Sunday, 19 August 2012

Appam | Rice and coconut pancakes | Vellayappam | Kukskitchen

അപ്പങ്ങള്‍ എമ്പാടും ഒറ്റയ്ക്ക് ചുട്ടമ്മായി, അമ്മായി ചുട്ടതു മരുമോളുക്കായ്‌  :)

Long gone are the days when you had to make a 'thari kurukku', have the best roasted rice flour and then wait and pray for the appam batter to rise. My mom-in-law has the best mix for making appam which has become the staple appam recipe for many of my dear friends, cousins and family. I plan to share the same with you all today. Not only is it easy and quicker to prepare, it is infallible and produces the softest yet crispy-frilled appams ever.

From this recipe / batter I usually get 12-15 appams.

A few things before you start:

  • If you can't get the perfect fluff in the middle of your appam, try keeping your batter in the refrigerator for a few hours before hand. 
  • If your frills break up quickly, the culprit might be the heat on your pan. Try bringing up the flame bit-by-bit till the batter sticks well for a thick strong yet crust. 
  • If the centre of your appam fails to cook properly while the frills turn dark brown, the culprit might be a loose batter and/or too much batter poured. Try pouring less amount of batter. 
  • Sticky appam can be a problem when you stack them while serving. With experience I have known that the stickiness is directly proportional to the amount of coconut used and the fat content of the coconut used. Once I made my batter with no coocnut what so ever and the result was a perfectly fluffy non-sticky appam. The only down side is the taste. The taste of traditional home-cooked appam was missing.
  • If you dont like the sweetness in your appam you may reduce the amount of sugar added. However, you need at least a teaspoon of sugar, as food for the yeast, so it can act. 
  • A variation of this recipe is by adding aval / rice flakes in stead of cooked rice.
  • Substitute regular raw rice with a starchy rice like risotto rice or idli rice for a spongy texture.
  • Can't get an appam pan? Don't you worry! Use the batter to make pan cake/ dosa like appams. They taste the same and are soft except the crispy frills disappear. I used to make appam-dosas when I first came to the uk before I got my own appachatti.
  • Get adventurous with the shape - flower, triangle, any other shapes?
  • Remember, they are best eaten hot.

Tips for those living in temperate climates

great places to keep your batter to rise include:

1. on top of radiator
2. in the airing cupboard aka 'dosa muri'. I heard this term from my dear cousin D :) great name girl.
3. on top of the microwave if you know you will use the microwave a lot.
4. heat your oven to 50 degrees for about 15 mts and then switch off. Leave your batter inside.

Appam  |  Rice and coconut pancakes
Makes 12-15


1. Raw rice - 1 cup pre-soaked in plenty of water
2. Cooked rice - one handful
3. Grated coconut - of half a coconut or 1/2 cup of dessicated coconut- pre-soaked
4. Sugar - 3 tbsp
5. Yeast - 1/2 tsp or 1 tsp if using less strong yeast
6. Salt - 1 tsp or to taste


  • Pre-soak raw rice and dessicated coconut in tap water for a good 5-6 hours or if you forget to do that use hot water to soak the above, this time for only 1 hour.
  • Check if your rice is ready to be grinded. You can do that by gently breaking a grain of rice with your fingers. There should be no more chalk white dry rice left at the centre of the grain of rice.
  • Grind all except yeast for at least 6-7 mts in a blender.
  • Finally add the yeast and blender for 1-2 mts.
  • Do not worry about the sugar giving ur appams a sweet taste. The sugar is largely used up by the yeast and any left over sugar in the batter will give your appams a crispy light brown 'frill'.
  • Leave it in a warm area for the batter to rise. This can be done over night or during the day. I do it during the day and then leave in refrigerator over night. My mom-in-law says cooking with a cold batter makes the appam softer. I couldn't agree more with her.
  • You can now make your appam. Use an appam pan, heat it at medium flame. Too cold pan leads to dried out appams and too hot a pan leads to ugly appams. Pour a ladle-full of batter at the centre of your pan, twist the pan to get the desired shape, close the lid and cook for 2-3 mts till the ends turn light brown.


Sherin Deepu


  1. I am yet to make appam from raw rice.. I usually make appam using rice flour...
    btw Appam looks very soft :)

    1. Dear Ancy,

      You have to try this recipe mole. Try with raw rice and you will not look back. Trust me!


  2. Missing my mom's aapam. Looks yummy.

    1. Dear Vardhini

      Mum's cooking is the best. I miss my mum's kaipunyam esp since I am so far away from her.

      Do try this recipe. They will never be as good as your mums, but worth a try.


  3. Super easy recipe and appams came out soft and tasty. Thanks for the recipe Sherin

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. Hi,
    I wonder why the appams I make turns too soft and rubbery, not at all crispy. Is that because of adding too much grated coconut or not adding yeast.


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