Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Kappa with Ulli Chammanthi

Kappa and Kanji is one of the most common and affordable Kerala food available in the smallest of pettikadas(small roadside shops) and in small-time restaurants as well.I have always been fascinated by the board outside these shops at 11 in the morning till almost 4 in the evening,which read-kappa,kanji thayyar.There was a small shop next to our school from where the heavenly aroma of kappa puzhukku(kappa side-dish) came..but alas,we were forbidden to go out of the school gates(I wouldn’t have dared also.;-).Appa was very averse to we kids eating roadside foods due to the low hygienic levels.He always told us whenever we felt like eating something,amma will make it for us and we don’t have to buy it from outside.We hated the rule then,but now I wouldn’t trade amma’s food for anything else in the world!!

Kappa is prepared in many ways,but the most common is kappa vevichathu(boiled kappa) and kappa puzhukku(kappa cooked with a ground masala).I love both.My elder bro is an ardent kappa fan and would buy it in kilos..;-).Amma usually boiled the kappas as those days,we didn’t use onions and garlic,without which the puzhukku would taste bland.We had it with dry coconut chutney and pickle.Amma used to prepare kappa upkari too,seasoning it with red chilly powder..yummy!!!

My joy knew no bounds when I saw kappa here,in Chennai.Even though the taste and quality does differ obviously,I don’t mind that at all!!I was not sure how it would taste,so I just boiled it,but to be frank,it tasted superb.Cooking time was more but it was very soft and tasty.I made some ulli chammanthi to go with it,though hubby would have much preferred to have it with fish curry;-)

Read more about Kappa-Tapioca and check out the pictures here.

For a pictorial description on how to clean,peel and cook kappa,click here.
For more kappa recipes,click here.

Kappa Vevichathu with Ulli Chammanthi


Kappa-Tapioca – 1 kg
Salt to taste


Wash the kappa well under running water
Chop off the both the ends.
Cut them into half,vertically,peel the skin(both the soft brown peel and the hard whitish peel).
Again cut them into small pieces.
Boil the kappa with enough water in a big pan,do not cover.
When it starts boiling,switch off the flame and throw away the water.
In a pressure cooker add enough water,salt and cook the kappa till soft(you can cook it on stove top too,but the kappa available here takes more time to cook,hence I use a pressure cooker).
Kappa should be soft to touch,but not mushy.

Serve hot with spicy ulli chammanthi.

To make Ulli Chammanthi

Peel about 10-15 small onions/shallots.
Add 3-5 green chillies(depending on your spice buds).
Crush them together in a mortar and pestle with enough salt(you could also use a mixie,but take care to grind it coarsely).
Pour a generous spoon of coconut oil.


  1. OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHhh this is real TORTURE. Seeing that kappa with ulli chammathi. I am just DROOLING here. One ofmy favourite dsh.
    Actually seeing that pic , i can imagine the taste of it yummm

  2. Havent heard abt this..Sounds authentic..You look cute in the profile pic..

  3. That kappa looks so creamy and soft....i havent seen such good ones here....my fav is this combo....was planning to blog it sometime but i dont get that good quality kappa here.....thoughts of having it are enough to create a flood in my mouth!

  4. Wow... nice entry... thxs for sharing.. really tempting..

  5. HC..thank you so much.I was lucky enough to lay my hands on such good quality kappa!!

    Divs..thank you.Kappa is every Keralite's fav food.Thanks for the compliment!!

    Mishmash..thanks so much.What have you decided about pazhanganji?;-)

    SK..thank you!!

    Anon..you are welcome...but thank you for what..??!!

  6. is this anyway similar to the kepa kanchi that is famous in TN? I know this is a healthy recipe but i haven't tasted it...do we get these in the US?

  7. Hi...
    Tapioca is my fav. My mom used to make puttu out of it. I have posted in my blog long back.... Ur recipe looks so good...YUM!

  8. Sangeeth..am not sure if both are the same!!

    Sukanya..thanks so much!!


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