17 July 2016

Angaya Podi

        An age-old rice mix powder, Angaya powder (literally meaning '5 berries' powder) is most often a hand-me down recipe that grandmothers, and their mothers used to make!! This powder is actually a boon for lactating mothers, but that isn't just it. Angaya Podi is excellent for digestion, and also common colds, especially helps improve the taste in one's mouth, and resultantly, the appetite during such times. Recommended dosage, 1 tsp to a cup of rice with at least 1 spoon ghee..
The ingredients of this powder are quite unique, such as dried neem flower and the Turkey berry, what in Tamil is commonly called 'Sundakkai'. 
In fact, in our home, weekend lunch is usually a detox one, comprising neem flower roasted in ghee or Til oil, and fried Sundakkai. Crushed and mixed with rice with ample ghee, it's a lunch made in heaven!!!
Here's the recipe for.....
Ingredients : (Makes about 250gms of powder)
Coriander seeds - 1/2 cup (100 ml)
Toor Dal / Pigeon peas - 1/2 cup (100 ml)
Chana Dal / Bengal gram - 2 tbsps
Kali mirch / Peppercorns - 2 tbsps
Jeera / cumin seeds - 2 tbsps
Dry red chili - 3
Saunth / Dry ginger powder - 1 tsp
Hing powder - 1/4 tsp
Dry roasted curry leaves - a few
Dried Neem flower - 1 tbsp
Sundakkai Vathal / Dried Turkey berry - about 10 dried berries 
Rock salt - 2 tsps

1. Almost all ingredients need to be seperately dry-roasted. First the coriander seeds, dry roast till you get the aroma, remove and keep aside.
2. Now in the same pan, add the lentils and dry roast till golden brown. Remove and keep aside.
3. Next up, pepper corns and jeera. Dry roast till aroma arises. Remove and keep aside.
4.  Next roast the red chili, dry roast till golden brown. Remove and keep aside.
5. Dry roast the neem flower, take care not to over-roast, just about a 2 min saute should do. Remove and keep aside.
6. Dry roast the Sundakkai till crispy, again, do not over-roast. Sample one and if it crushes quite easily, it is done. Remove and keep aside. 
7. Now turn off flame, and in the residual heat, quickly roast the saunth, hing and rock salt. Remove and let all ingredients cool down to room temperature.
8. Dry grind all the above roasted ingredients along with dried curry leaves to a fine powder. Transfer to a clean glass jar and store in a dry, cool place.

Paruppu Podi

          Paruppu Podi or Dhall powder is a common occurence in most Andhra and Tamil Nadu households and is an excellent rice mix. I have come across several variations of this powder, some with horse gram, with Garlic, some using whole green gram and so on. As with most hand-me down recipe books, my mother follows the one that her mother used to go by...
          A yummy caveat though, the more ghee you add, the tastier it will be. Yes, I hear that "Calories!!!!!" Yep. But the simple concept behind our traditional eating combos is Balance. So here, ghee helps balance out the spice, since the powder is dry, it helps it mix better with the rice and makes it easier to consume. And of course, eaten in moderation Ghee is known to aid digestion!!
So here's the recipe...very simple and makes about 200gms of powder.
Ingredients :
Toor dal / Pigeon peas - 1 cup
Dry red chili - 1
Pepper - 1/2 tsp
Rock salt - 1/2 tsp

1. Heat a pan on medium heat and add the toor dal, dry roast for about 2 minutes.
2. Add the red chili and pepper and continue to roast till the dal is golden brown.
3. Switch off flame and add the rock salt. Give it a quick mix in the residual heat. Remove and let cool to room temperature.
4. Dry grind in a mixer till you get a fine powder. Transfer to a dry glass jar and store in a cool place.