Eating is an agricultural act - Wendell Berry

Thursday, March 12, 2009

kanji - soul food

Kanji in Tamil, Kaanji in Hindi (Porridge) is a healthy, nutritious breakfast.
there are millions of different ways of preparing it.
we have always had this mix prepared and sent by our parents. this time we decided to prepare them from first principles.

here is our recipe.







Finger Millet






சம்பா கொதுமை

Broken Wheat




Pearl Millet




Soya Beans


मूंग दल

பச்சை பயிர்

Green Lentil

Moong Dal


மக்க சோழம்

Corn (Maize)




Horse Gram


Red Rice

चन्ना दल

போட்டு கடளை

Fried Gram Dal

साबुत दाना

ஜவ் அரிசி

Pearl Sago










table is under construction and needs some more gap-filling and verifications.
take equal amounts of all the grains and pulses. we did 250 gms of each item (except elaichi and badam - these are for taste and flavour)
the ragi and moong dal needs to be soaked overnight to allow for sprouting.
dry these 2 in the sun. ragi is the most beautiful grain.

dry roast all the grains/pulses separately (over medium/slow flame) in a thick bottomed pan. roast them till they become कड़क (crisp). test by popping them into mouth.
while roasting, do check out the smells. divine.
i added 4-5 badams and elaichi pods with each roasting batch.
cool the grains. mix them together and then grind them into a coarse powder. we did the grinding at a nearby chakki mill for a princely sum of Rs.10.50 (for 3 kilos). these mills were a wonderful part of our childhood (when there were no ready made flours in fancy supermarkets).

storage is best in fridgid environments. else likely germ infestation possible.

for making the kanji, dissolve 2-3 tbsps of the powder in cold/luke warm water. stir vigourously to dissolve the lumps (technically it does not 'dissolve').
then keep on low flame till it boils. keep stirring occassionally to prevent coagulation/lumping.
at the end, add little milk and sugar/jaggery.

healthy, nutritious and yummy kanji ready.


Preeti Aghalayam aka kbpm said...

my daughter's first solid food was kanji which we made at home. used ragi, moong (green), & rice. i think it really helped with her immunity. we still eat a lot of it though we generally get it from the store now. ragi is a personal favourite and very popular in my family especially for young children. when i learned that its name was Nachni in marathi, liked it more. such a nice name!

Airspy said...

Ha! CSM, this is the first thing on your blog that i can actually put to practical use:)
The gardening fundaes too comes close.

Vanessa said...

Same as kbpm- We give it to children as their first solid food. Pulses and stuff roasted, powdered and cooked. My daughter did not like it though, she went straight to adult food :)
You can get nachni satva readymade with sugar and elaichi put in. (company name sakas). Just put 2 teaspoons in milk and bring to boil. Tasty kheer. Me and kid both used to have that one.

csm said...

kenny - the names are so musical in the vernaculars. for eg., 'dalia' is called 'fada' is gujrati.
also am trying to minimise the 'direct from store' model. and 'direct from mama' model.

air - glad to provide practical stuff. am sure if you dig into the archives, the posts tagged as 'experiments' could also be practical ;-)

v - guess most of these foods will be acquired tastes for shreya's generation.

the idea of making the powder from the basics was to get it to its soul. which is my endeavour for as many foodstuffs i prepare.
to get to the core of food preparation is such a lovely experience.

Preeti Aghalayam aka kbpm said...

'Get to the soul' - sounds very wonderful! Good for you guys.

The plethora of shady foods in the market is really alarming, currently irritated by-
1. Frozen Peas
2. Aloo Mash - which is aloo cooked and powdered or something (YUCK).

csm said...

these are strange times and 'aloo mash' is indicative of the dangerous disconnect beteen us and food.

vibrantindiatours said...

Delicious and lovely looking. Wonderfully prepared.*
Chinese Restaurant in North Campus

vibrantindiatours said...

Delicious and lovely looking. Wonderfully prepared.*
Chinese Restaurant in North Campus