Saturday, September 4, 2010

Kozhakattai recipe

Sweet Kozhakkattai ready to eat IMG_0359

Salt Kozhakkatai  ready to eat IMG_0363

Kozhakattai is a peculiar sweet or savory rice dish from South India. It is made specifically for festivals like Varalakshmi Vradam (celebrating the Goddess Lakshmi) or Vinayaka chaturthi or Ganesha Pooja (the birthday of the God Ganesha). In my childhood days at Shimoga (Karnataka)  after Ganesha Pooja, after eating a good number  of  kozhakattai at home, we as children used to make visits to many homes and temples possible where Ganesha Pooja was celebrated. The more Ganesha Pooja visited, the more blessed and powerful we felt. The next day at school, we discussed with our classmates who was the most powerful of us all!

Kozhakattai, as I mentioned in the beginning of this post, is a peculiar, multi-step dish. It is prepared by cooking a rice batter in low flame until it thickens. Then, the resulting dough is flattened, filled with sweet or savory stuffings and steamed. The resulting filled rice pouches are called kozhalattai. The recipes are definitely worth the effort. Like the old Indian advertisement jingle "No one can eat just one" :)

Given below are the recipes for sweet/savory and a baby-savory version called "ammani" kozhakattai. I have described the modern and traditional method of making these.

(Tamil to English: Kozhakattai - sweet or savory-filled rice pouches)


Raw Rice - 1 cup
Fresh grated coconut - 2 cups
Jaggery powder - 1 cup
Cardamom - 1 piece

Sweet Kozhakattai ready to eat  IMG_0356


1. Boil jaggery powder with ¼ cup water.
jaggery syrup IMG_0512
2. Remove the sediments by filtering through a sieve.
3. Return the filtered syrup to the stove, mix it with the grated coconut and allow it to thicken by stirring continuously.

4. The resulting mixture should be as shown.


1. Soak the rice in water for an hour.
2. Grind the rice smoothly by adding some water.
kozhakattai batter IMG_0507

3. Add 1½ cup of water, 1tsp oil and a pinch of salt (salt is optional).
4. Pour the mix in a thick bottom kadai (skillet).
5. Cook on a low flame by stirring continuously until you get a thick dough and it is almost 70% cooked (as shown in the picture above).
6. Cover with a lid and keep aside for 10 minutes.
7. The texture of the dough should be soft after 10 minutes. If not sprinkle some warm water on the top and knead into an even dough as shown below.
(In the traditional approach the water is brought to a boil, then rice powder added to it and cooked into a dough by stirring continuously)
kozhakattai outer batter IMG_0521

8. Divide the dough and make tomato-sized balls.
9. Flatten the balls using a chapatti maker (tortilla maker) and place the coconut jaggery filling inside.
press centre with your thumb and start making shape IMG_0527

10. Alternatively, apply oil drops on your palms to lubricate. Take a rice ball and make a depression, by pressing the centre of the rice ball with your thumb finger. With the help of the other three fingers, lightly press and rotate until you get a cup shape (as shown above).
Sweet Kozhakattai Rice Batter, Poornam,Traditional method Cup, Filled and Closed  IMG_0530

10. Bring the edges together as shown.

11. Steam cook for 3 to 5 minutes. Cool for 2 minutes and serve.



Raw Rice - 1 cup
Urid dal - 1 cup (50g)
Grated coconut - 4 tsp

Mustard seed ¼ tsp, Urid dal ¼ tsp, Asafoetida, pieces of green chili 1or 2 and salt.

METHOD:  Rice batter is same as mentioned in sweet kozhakattai. Stuffing and folding is different. Please see the photograph.


1. Wash and soak the urid dal for ½ hour.
2. Drain completely and grind coarsely with chili and rice.
3. Heat oil 2 tsp, and season with mustard seed, urid dal, asafoetida, green chili.
4. Add the ground mixture and salt.
salt kozhakattai stuff IMG_0540

5. Sauté continuously with manual mixing until the mixture is cooked.
6. Add the grated coconut and mix well.
salt kozhakattai IMG_0536

7. The resulting mixture should be semi-dry as shown above.
Salt Kozhakkatai  ready to eat IMG_0363

Kids sometimes eat up the poornam alone, and from the left over rice dough we can make a delicious ammani kozhakattai.


1. Make mini balls with the left over kozhakattai rice dough. Please see the photograph below.

Ammani Kozahakattai Plain  IMG_0545

2. Season with 1tsp oil, mustard seeds, green chili and curry leaves.
3. Add the mini balls, grated coconut and salt.
4. Sauté for two minutes and serve
5. If the savory urid dal stuffing is left over, feel free to add it at the end.
Ammani Kozhakattai IMG_0552

Happy Cooking,





  1. Posted right on time! would certainly be useful:)

  2. Gorgeous clicks of kozhukattais I have ever seen! Lovely,well explained post!

  3. First time here..really beautiful and tasty, great click too...

  4. kozhakattai's look really yummy and nice clicks.

  5. Well explained and fantastic photos

  6. Very kind of you all, fortunately I was in Mumbai for Ganesh Chathrthi and had wonderful darshan of lot of Ganpas! Happy Cooking!
    Jaynthi Sekar

  7. the sweet kolakattai i did was some what liquid since the jaggery melted while cooking