The fusion of the popular Ramaseri idli, an idli and dosa has a distinctive texture.
Gold crossing the paddy fields, and touching the palms, we reach Ramseri, Dhulia, Nondescript village, about eight kilometers from Palakkad, for breakfast. It is 8.30 in the morning, and the village is still waking up the previous night from the celebration of the temple festival. Nevertheless, a row of self-cars is already lined up next to a small joint with shiny green walls and a signboard named Sri Saraswati Tea Stall, The Ramassery Idli Kada.
Is this idli or dosa? An idli, insists on the local people. It is the famous Ramsari Idli, a fusion of the two. Soft and fluffy and shaped like a pancake, with its distinctive texture and taste, Ramsari idli has put this small village on the food map of India.
From 5 to 11 am, Ramsari idli is made non-stop at the All Tea Stall, which is one of three or four small eateries on the side of the road. A no-frills joint, it attracts dinners from across the state and outside. Two women busy in the kitchen have little time for small things. The owner Vijaykumar PK says the stall is 200 years old and Smita Vijaykumar, his wife Ramseri is the fifth generation of women to continue the tradition of making idli.
Smita poured the dough onto square pieces of cloth, placed on a circular sieve-like earthen steamer. As she works, she describes how many families have roots in Kanchipuram in Tamil Nadu and most of them were weavers.
Story behind idli
The local story is that the idli was first made by Smita's ancestor, Chittoori Ammal, when the weaving failed to obtain enough preservatives. Initially the village was sold to laborers and agricultural laborers, idli could be kept for a week without spoiling it. but not anymore.
Smita says that because the quality of rice is more Urad dal changed. Earlier they used to milling and using paddy from their fields. "Rice and Urad dal Soaked overnight, then ground. Ratio and ingredients are a family secret, ”says Smita, adding that they make batter everyday.
Pots and earthen rings were made by the local potter to hold the sieve trap. The sieve was made from a fishing net made of cotton thread. When the fishing nets were changed to nylon and synthetic thread, the women started plating cotton to make nets.
The slurry is poured over a cotton cloth rubbed on an earthen steamer. Three are stacked, one on top of the other, on a black aluminum pot on the gas stove. It is then covered with another aluminum pot.
Until a few years ago, idli was made on firewood stoves and pottery. “Only tamarind tree wood was used. However, it is extremely difficult to buy all these days. We have to keep up with the times. There are no longer enough potters to make utensils and rings. Only spherical steamers, glued and aged, are still made of clay.
The steam rises continuously from the pot as we speak. Ten minutes later, one is removed at the top and the hot idli is slide onto a leaf set on a plate. Scented, creamy coconut milk stew, served with coconut sauce, tomato sauce and a barley PodiIdli melts in the mouth.
About 600 to 700 idlis are made every day and on weekends it increases to 1,500. Smita has traveled to many places to make idli as part of events organized by the government and private organizers. They also carry out weddings and private functions. She says, & # 39; & # 39; We have participated in Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode, & # 39; & # 39; She says. "Ramsari Idli is a hit with customers wherever we go."
Seeing the popularity of the dish, recently, for the first time, a branch of Sri Saraswati Tea Stall was opened in Guruvayur.