“Can you crunch murukku?” is one of the commonly asked questions when oldies meet each other during the festival of Deepavali. It is regarded as a blessing (or as a sign of good health) if one could relish crunchy murukku even at an old age. There is an old saying in Tamil “norunga thindral nooru vayathu vazhalam” (meaning crunching ensures longevity), it is considered healthy to take crunchy snack than soft snack as it takes longer time to chew, makes us feel full, and hence greater satiety.
Our grandparents and great grandparents relished home-made murukku frequently as an evening snack. In those days crunchy murukku were sold even in theaters to make the movie watching experience more enjoyable. Nowadays we prepare these traditional murukku only during Deepavali.
Here I share a unique infallible recipe for crunchy milky-white murukku which I have been following for the past 2-3 years:
Yields: 25 murukku
- 2 cups of rice flour (I used store-bought idiyappa maavu)
- 1/3 cup of black gram (urad dal)
- 1 tsp of salt
- ½ tsp of cumin seeds
- ½ tsp of butter (or coconut oil)
- 500 ml of peanut oil for frying
- Murukku press with necessary chip(s)
- Baking sheet to place murukku before frying
- Frying pan
- Frying ladle
- A plate (or bowl) lined with kitchen papers
Murukku dough preparation:
- Wash & soak black gram for 30 minutes.
- Pressure cook lentils after adding water in the ratio of 1:2 by simmering for 15 min when it reaches high pressure.
- Mash cooked lentils with potato masher into a smooth dough.
- Add rice flour, cumin seeds, salt and butter in a mixing bowl.
- Mix them with fingertips until butter is incorporated.
- Knead into a smooth dough after adding cooked lentil and water (1 cup) into the flour.
- Grease murukku press with coconut oil.
- Place the desired murukku chip at the bottom.
- Fill murukku press with enough dough.
- Squeeze out the dough by rotating the lever at the top and also move the press in circular motion to form murukku on the baking sheet.*
*It may require several attempts to form perfectly shaped murukku.
- Heat a frying pan with oil in medium flame.
- When the oil is hot remove murukku from baking sheet (by slightly lifting the sheet & placing murukku onto the fingers except thumb) and drop it carefully into oil.
- Repeat the same to drop 3 or 4 murukku into oil.
- Turn them over to cook the other side also.
- When the sizzling sound begins to settle, remove them using frying ladle.
- Place them on a plate lined with kitchen papers to drain excessive oil.
- Repeat the same procedure to fry the remaining murukku.
- Store them in an airtight container at room temperature.
- For old people who find it difficult to chew murukku, we can make thin crispy murukku as below.
- We can also make these crunchy murukku specially for children.
- It is important to heat the oil steadily in medium flame so as to make each & every batch of murukku crunchy. It is not advisable to increase or decrease the flame between each batch. So we need to form murukku on the baking sheet using all the dough before heating up the oil.
- If you want to make murukku in large quantity, you can prepare dough in small quantity (as above) and make at least 25 murukku per batch.