Brown Rice Uttapam with Cabbage


When I visited my friend Anu in Chicago last time, she made this for breakfast. Seeing her toss cabbage into batter and make uttapams I was surprised. “Really, cabbage in uttapam?” I asked her. I wouldn’t have thought of doing that. But it was excellent! Especially with the simple, fast chutney she made. Roasted peanuts, garlic, whole red chilli and tamarind ground with some water. No seasoning. No need to turn on the stove. That too was tasty and excellent.

Cabbage is such a bland vegetable that I am always at a loss on how best to create something exciting with it. The one or two recipes I commonly use cabbage in long exhausted, these days I rarely buy cabbage when I go grocery shopping. So it was a pleasant change to find a refreshing new use for cabbage.

Continuing my resolve for healthy eating and fitness (see Spinach on my mind), I decided to make brown rice uttapam for brunch for the weekend. To see the recipe for making the batter see my posting on brown rice idli here. Uttapam is a traditional South Indian breakfast and different people use different batter and ingredients in different ratios. I have evolved my recipe based on what works for my palate. For the traditional recipe I use to make idli/uttapam batter check here.

To make batter from scratch requires planning and preparation. Rice and dal need to be soaked at least for 8 hrs before blending into almost smooth batter. Then another 8-12 hrs or longer for proper fermentation. But once that is done, you can use the batter to make different dishes. The batter can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Here is the chutney recipe I used. Since I was short on peanuts, I ended up using 1/2 cup peanuts with some coconut and roasted dal. You can never go wrong with these ingredients. It was scrumptious!

Chutney:
1 cup roasted peanuts
5-6 dry red chilli
2-3 garlic cloves
some tamarind paste or fresh
cliantro (optional)
1 green jalapeno (optional)
salt to taste

Toss all in a blender and add some water and blend to a smooth paste. Alternately you can also add coconut, roasted sesame seeds, cashews, and/or roasted dal. Any combination of these can also be used. Always adjust spices and salt for personal preference.

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