Vinayaka Chathurthi thali

BM #116 : Week 1, Day 3
Theme : Regional Thali

The plan was to start the month long marathon with this post. As Lord Ganesha is the first God we pray to before starting something new, it seemed apt. But it was Onam that day and so I kept this thali for another day. So here it is, two days later.

This feast was prepared about ten days back for Vinayaka Chathurthi. I made two kinds of kozhukkatai this time. I used readymade rice flour, I am planning to make it from scratch using my mother in law’s recipe next time. Looking at the thali, I realize that our daily meals at home when growing up was a lot similar.

We used to have rice, ghee, parippu/dal, sambar, sometimes rasam, porial, Sundal, yogurt, chips and banana. My younger brother would eat either dal rice with Sundal and chips or curd rice with Sundal and chips. We had a lot of banana plants at home so homegrown bananas after a meal is a must with my dad. We usually have an entire vazhakula (the entire banana bunch like how you see in the shops) hanging in our kitchen and we grab one from the bunch :-). So except for the kozhukkatai, payasam and vada, everything else was a normal affair. The only thing is we won’t have porial, avial and Sundal together. It would be either porial or avial. God knows how amma used to manage for so many years! The entire cooking had to be done by 8am so that she could be at work at 9 am sharp.

Anyway, enjoy the thali and I have shared the kozhukkatai recipe today. Pottukadalai filling recipe is from Blend with Spices and regular poornam recipe is from Madras Samayal. Read on for the recipe and for some more pictures.

The thali has

  1. Rice
  2. Ghee
  3. Parippu
  4. Sambar
  5. Lemon Rasam
  6. Instant Pot Avial
  7. Long beans porial
  8. Kadalai Sundal (with coconut)
  9. Vada (frozen)
  10. Yogurt
  11. Lemon Pickle
  12. Potato chips
  13. Poornam Kozhukkatai
  14. Pottukadalai kozhukkatai
  15. Payasam
  16. Banana

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup rice flour
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1-2 teaspoon ghee
  • For the pottukadalai (roasted chana dal)filling
    • 1/4 cup pottukadalai
    • 1/4 cup jaggery powder
    • 1/4 cup fresh coconut
    • A pinch of cardamom powder
  • For poornam filling
    • 1 tablespoon ghee
    • 1 cup shredded coconut
    • 1/2 cup powdered jaggery
    • A pinch of cardamom powder

Method:

  1. Make the fillings first. For the pottukadalai filling, add everything to a mixie jar and pulse it to get a slightly sticky mix. Add a spoon of ghee if it doesn’t stick together. Transfer to a bowl, cover and set aside.
  2. For the regular poornam, heat ghee in a pan. Toast the coconut for a minute and add the powdered jaggery to it. Keep cooking until the jaggery melts completely and everything mixes well and starts sticking together and doesn’t stick to the base of the pan. Turn off the heat and set aside.
  3. Bring water to a rolling boil. Turn off the heat. Add the ghee to it.
  4. In a big bowl, add the flour, salt. Mix.
  5. Add water slowly to the dough, mixing it in with a spoon. When it becomes warm enough for you to touch, kneed it a bit to mix everything well. You will end up getting a soft dough like for chapati. Cover and keep it aside for 3-5 minutes for the rice flour to cook in the heat.
  6. While dough is still warm, take out a small ball of it. Flatten it and press the middle and sides to get a small bowl like shape – like for making stuffed parathas. Keep a small ball of filling inside, bring the edges together and pinch so that the kozhukkatai is sealed.
  7. Repeat with the rest of the dough. I had a little leftover filling, which my son ate as such.
  8. Grease an idli plate and place the kozhukkatai in it. Steam for about 8-10 minutes.

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10 thoughts on “Vinayaka Chathurthi thali

  1. Renu Agrawal Dongre says:

    Love the way you have arranged this thali. It looks so good and festive. Each and every dish in this looks yum and amazing.

    Like

  2. srividhya says:

    Pottukadalai sounds interesting. I will try it. Moms are great naa… They just do all the work so effortlessly and those days there weren’t many gadgets also. but still, they did everything so well and efficiently naa. This is one amazing thali :-)

    Like

  3. namscorner18 says:

    I also make the same way for Vinayaka chathurthi. Looks so delicious and exotic thali. So true when we were growing up each and every festival we remember much about it and lot of memories. Don’t know if we are really making such awesome memories for our kids. We follow only half of what our parents did.

    Like

  4. Harini Rupanagudi says:

    Wow! This thali reminds took me down the memory lane and each festival menu had some very specific dishes and as you said naivedyam had to be ready before a certain time and it used to be such a busy scene in the kitchen where the kids weren’t even allowed to peek. Efficient planning and execution, Rajani.

    Like

  5. Srivalli Jetti says:

    This is yet another lovely festival thali Thali Rajani, kudos on planning this so well and capturing it. I loved reading about your growing up years, must have been simply awesome to have banana plants and enjoying that feast…and simply inspiring to read about your mom and her cooking. Our elders are really fantastic that they could manage so many with limited time. I notice that these days even if we all still have the zeal to cook and eat different course, the current gen wants to have only one course meal. Hoping they will change with time.

    Anyway another feast for eyes for sure..:)

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  6. vaishalisabnani says:

    Yet another beautiful thali Rajani !
    The Thali looks festive and perfect for the festival . We do not celebrate many festivals so have no special meals , but it’s a joy to see them , these thalis look so divine .

    kozhukkatai sounds delicious and perfectly done for the offering , I am bookmarking this thali and will come back to you when I get down to making it .

    Like

  7. Suma Gandlur says:

    This festive thaali also looks amazing and reminds those we ate while growing up as you mentioned. Now I am feeling like I should plan my festival menus ahead and make sure to click them. I end up exhausted after cooking a festive menu and don’t bother to even think about photography that day.

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