Saturday, January 8, 2011

Uppu Cheedai and Vella Cheedai/Salt and Sweet Rice Flour Bites..

"Chinna Chinna padham vaithu kanna nee vaa vaa vaa"..
This is a song which is sung to invite Lord Krishna home at the time of Gokulashtami or His Janmashtami.
What else comes to our mind when we talk of Gokulashtami???Nothing but the crunchy,crispy,yummy Uppu cheedai and Vella cheedai.These are small deep fried rice balls and is supposedly meant to Lord Krishna's favourite.
I am sure its not only His, but ours too!!
The Uppu Cheedai is the salt version and the Vella Cheedai is the sweet version of it.

Recipe for Uppu Cheedai:


Rice flour-1 Cup

Roasted Ulutham maavu/Urad dhall flour-2 Tbsp

White sesame seeds/ellu-1 Tsp(optnl)


Jeera-1 Tsp

Coconut pieces-about 10 or Grated coconut-1 Tbsp

Softened Butter-2 Tbsp

Asafoetida/Peringayam/hing-a pinch

Salt to taste

Oil to deep fry


1.Roast the rice flour for 5-7 minutes untill aromatic.

2.Grind the pepper, cumin and coconut if using pieces coarsely.

3.Sieve the rice and urad dhall flour well and mix all the ingredients adding very little water only if necessary to form a tight dough.

4.Heat oil in a kadai or deep frying pan. 

5.Take a damp muslin cloth or a damp paper towel and spread it on the ground.

5.Roll out the dough into small marble sized balls on the spread cloth.

6.Drop them in the oil in small batches and fry untill golden brown.

7.Keep moving the cheedai in the oil so that it does stick to each other in a bunch.

8.Drain them on a paper towel and store them in a air tight container for upto a month.

Note:Cheedai is generally known to burst when dropped in oil and it can cause a real catastrophe in your kitchen.To avoid the same,the following points have to be kept in mind while making it:

1.Both rice and the urad dhall flour should be very fine for which sieving is important.Any coarse thing may also lead to bursting of the cheedai while frying.

2.There should be absolutely no moisture in them, care to be taken especially if using frozen coconut that is thawed.

3.The balls should be rolled out lightly and not tight as it may cause the cheedai to burst while frying.

Recipe for Vella Cheedai:


Rice flour-1 Cup

Roasted Ulutham maavu/Urad dhall flour-2 Tbsp

Powdered/grated Jaggery-1 Cup

White sesame seeds/ellu-1 Tsp

Coconut chopped into small thin pieces/grated coconut-1 Tbsp

Cardamom Powder-a pinch

Softened Unsalted Butter-2 Tbsp

Water to melt jaggery

Oil to deep fry


1.Roast the rice flour well until pinkish white and aromatic,a little more than we do for Uppu Cheedai.

2.Let it cool and dry roast the sesame seeds and coconut pieces in the same pan for a few minutes.

3. Sift the rice flour and urad dhall flour and add the sesame seeds, coconut pieces, cardamom powder and butter.

4.Meanwhile boil water in a vessel and add the powdered or grated jaggery to it.

5.Once the jaggery melts,using a strain it into another vessel using a strainer to remove any debris in the jaggery.

6.Now heat the strained jaggery for a few minutes to form a thin syrup and then remove it from the heat.

7.Slowly add the rice flour to it and stir to form a tight dough without any lumps or the jaggery water can also be added to the rice flour mixture little by little to do the same.

8.Either ways,care should be taken while adding the jaggery water as excess water may spoil the dough.

9.Cover it with a damp cloth or paper towel and let it rest for about 15-20 minutes.

10.Roll out the dough into small gooseberry size balls little bigger than the Uppu Cheedai.

11.Heat oil on medium and fry the Vella Cheedai in small batches until golden brown.

12.Drain on a paper towel and store it in an air tight container.

Note:The Vella Cheedai usually has cracks on its surface unlike the uppu cheedai which is normal.
Excess jaggery may cause the vella cheedai to break when dropped in oil or it may even turn out very hard.

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