Tuesday 20 October 2015

Sweet Rice Flakes or Vella Aval (வெல்ல அவல்)

Flattened dehusked rice is known as beaten rice or flattened rice or rice flakes (அவல்). It is very light on your stomach as it gets digested easily. You can get rice flakes readily in the neighborhood grocery shops as thin/ thick flakes, or red /white flakes depending on the type of rice used to make them. Rice flakes are often used to make traditional snacks and savories. My grandmother would distribute rice flakes mixed with puffed rice (பொரி), peanuts (நிலக்கடலை) and roasted Bengal gram (உடைச்ச கடலை) on one of the ‘Navarathri’ (நவராத்திரி) days to those who visit our ‘kolu’ (கொலு). Sweet rice flakes or vella aval (வெல்ல அவல்) is often prepared for ‘Krishna jayanthi’(கிருஷ்ண ஜெயந்தி) and ‘Navarathri' or 'Dussera' festival. In addition, rice flakes are healthy as they contain in vitamins mainly A, B6 and C, and minerals such as calcium, iron, and magnesium. Try this easy-to-make recipe for your kids’ evening snack. 

Rice flakes – thick white variety, 1 teacup or 200ml
Powdered jaggery – ¾ teacup or 150ml*
Cardamom – 3 no
Ghee – 1 teaspoon
Cashew nuts – broken, 1 tablespoon
Coconut – grated, 2 tablespoons

*This quantity of jaggery will impart medium sweetness to the preparation as per traditional method. However, you may increase the quantity of jaggery from ¾ to 1 teacup (200ml) if you like the snack to be very sweet.

Method: Heat jaggery with 50 ml of water in a vessel, till it dissolves fully. Filter the jaggery syrup through a sieve to remove impurities. 

Powder cardamom seeds finely; grate the coconut and keep aside. Wash rice flakes 3 times in water. Then soak the rice flakes for JUST ONE MINUTE, and then drain fully
Sweet Rice Flakes or Vella Aval (வெல்ல அவல்)
Heat ghee in a kadai, add cashew nuts and fry till they turn light brown in color. Add jaggery syrup and bring it to boil. Let it boil for a minute and then reduce the flame. Add rice flakes and cardamom powder. Mix well and simmer till the water is fully absorbed. At this stage, add grated coconut and mix well. Remove from fire and serve as a snack or dessert. 

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