter. If you are not sure about the idli batter no worries :-) Just dip in a finger and see if the mixture coats your finger yet is dripping down. That’s how you get the perfect consistency.
Pour the batter in a big a container and let it sit in a warm place 12 – 15 hours. Best is to prepare this in the night & let it sit all night and may be another few hours the next day. Batter might look much thicker than what you last saw adjust the consistency with some water or thin coconut milk. Also,add salt before you get started.
Once the batter is fermented & ready…
You can use either a non-stick small pan, or cast iron wok or appam chetti. Heat the pan, and brush it some oil.
Add a ladle of batter & swirl in a circular motion. With this method, the batter will be thinner on the outer edge & the excess batter will accumulate in the centre. Now put a lid and cook it with a lid on for 2 – 3 min.
Once the sides start leaving the pan its time to pull them out.
Enjoy this traditional dish with Creamy Egg Curry Or Chicken curry.