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Chegodi is one of the popular traditional snacks from Telangana that has a shelf life of at least 10 – 15 days. This is also a popular snack in Andhra and similar ones are prepared in neighboring states of Karnataka and Maharashtra as well. Chegodi is made with rice flour and shaped into circles or rings and deep fried. This was one of the most often prepared snack at home when growing up and that gradually changed as homemade snack sellers cropped up in many towns and cities. These small scale home run businesses are run by women of the house who take orders a day or two in advance, prepare and sell the snacks. Since these homemade snack sellers cropped up, preparing snacks at home has become almost obsolete.
I usually avoid preparing deep fried food and hardly ever make traditional snacks at home. When I was in India this past December, I request my mom to make chegodi along with few other traditional snacks. My cousin A came over to help and I too lent a hand in making the chegodi. Cousin A is very quick in the kitchen and she took over the responsibility of doing all the prep work. She was so fast that I had to slow her down a few times to note down the recipe. Thanks to cousin A, preparing some of the snacks was a breeze.
The chegodi we make is slightly different from the recipes I have seen online. Though the ingredients, shape and preparation is almost similar, the difference is in the amount of sesame seeds. We are very liberal with sesame and specks of sesame adorning chegodi are even more appetizing and tasty. I could not measure each and every ingredient used in the recipe and all the measures listed below are approximate, except for rice and sesame seeds. Photos for today’s post were taken with my iPhone. During my stay in India, I was in no mood to take pictures for the blog and took some quick pictures with my phone, before all the chegodi vanished. I took the pictures almost a week after we prepared them. Don’t be intimidated by the lengthy preparation. I wrote a few extra notes and the recipe got lengthy.
Here are a few vegetables and dishes that start with letter ‘C’.
Chamagadda – Arbi ~ Taro ~ Colocasia
Chinta Chiguru – Young tender leaves of tamarind
Chikkudukaya – Indian Broad Beans
Chukka Kura – Khattta Palak
Chinta Pandu / Kaya – Tamarind (chintapandu) and raw tamarind is chintakaya
Chekkara / Shekkara – Cheeni ~ Sugar
Chepalu – Fish
Koora is a dry curry and pulusu is a tamarind based gravy.
Chamagadda koora, chamagadda pulusu, chinta chiguru pappu (dal with tamarind leaves), chintakaya pachadi, chikkudukaya koora, chikkudukaya pulusu, chepala koora, chepala pulusu, chukkakura mamsam (chukkakura mutton curry, it is with this curry that I started eating mutton about 15 years ago)
- 3 glasses Rice Flour
- 1 glass Sesame Seeds washed and drained
- ¾ – 1 tsp. Cumin Seeds ~ Jeera
- ¾ – 1 tsp. Ajwain ~ Voma or Oma
- ½ – 1 tbsp Coriander Powder
- 1 – 2 tbsp. Onion Garlic Cumin paste approx. (about 2 tbsp chopped onion, 2 garlic cloves and ½ tsp. Cumin )
- 2 tbsp. Chili Powder (approximately)
- Salt to taste
- Water to make the dough (usually hot water is used and we did not this time)
- Oil for deep frying
- Wash sesame seeds and let drain.
- Make a paste of onion garlic and cumin.
- In a wide bowl take all the ingredients except water and oil.
- Mix the ingredients until blended well. At this point, taste the flour mixture and adjust seasoning to taste. If you can not really make out, sprinkle some water on a small portion of the flour mixture and taste it. It is easier to mix chili powder and salt at this point when the mixture is dry.
- Gradually add water and make a thick dough. If making in large quantities, divide it into 3-4 portions and keep the dough covered. Dough will dry up if kept uncovered.
- Take one portion of the dough into a smaller bowl and knead it for few minutes until soft.
- Make small balls of the dough. If the dough is dry, sprinkle some water and knead well. Then make small balls.
- Spread a cotton cloth on the ground; a thin old bedsheet, dupatta or a saree will work.
- On a back of a plate or on a countertop or on a flat surface, place a small dough ball. Using palm and fingers, lightly rub or roll the dough into a long ½” thick wide log.
- Starting from one end of the log, fold the log into a circle to form 1 ½ rounds. Pinch together the other end of the log with the chegodi to seal it.
- Slowly lift and place it on the cotton cloth.
- Continue making chegodi in a similar way.
- For this quantity of rice flour, make all the chegodilu (plural) before frying. If making in large quantity, once the chegodi dries up a little, begin frying them.
- For this quantity, 5 minutes before you finish shaping the chegodi, heat oil for deep frying.
- Once oil is hot, drop chegodi into oil. Easy way to transfer chegodi to frying pan is to slip a flat plate under the chegodi pulling the cloth tight. Chegodi will slide on to the plate. Place this chegodi on another chegodi that is on the cloth. Make stacks of 2-3 chegodi. In a similar way slide one stack of chegodi at a time onto the flat plate and drop them into hot oil.
- Fry chegodi on medium to medium hot flame until chegodi is brown in color and fully cooked. Keep turning the chegodi in between for evening frying.
- Take out the chegodilu using a slotted spoon or a using garela pulla. This is a gadget similar to metal skewers. With this gadget, it is easy to remove chegodilu from oil.
- Remove the chegodi from oil and let them drain on a slotted plated or if using garela pullalu, put it on a vessel and oil from the chegodilu will drip into the vessel.
- Repeat the above process and fry all the chegodilu.
- Let them cool and store in an airtight container.
- Measuring Glass – The glass used is equal to ¼ kg of grains.
1 glass of rice = ¼ kg of rice
1 ½ glass of rice flour = ¼ kg rice flour
1 glass rice flour = 1 ½ US measuring cup rice flour
- Rice Flour – We used rice flour ground at the mill. My mom says she has tried making chegodi with store bought rice flour and it was always a hit or a miss. So she usually sends the rice to the mill for grinding it to flour. The mill is very close to mom’s place and she says she rather send it to the mill than worry about how the chegodi would turn out with store bought rice flour.
- Sesame Seeds – The ratio of sesame seeds to rice flour in weight is 1:2. For ½ kg flour we used almost ¼ kg sesame seeds, a little less than ¼ kg sesame seeds.
- Deep Frying – Chegodi needs to be fried on medium to medium high flame. If the oil is very hot, chegodi will be crisp and brown on the outside, and soft in the inside. If the oil is not hot enough, chegodi will become oily. Figure out the right temperature for the oil by trial and error. Fry 1 – 2 Chegodi to figure out the right temperature and flame to fry them.
This day in 2011: Vegetable Sweet Corn Soup
This day in 2014: Litti Chokha from Bihar
This day in 2015: Eggless Quinoa Nutella Cookies
Events: This post also goes to A-Z Challenge for day 3, letter ‘C’.