June 29, 2011

Appam and Vegetable Stew

Appam and stew is a traditional breakfast of Kerala. The recipe for Appam and stew varies in different regions of Kerala.  Stew can be prepared only of potatoes, or mixed vegetables, or even chicken or mutton. Given here is the recipe of appam and vegetable stew we make at home. I have used potaotes, carrot and beans for this stew. You may add green peas and cauliflower too.

Ingredients for Appam:

Raw rice or Idly rice - 2 cups
Cooked rice  - 1 cup
Shredded coconut - 1 cup (or subsitute with Coconut milk - 3/4 cup)
Sugar - 2 tsp
Dried Yeast / Fast action yeast - 1 tsp
Bicarbonate of Soda/ Baking soda - 1/2 tsp

Preparation of appam batter:

1. Soak the raw/idly rice in water for 5-6 hours.
2. Add cooked rice, coconut, sugar, salt to the rice and grind it to a smooth batter. If you are using coconut milk, add it after grinding. The batter should be a pouring consistency and a little thinner than dosa batter.
3. Add yeast and baking soda to the batter and mix well. Keep this batter overnight for fermentation. In winter, it takes more time to ferment, so keep it in a warm place( eg: near the room heater).

Making the appam:

Appams are traditionally made in iron skillet called "appa chatti". I use a Prestige non-stick appam pan. Appams have a soft fluffy center and a lacy border which comes very well on iron skillet. The advantage of using a non-stick pan is that you need not use a single drop of oil for making appams. For iron skillet, you need to lightly grease it with oil before making appam.

1. Pour a ladle full of batter (approx 3 tbsp) in a hot skillet or appam pan and swirl it immediately. A thin later of the batter sticks to the sides of the pan and a small pool of batter in the middle.
2. Cover with a lid and cook on low flame till the center of the appam is cooked and the lacy border starts getting detached from the pan.

If you do not have an iron skillet or the appam pan, you can still make appam on a dosa tava. But you wouldn't get the lacy borders.

1. Pour a ladle full of batter on a hot dosa tava. Do not spread it with a spoon. The batter would spread by itself to a neat circular shape. Cover and cook on low flame till done. You may want to flip to the other side and cook if you like.

Appam made on dosa tava will look like this pic.

Appams can be served with veg or non-veg stews, kadala curry, potato curry, egg masala, and other non-veg gravies.

Ingredients for Vegetable Stew:

Oil - 1 tbsp
Green cardamom - 2
Cinnamon stick - a  small piece
Onion - 1, sliced
Chopped Ginger - 2 tsp
Green chillies - 3 or 4, slit
Potatoes - 2, diced
Carrot - 1 or 2, diced
French Beans - 4-5, cut
Curry leaves - a sprig
Thick Coconut milk - 3/4 to 1 cup
White Pepper powder - 1/2 tsp (optional)


1. Heat oil in a pan and add cardamom and cinnamon and saute. Add onions, ginger and green chillies and saute for a couple of minutes.
2. Add potatoes and carrots, salt and water and cover and cook cook till they are 3/4th cooked.
3. Add the beans and cook till the veggies are done. Mash a few pieces of potato to make the gravy a little thicker
4. Pour coconut milk and add curry leaves and simmer for few minutes. Add pepper powder. I add it to balance the taste of coconut milk and to make the curry a little spicier.

Note: This is the recipe I follow at home. I have had different versions of stew from different regions of kerala, and I am not sure which is the most authentic. All I can say is that this tastes great with appam or even roti.

Sending this to the Kerala Kitchen event hosted by Magpie this month.


  1. Good recipe, thanks for posting!

  2. Thank you Ramya! My stew is almost ready and looking forward to a good eat :)

  3. Stew came out well and my three* boys loved it! Thanks again! It was quick and easy - will be trying more of ur recipes :)


  4. Thanks for sharing this recipe. I look forward to trying it out...
    Restaurant in South Campus


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