Horsegram (Kulith or Kollu) Adai or Pancakes
I was in two minds to post this recipe that I specially planned for kids all over (esp India) as they are presently enjoying summer vacations, thinking whether it would be accepted or not. Well, to be honest, horsegram is not a popular kid friendly snack but still went ahead and posted it as when you read its health benefits, you would be more than pleased to include this in your diet in some form or the other.
What deeply concerns me with regards to kids nutrition is that they don’t enjoy the food that we once enjoyed when we were little. The kids these days are sticking to diets loaded with cheese, deep fried stuff that have fewer veggies, sugar loaded that are no good for health. Most of them are junk food that has no nutritional value, they are frozen over a long period of time and hence lose all their nutrition. But unfortunately, this remains a hit amongst kids of todays generation.
We grew up eating home made nashta or snacks that were totally healthy, kept us full, gave us energy to play in the heat during summers. Today’s kids somehow lose interest in playing after a while, are low on energy and then turn back to either watching television or just lying lazily on the couch. Low immunity, lack of concentration etc are common issues that they face but somehow the food that they consume is often overlooked and not paid much attention to, which is the main reason for all this.
In my quest to losing weight and eating healthy since few years now. PS – I know the results don’t show that much but trust me, I am very active and have loads of energy than what I had 3 years ago. All thanks to regular exercise, mindful eating and in general being conscious of what I purchase at home – the basic ingredients. One such ingredient that I stumbled upon years ago was Horsegram. We South Indians have been eating them as part of rasams and kalatha podi or Kollu podi (kollu is Tamil for Horsegram and podi means powder) that goes with rice and ghee but I wanted to do something more interesting than the usual stuff that would not only attract the adults but the kids too. This Adai or mixed lentils and rice pancakes were a huge hit at home and my husband didn’t realise I added Horsegram in it. I told him after he was done eating and he was surprised that it didn’t taste boring or anything like Horsegram should actually do. Thanks to the lentils and the rice along with cumin that flavoured the batter and made it interesting. I make the batter once a week and it goes on for like 4-5 days so I end up making pancakes with onions, spicy pancakes, schezwan pancakes etc or appes with the batter by adding some semolina and a tadka or tempering of mustard seeds. So, we end up eating or rather cleansing for 5 days a week with this super food.
Since the recipe is for kids and they love cheese, I have used just 1 tblsp of grated cheddar cheese (that looks more like carrots) on top of the pancakes. A glass of milk, some ketchup for dipping the pancakes and foxnuts or makhana that are roasted in ghee for some extra munching completes the meal. Serve this as a breakfast or a 4 pm snack option just before they venture out for playing in the sun.
Horsegram is perhaps one of the most underrated of all the legumes available in India. Though it is widely cultivated in India and consumed in many parts, the popularity of this legume is not as much as say, moong beans or chickpeas. Maybe because, appearance wise or taste wise (once its cooked), they certainly taste bland. But interesting options like the one we are discussing might just encourage people to start consuming horsegram more in their diet. For starters, if you know the health benefits of this superfood, I am sure, you would run to your nearest grocery store and buy a pack immediately.
Horsegram is power packed with B Complex Vitamins and proteins. If you are looking to lose weight like me, please try to include Horsegram in your diet either in the form of sprouts or a dal or delicious pancakes like the one I am sharing today. It aids weight loss. For young girls who have hit puberty or are already menstruating, regular consumption of horsegram enables purify the blood and prevent clots, helps in pain free periods too. Horsegram is known to increase iron content in body and thereby increase haemoglobin levels of the body, which is generally found low among women.
Needless to say, this is also a diabetic friendly legume. Regular consumption enables control blood glucose levels / insulin levels in body, provides energy. If you suffer from serious constipation, please ensure you take a bowl of horsegram soup and not laxatives to enable smooth bowel movement the next morning. It is advised to be consumed by patients suffering from piles too.
Regular consumption of Horsegram prevents kidney stones. When small stones are detected during sonography, doctors advise patients to consume Horsegram soup or powder mixed with water at regular intervals so that the stones dissolve naturally and flush out of the body via the urine. Men suffering from low sperm count are advised to have Horsegram as part of their diet. Great at increasing immunity levels in body and it is hence advised to have this especially during winters when likelihood of colds and flus are high. In summers, when the chances of contracting UTI’s are high, horsegram always comes to your rescue.
Didn’t I tell you that this would be a powerhouse ingredient and that you would be tempted to buy a packet as soon as you finish reading this post. Well, why not? We all aim at providing the best for our kids, who by the way are the future and have every right to remain fit and energetic to handle the tough choices and decisions that they would make. Nutrition plays a very important role in all this and hence, no chances can be taken. Make smart choices, buy ingredients that were once upon a time consumed by you yourself when you were young and the best part is, sit with your child and eat with them so that he/she knows that the parents too are enjoying the meal and are not just forcing it down their throat. Switch off the TV and laptops and spend some time giggling and laughing and eating a whole lot of healthy ingredients that would go a long way in keeping the country’s future shining and ensuring environment sustainability too.
Looking for accompaniment options to serve this? Try the Gunpowder or Molagapodi, Figs Thokku OR if you are looking for other healthy and interesting snack options for kids try Oats, Paneer and Corn Tikkis and Masala Paniyarams.
Disclaimer – I am no expert nor a nutritionist but have been on a quest to lose weight and in the due course, have found the use of certain foods or ingredients that have benefited the process, in my case. Feel free to consult a doctor or an expert before including any new ingredient in your diet and knowing its health benefits. Thank you!
Recipe For Horsegram (Kulthi) Adai or Pancakes
Soaking Time 3 hours
Preparation Time – 10 mins (Grinding)
Makes approx. 20 adais big sized / pancakes
- Kulith or Horsegram – 1.5 cups
- Split Black Gram (Kali Urad Dal) – 1 cup
- Rice – 1 cup
- Chana Dal – ¼ cup
- Tur Dal or Arhar Dal – ¼ cup
- Hing – a generous pinch
- Jeera or Cumin seeds – 1.5 tblsp coarsely ground
- Salt as per taste
- Water as required to grind the batter
- Curry leaves few sprigs
- Few tblsps of sesame oil or ghee to cook the dosas
- Wash and soak the dals together for atleast 2 to 3 hours and then grind them into a smooth batter by adding water.
- Add the coarse cumin, salt as required, asafoetida, curry leaves and mix the batter well.
- Heat and grease a tava. Pour a ladle of dosa batter and spread it evenly. Drizzle with sesame oil or ghee (for kids especially).
- Let it cook completely before flipping and turning on the other side.
- Once cooked, serve hot with some cheddar cheese, tomato ketchup or gunpowder / Molagapodi for adults
- This dosa batter doesn’t need fermentaion and can be made immediately.
- Stays well in the refrigerator for atleast 4-5 days. In summers, I tend to avoid adding salt to the entire batch of batter and take only a small portion of batter, as required and add the necessary seasonings, choice of herbs, salt and onions etc. It remains fresh for a longer period of time.
- You can add regular urad dal (the skinless variety) instead of the Black Gram. I prefer the latter as it is high on nutrition and protein.
- You can add yellow moong dal, masoor dal etc too in some quantity.
- You can add red chillies too while soaking and then grind it along with the dals and rice. I have avoided as I make a basic batch of batter which I like to change everyday according to our taste.
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