Ragi special

I stumbled upon the WWC-Ragi for breakfast event hosted on Kalyani's blog. It was a perfect reason to bring out all the dishes that required Ragi (Nachni) as the ingredient.
My son has grown up and eats about everything which is the reason I have stocks of Ragi around. When he was younger I used to cook the Nachni Satva (Ragi Porridge) for him almost every alternate day.
Ragi in some parts of the country is considered as the best alternative to mother’s milk. The nutritional value of Ragi is extremely high with some additional benefits such as glowing skin and clean bowel.

I have a collection of recipes which I am listing below, one of which will go to WWC- Ragi for Breakfast.

Ragi Porridge
1 cup Whole Finger Millets (Ragi)
1 ½ cup Milk
4 tspn sugar (or jaggery)
2 tspn crushed nuts (almonds, cashews)
Ragi porridge for kids and you
¼ tspn Cardomom powder

1)    Wash and soak the Finger millet in 2 cups water overnight. Grind it in a blender along with little water (apprx 1 cup) to make a fine paste.
2)    Let it stand for some time. The husk will come to the top which you can spoon out if you prefer a smooth porridge. If you plan to use this for babies aged 6 months to 1 year old then sieve the mixture using a lot of water in a muslin cloth or a fine strainer. The rest of the recipe remains the same.
3)    Heat a deep dish pan, add the ragi paste (or strained water for babies) along with the milk.
4)    Let it cook for 4-5 minutes until the milk starts thickening. Now add the sugar and cardamom powder and stir in well.
5)    Serve with crushed nuts (Skip this for babies)
6)    You can also use coconut milk to cook this recipe for extra flavor

Nachni Fala
This is courtesy Mom. She used to make these falas during special fasts when we used to wait for the 1 meal during the day. Usually she made them with wheat flour or rice flour whichever was handy. But the ragi version of it is the most tempting of all.

2 cups of Finger Millet Flour
Water as required
Salt to taste (apprx ¾ tspn)
That’s it!!
1)    Knead the flour to make a soft dough using the salt and water.
2)    Make small puri shaped flat falas using the dough. Fold it half and then in quarter pinching slightly at the tapering end to make it look like a flower.
3)    Heat a steamer with water until the water boils. Grease the plate of the steamer with little oil and lay the falas on it. (Use an idli or dhokla plate if you like) Take caution the water should not touch the falas else they would turn soggy.
4)    After 10-12 minutes the falas are ready to go.
5)    Serve them with home made ghee or pickle or dry chutney/podi

Nachni Shevayi with coconut milk
This one is a laborious task but worth every effort.
2 cups Finger Millet Flour
A pinch of salt
3-4 cups of Coconut Milk
3 tspn sugar
A pinch of cardamom powder
1)    Boil 2 cups of water with a pinch of salt in a large pan . When the water starts boiling vigorously quickly add the flour and stir in well until it appears like a dough. Cover the pan and lower the heat and let it cook for 4-5 min or until vapour forms.
2)    Take the warm dough (Ukad) in a large plate and using a fork(if you are not used to working with hot stuff) start kneading the dough. This should be done swiftly till the time the dough is still warm to get the best results. If you are doing with hands it is ok to dip the hand in cold water occasionally. Ensure that you do not add more water else the dough will become soggy.
3)    For small balls (tennis ball) size of the dough. Now heat these balls in a steamer for 10-12 minutes.
4)    In a pan add the coconut milk along with sugar and cardamom powder and slight warm until the sugar dissolves.
5)    Put the dough in Noodle press (Chakli machine or sev machine) drop the shevayi in the serving bowls.
6)    Pour the coconut milk mixture on this and serve immediately.

Nachni Ambil
This is a prefect summer soup.
1 cup Finger Millet flour
1 cup of Curd
Ambil with breakfast
2-3 crushed garlic cloves (or chopped white onion)
Salt to taste

1)    Make the batter with Flour and water and let it ferment whole night in a cool dark place.
2)    In the morning add whisked curd and salt.
3)    In a large pan add 3 cups of water and let it boil. Add the flour and curd mixture and stir well. Let it boil for 5 -10 min. The consistency should be of buttermilk (or little thicker) so add water accordingly.
4)    Transfer to serving dish and add the crushed garlic or chopped onion for garnish.
5)    One cup of Ambil will keep you hydrated for a hot summery day
You will be surprised to taste this and know how much flavor it has. This also stays very well for a week in the refrigerator. Consume it cold the taste is even better.


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