These delicious rice noodles take me right back into my childhood. My sister and I absolutely loved and still love this very simple but extremely flavorful traditional South Indian dish mostly had at breakfast but could be made for any meal. I have always thought of this as a laborious process, but the invention of newer , smaller and portable noodle makers these wonderfully savory noodles can be made in a zilch. As a kid, I remember my mom struggling with an ancient looking manual noodle maker ( pic below).
This machine required that she use the dough while it was still hot. She always needed someone to hold the legs of this noodle maker so it would be sturdy for her to squeeze the noodles out. But these newer machines today are way more easy. No more squeezing while the dough is hot or asking for help.
My little one is a big fan of these string hoppers as well. Half his dinner is usually done on the pretext of helping me make these, but honestly who cares, I did the same when I was his age :).
These string hoppers usually make it to our dining table at least once every two weeks. This is a simple recipe but requires some elbow grease and planning!
2 cups of idli rice/ 1 cup raw rice + 1 cup parboiled rice
Water to make it a thin batter
Salt as per taste
Oil – about 2 tbsp
Soak the rice for about 4 hrs. Drain the water and grind the rice into a fine paste with enough water. Add more water to make it a thin batter. Now take a heavy bottomed pan and add oil to it. Pour in the batter, add the salt and keep mixing the batter until it forms a dough. The resulting mass will look like pizza dough which can be easily moulded into balls. Apply oil on your hands and make small oval balls of this dough. Squeeze through the ssevai mould into an idli steamer. Steam for about 15 mins until cooked. Remove and serve with chutney and sambar. I made variations of this sevai by making coconut sevai and lemon sevai. Recipes coming soon.
This is a great meal to involve kids into. My little guy enjoys helping me in the kitchen and this is a safe way to involve him.