Sunday, May 29, 2016

Ela Ada (steamed-stuffed rice wraps)

Ela Ada, is a traditional Kerala delicacy. It is made of  a rice flour dough, with sweet coconut and jaggery/sugar filling that is steamed in banana leaves. This is one of my most favorite tea time snacks. It is served for breakfast during the festive season. I remember it being made for Thiruvonam back home. On the night of uthradam (the day before Thiruvonam), we used to make Thrikkakareyappan (A clay pyramid structure with four faces and a flat top made during Onam celebrations. This unique structure represents Vamana, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. For some people the pyramid represents both King Maveli and Vishnu. It is also referred as Onathappan). Ada was made as nivedyam for Onathappan, it had thumbapoo [a white flower(Leuca Indica)] in the filling, and so called Poovada. Here goes the recipe...

1 cup Rice flour ( slightly roasted)
1 1/2 cup water
Salt, as required

3/4 cup grated coconut
1/2 cup Jaggery, powdered
1/2 teaspoon cardamom powder
1 teaspoon Ghee 
Banana leaves

Boil the water with salt. Add rice flour to the boiling water and switch off the stove. Cover it and keep aside for 2 mins. Open the lid and knead the dough until smooth.

In a pan, heat ghee. Add coconut and fry for 2 mins. Mix in jaggery and cardamom powder and blend well and keep it aside. 

Make medium sized balls of the rice dough. Place one ball of rice dough on a piece of banana leaf (this should be wilted on a low flame before use or else it will tear). As I did not have banana leaf, I used parchment paper. Spread the dough with your fingers. You can dip your hand in water if the dough is sticky. Keep the coconut filling on one side and fold over. Make similar wraps with the remaining dough and filling. Steam the wraps for 10-15 minutes. 

The Banana leaf imparts a subtle flavor to the ada. Even though my ada was missing that flavor, it was tasty.


1. You can make variations by adding banana to the filling.
2. If you think that Jaggery has impurities, then heat it along with little water and 
    filter it before mixing
3. Banana leaf can be wilted by holding it on a low flame for few seconds
4. If you want the Ada to be crispy, then cook it on a tava instead of steaming. 
    But then it becomes ottada.


Suja Manoj said...

Elaada is my favorite,looks so yummy.
Some times I make ottada too.

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