Okay let the fireworks begin....Diwali celebration starts ........Now
Manni is a famous sweet dish for us Mangaloreans...something that used to be made on a weekly basis in most of the households...any guests home ...invited or not...Manni was all ready to be served ....I remember every summer vacation we used to spend it in Karkala and any house I went to...we were served Manni and without fail....by default...there had to be boiled egg(roasted in salt and chilli powder)......and it was the same in our house too.
There are so many dishes Mom used to make when we were kids....so many we disliked.....I used to hate Sajige (Upma)...."Mom , whats for breakfast?" .....she would say "Sajige" and my reply would be "You mean concrete".....hated brinjal...dry fish chutney....pelakai da ghatti.....so many more.....and Manni always topped the list. I just used to hate the fact that it wobbles.....hated all these dishes through school....college...graduation and one fine day get married ...go to a different house...in some other country ...far far away.....then after 1 or 2 years get back home...then these same dishes are ....like... I AM IN HEAVEN.......I think this is when I realized ....my dad might be a hero to me.....but my Mom ....she is SUPERWOMAN (Please don't tell my mom I said that)
When I think of Manni the first name that comes to my mind is ...Vatsala Aunty (my ex neighbor and relative).....all I remember is that ...she always had manni in her fridge...always (ok maybe I am exaggerating ...maybe the right word is OFTEN)....I thought this must be very simple...I mean Vatsala aunty makes it all the time.....until I tried it out ..under the guidance of my Mom....The ingredients are pretty simple...its just the muscle power needed to cook this dish....almost 1 hour of constant stirring...we kept taking turns...its was a good workout...made up for 2 weeks of skipping gym....and my Gym Sir calls me Lazy....little did he know......
Print this recipe
- 2 cups rice (washed and soaked for 3 hours)
- 1 coconut (to remove milk)
- 1 cup Jaggery (adjust to taste)
- 2 tsp Cardamom Powder
- One pinch salt
- Ghee to grease the pan
- Remove Coconut milk. Try to get about 4 cups of coconut milk(thick and thin).Keep this aside.
- Grease a 10 inch plate with ghee and keep aside.
- Grind rice to a fine paste using water, mix the ground rice and coconut milk,add jaggery. The batter must be almost water like consistency (like neer dosa batter).You can add more water if the batter is thick.
- Place this vessel on medium low flame.Its important to stir the batter non stop at least in the beginning. This will avoid forming of lumps (which is a complete no no for Manni)
- The batter will thicken eventually, but you have to keep stirring for almost 45 minutes to 1 hour, or the pudding won't set. There are ways to know if the pudding is done: - Wet your hands and touch the pudding, if it does not stick to your hands then the pudding is done. One more tip is to drop 1 tsp of batter into little water in a plate, if the pudding holds shape then its done, if it disintegrates you will have to stir longer.
- Somewhere around 30 minutes of stirring ,add cardamom powder.
- Once the pudding is done pour it on to the greased plate and spread it evenly.Pour 2 tbsp ghee on top of the pudding and spread it around.
- Let the pudding cool in room temperature, refrigerate till the pudding sets.
- Cut to diamond shape, you can sprinkle some roasted cashew nuts on top which is optionally.
Note: Instead of removing coconut milk you can also grind coconut with rice and add lot of water.