02 September 2021

Tri-color Vatteyappam ~ Steamed rice cake Kerala style

 is a fermented rice cake made with rice flour or ground raw rice, coconut, sugar, and yeast.It is one of the famous sweet snacks, famously known as "Naalu mani palaharam" (evening snack in my mother tongue, Malayalam) from God's own country, Kerala. Vatteappams are quite popular in the Christian community in Kerala. Hence, Vatteappams are an integral part of any Christian festival celebrations exclusively. 

Vatteappams are quite easy to make, are gluten-free, vegan, and have a long shelf life when kept refrigerated. They are perfect for breakfast and or as an evening snack.


My amma would make Vattayappams for breakfast or especially during long travel like whenever we went to Kerala during summer vacation when we were little . However, when I see Vattayappams ,what makes me really nostalgic are Christian festivals celebrated by our family friends during my childhood days...What really pops out are the fond memories of my next-door neighbor, a Malayalee Christian family ...During Christmas and Easter eve, Mary aunty used to prepare these appams, her chicken curry ,fruit cake etc etc and she would distribute it among all her friends including us ...I used to look forward to that pothi/packet full of Christmas edible goodies ...My mother would do the same during Onam..


There used to be something special about the Christian way of making Vatteyappam ....Aunty is an amazing cook and we all loved her recipes especially that finger-licking fish curry ....A boat can sail in my mouth....Her daughter who is a year younger than me, we were like sisters from two different moms, inseparable ...Verrry pretty (Whatta figure ! ;) ), naughty (Read:Mills & Boons) , good girl-friend and quite modern,I will love forever..


She is in the US too but then some people just change a lot after reaching here as if they are on planet Jupiter or cloud ten , (though it is indeed a wish come true for everyone out there to be in an amazing country, like the US) they forget their roots ,they are busy making new friends,old friends are history or geography,less chemistry... it is like a "Humbhi kisise kam nahi hai " mentality ( "W
e are no less good than anyone else attitude" ) ....

Some people are like that they can't stand seeing others doing well especially better than them...

I vibe where I get a sense of oneness/belonginess, like a feel at home....

Well,in the US,as per my observations and experience,I find Americans and others quite friendly than Indians here...(No offense to anyone,but sad truth be told !) ...Hence ,we have very few close friends (quality over quantity !) , all scattered in different states in the U.S...Rest all are hi,how are you types..or meet and greet types or friends with benefits type...Pride and prejudice types...who ironically have a big friend group as well...and it is funny how some people can't stop to show off the same....😃😋

My hubby/Honey P used to be a big people pleaser (undeserving people!) with his good intentions though but now learned his lessons too and now he is also learning to keep boundaries and I am a God pleaser, always a friend in need but I can't stand such superficialities for long, yes, it bugs me...But we get along and are nice to others because that's how we were raised...


So, when I make Vatteyappam , reminds me of my above-mentioned childhood friend with a huge smile and sigh ! I still remember her email to let me know that she is also in the US now and she used to call me
didi/chechi/big sis but she addressed me by my name,which hurt me but still I was dying to meet her but later realized that she wasn't that keen and I had to make an apt appointment to meet her ...:D ...yeah,then,whatever...I am checking my schedule since then as well...

Still, remember her sleeping next to my mother on the left side and me sleeping on the right side like a family....How people change !.... There are many like her....Having said that,I may hate a particular trait in someone but I don't know how to hate people forever. Since I ain't perfect either! 

All my childhood friends whether I am in touch or not regularly, they always say one thing in common that I've not changed a bit, like a burst of sunshine...They all love talking to me which can go to an hour or more (my preferred way of being in touch), that is one reason I don't call/text them all often due to time crunch or sheer laziness...That's the reason they all have iPhones and all and I don't as it is of no use to me...And I don't like to be in touch with people through social media too until and unless it is the only way.....#WeirdoFactsAboutMe


Anyways, gossips apart, 😂😋....Let's talk food ..

Since Vatteyappam tastes the best when it has an apt amount of sugar in it, and my hubby likes the one I make the most and he may eat them for sure. So,I don't make them that often ,but, since I try my best to celebrate India's independence day by making some tri-color foods here every year. Patriotism runs in my blood - My father is an ex-Indian Govt. employee, so was my grandfather, my uncle, mother's younger brother is an ex Indian Navy and so is another uncle, I've relatives in the Indian army, Indian Police, are lawyer ...part of/kinda contributed to the Indian Govt. And this is how I celebrate Independence day/Republic day my way...

So , this year my hubby mentioned Vatteyappam out of the blue, and I was like bingo,I should make a tri-color Vatteyyappam

This Vatteyyappam came out so spongy, soft, tasty, and colorful that I am excited and so happyyyy....Usually, Vatteyappam is a plain white rice cake in the traditional way....but I tri-colored it, the idea is to convey ,we are Indian first and to the core regardless of where we specifically originated from (statewise etc)...Well,that's my style and attitude ! 😊 Each to their own beliefs etc though...

So,let me share with you all how I make soft,spongy Vatteyappam my style

Tricolor Vatteyappam


Rice,basmati,raw - 1 cups

Coconut,grated - 1 cup

Sugar - 1 cup

Water - 1 cup

Cardamom pods - 3-4 Nos.

Rapid rise Instant yeast 1 Packet (1/4 oz/ 2 1/4 Tsps)

Salt to taste

Food colors - orange and green

Ghee as needed

Mixer grinder


Preparation method to make Vatteyappams:

  1. Clean the rice under water twice or thrice, drain off any water.
  2. Then transfer the first five ingredients from above into the mixer grinder and grind it into a smooth batter.It should never be too thin nor too thick.
  3. Once you ground all these, the batter will be warm ,the perfect stage to add the instant yeast and give it a good stir. Keep this well-mixed batter at a warm temperature be it, room temp, otherwise if it is winter or cold,keep it in the oven with the light on inside and closed.Since I am using instant yeast,it will take only 4-6 hrs to ferment and rise well.The key to make a soft,spongy vatteyyappam.Too hot batter will kill the yeast and spoil the batter and texture of Vatteyappam.Also, check the expiration date of the yeast used. Old yeast may mess up with the proper texture of the vatteyyappam as well.If using regular yeast it may take more hours to ferment .
  4. Sugar helps with yeast fermentation but salt if added together will hinder the proper process.So, add salt just before steaming this rice cake.
  5. Take a small pan that can hold the batter and fit into the steamer being used without over-filling it.
  6. Apply ghee inside which will help in removing the Vatteyappam easily once cooked without being stuck to the pan and spoiling the shape.
  7. Now divide the batter into three bowls. Add a few drops of orange color or red+yellow color and mix well the batter and the other with a few drops of green food color and stir well until well-mixed, So, now we have a bowl with white batter, orange batter, and green batter respectively.
  8. Then put the orange batter into the pan greased with ghee, followed by the white batter and then the green batter GENTLY.Do not mix!
  9. If you wish you can also add cashew nuts, raisins, and cherry pieces as well. They may sink to the bottom, to prevent this, once the batter is being cooked, halfway through carefully remove the lid and sprinkle them but before being all cooked.
  10. I use the idli cooker for steaming the vatteyyapam .A Rice cooker, pressure cooker without the whistle, or any other steamer can also be used for steaming the batter.
  11. So add like 2-3 inches of water in the steamer. First make sure the water is boiling,only then, reduce the flame and put the pan with the batter carefully and let it get cooked/steamed for 10-20 minutes until cooked inside out.
  12. Put off the flame.Let it rest for a while and then carefully open the lid and let the pan with the batter cool off a bit.
  13. Remove the pan carefully and let it cool off well enough. Insert a knife or fork to make sure it is well cooked.
  14. Then use a large spoon to remove the rice cake from the side and under, over to the serving plate.
  15. That's it the most beautiful and delish Vatteyappam is ready to eat.
  16. Cut into slices and enjoy with a hot cuppa of chai or coffee.
Incredible India and refreshing my G.K. about my motherland !!

OR, watch this Independence day vlog,I know Independence day was on Aug 15th but I got time to make this vlog now, better late than never is my unintentional excuse 😑...In this vlog, I made tricolor breakfast, Tricolor lunch, and the tricolor sweet snack....TRI it !!As always making memories ...celebrating life...spending quality time,growing up once again...

Reminiscing and saluting all the freedom fighters who fought hard and selflessly for giving us an Independence day (75th year) to celebrate, value, cherish and flourish our country India. Having said that, I came across this thought-provoking post that made me ponder and wonder how far we are still really from being a truly HAPPY independent India ...

🙌🙌🙌🙏👌👏PIC CREDIT: https://ankushtiwari.wordpress.com/2018/08/15/indias-independence-day/

Phir bhi dil hain Hindustani,

सारे जहाँ से अच्छा हिन्दोस्तां हमारा ,हम बुलबुलें हैं इसकी ये गुलिस्तां हमारा..............

On a lighter note,on Independence day watched SherShaah 😊,Son Of Sardar😊,Toofan😊, Radhe 😊 and looking forward to Ajay Devgan sir's Bhuj movie😊and Malayalam movie ,Meppadiyan😊😁...(good movies to watch with the family !)🙏

Thanks for reading!

Alrighty,Rest ( bheja fry)  in next ...

Take good care of yourself inside out ,

Love and light,


Other tricolor food recipes : Tricolor Popsicle ,Tricolor Puttu ,Tricolor Panna Cota ,Tricolor Custard ,Tricolor Barfi...