Crisp & tasty South Indian snack
- Rice flour – 1 cup
- Gram flour (besan – 1 cup)
- Red chilli powder – 2 tsp or to taste
- Unsalted butter (white – 2 tbsp)
- Salt – to taste
- White sesame seeds (til – 1 tsp)
- Hing/ asafoetida – ¼ tsp (optional)
- Oil to deep fry
- You will need a ‘thenkuzhal press’/ murukku press/ sev press with ribbon pakoda disc (disc with two ½ “ slits running along its diameter. Disc with more number of slits will do to.)
- In a wide mixing bowl/ paraat combine all the above ingredients (except oil to deep fry). Mix thoroughly with your fingers till butter is well incorporated and it resembles breadcrumbs. Gradually add some water, about ½ cup initially and knead to make a firm dough, adjusting water as needed.
- In a kadai (preferably iron one) / deep frying pan heat the oil till ready. Ready when a piece of the dough dropped into the oil comes to surface almost instantly.
- Grease inside of press with oil. Insert the ribbon pakoda disc in the thenkuzhal press. Fill the container with some portion of the dough up to ¾ th . Then press the dough into the hot oil directly by rotating the lever on the piston or pressing the dough into hot oil with the piston (if using the press variety without the lever option).
- Press only enough to be covered with oil. The dough falls in strips through the slits like long ribbons. Its okay for it to break as you drop into oil. Fry over medium flame, turn ribbons in between and fry till hissing sound and the bubbles on top of oil reduces and the ribbons are golden and crisp.
- Remove with a slotted spoon and keep on absorbent paper to drain excess oil. Repeat with remaining dough.
- Cool and break them up if too long and store in air tight containers for about 2 weeks or so.
Murukku/ sev/ Thenkushal is a special press used to make savoury crispy snacks. They have changeable disc with holes of different size and shapes used for different preparations – sev (oma podi), murukku (chakkuli), ribbon pakodas, kara kaddi.