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Sandan: Konkani Steamed Delicacy Made Of Rice And Coconut Milk
Soft, fluffy and light sweet rice pancakes
If one had to select a perfect sweet counterpart of staple South Indian Idlis, then it would be immaculate looking Konkani Sandan. It is made with a careful balance of fine and coarse rice flour and diluted and thick creamy coconut milk which typically go in many Konkani sweet dishes. The difference here is the absence of eggs and jaggery, and the use of Kolam rice specifically for making it a unique vegan dessert. These white sweetmeats turn out extremely fluffy, well-grained and soft as cotton because of the overnight fermentation of the batter. And the very next day you get a light Sandan after steaming the batter kept in moulds for around 5 minutes.
What Makes Kolam Rice Different?
Kolam Rice is an indigenous variety grown in Kolam in the Wada tehsil of Palghar District in Maharashtra. It's also known as Wada Kolam, Jhini or Zini. The rice is eaten all over South India and coastal belts including Maharashtra and Goa. This rice is full of aroma, and light to eat and is popularly hailed as a perfect substitute for basmati rice.
Recently, Kolam rice from Wada tehsil was given the Geographical Indication(GI) tag for its uniqueness and belongingness to this place. The dish is popularly used for making sweet rice dishes during Pongal.
150 gm coarse rice flour or Khoi
Rinse the rice thoroughly, drain the water completely and spread them over a clean cotton cloth sheet to dry up.
Grind the dried rice into a fine powder and sieve the coarse flour from the fine flour with the help of a strainer. Separate the two kinds of flour into two bowls.
Prepare coconut milk by grating the coconuts, and grinding them into a paste.
Then squeeze the ground coconut, to get thick coconut milk.
Then prepare diluted coconut milk, by adding water to the squeezed ground coconut and pressing it.
Heat a vessel, and add diluted coconut milk and khoi or coarse rice flour and stir it and cook on high heat.
Add salt to it and stir the milk and khoi continuously on high heat until it thickens.
Then cook it for 3-4 minutes on low heat and switch off the flame. Let it cool down a little bit.
Then add fine rice flour and thick coconut milk in two parts and mix everything with a spatula to blend well.
Cover it and let this batter ferment overnight.
Add sugar to this batter, whip it and leave it for 15 minutes.
Then heat water in the saancha or steam cooker until the water begins to boil.
Pour the sandan batter into ¼ th of the small sandan bowls like moulds or vaatiya.
Place these moulds filled with batter in the steam cooker and cook for 5-7 minutes on medium flame.
De-mould sandan from the vaatiya or moulds and serve them.
The washed and drained rice would take about 3 hours to dry up in the fan, while it can also be dried under the sun. Use only Kollam rice for making this dish. Make sure that the cooked Khoi and coconut milk mixture does not cool down a lot, as it will delay the process of fermentation.
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