Appams are a very delicious crêpe-type thingy made of rice batter and coconut milk, eaten in many parts of southern India and Sri Lanka. Unfortunately, I can’t make them.
I can, however, make a mean vegetable stew of the kind usually served with appams. It’s ridiculously easy too!
- 1 onion, small – thinly sliced
- Button mushrooms, chopped – 50 gms
- Carrots, chopped small – 50 gms
- Green peas – 50 gms
- Coconut milk – 2 to 3 tbsp
- Big cardamom – 1 big pod
- Cloves – 4
- Cinnamon – 1 one-inch stick, broken into smaller bits
- Bay leaf – 1
- Black pepper powder – 1/4 tsp, scant
- Salt – to taste
- Water – as needed
Heat up a wok or other pot, and turn down the heat to a steady low. Add big cardamom pod, cloves and cinnamon bits. Toast for about 45 seconds, then add bay leaf. Toast for another minute. When you get a light whiff of the aroma of the spices, add onions. When onions start to brown a bit, add mushrooms and carrots. Cook for another couple minutes or so. Add enough water to just about cover the vegetables and bring to a gentle boil. Add peas and pepper, cover and cook for about 3 to 4 minutes, till vegetables are done. Add salt and coconut milk. Mix well. Turn off heat when you see a gentle bubbling. Cover and let the stew sit for about 10 minutes before eating.
With some steamed rice, this amount of stew serves one very hungry person, such as me.