Today we start 37th edition of the blogging marathon. This month I am doing the first two weeks and for the first week, my theme is Kitchen Basics. According to the rules, it includes spice powders, homemade mixes and condiments, ready to use toppings and includes any dish that can complement another dish but cannot be served as such. For the first day of the marathon, I have a healthy spice powder or podi that can be served with rice. It can also be served with idli or dosa although I have not done so. Podies (powders) are very common in South Indian kitchens and are used as a condiment for idli & dosa. Most of these podies can also be served with steaming rice with a dollop of ghee. Podi is a spice powder made with dry roasting red chilies and few other spices and then ground to a fine or coarse powder. I like podies but do not make them as much at home, as Mr.U is not a big fan of podies and I am just too lazy to make them just for myself.
Flax seeds are nutritious and healthy nuts or seeds. These seeds are rich in mega 3 fatty acids, fiber and antioxidants. I have been meaning to incorporate these seeds in my diet for quite some time. Padmini, one of my virtual friends shared a flax seeds powder in one of the social networking groups that we both are a member of. Ever since I saw that recipe, I wanted to try it and only got to prepare it last week, thanks to this week’s theme. This powder is made of flax seeds, peanuts, curry leaves & red chilies. All the ingredients are dry roasted, cooled and then made into a powder. I liked the powder and my dear husband refused to taste it as he thinks podies are not eaten with rice! Anyway, this podi is nutty in flavor and tasted good with steaming rice.
Yesterday when I was looking up for information on flax seeds for this post, I got conflicting information about flax seeds powder/meal. It is said that flax seeds when not exposed to too much heat stay fresh for at least a year and powdered flax seeds stay fresh for only few months when stored away from heat and light. The oil in flax seeds is highly unsaturated which is prone to oxidation if not stored properly. These oils are stable when the seeds are used in baking. To prepare flax seeds peanut powder, I dry roasted the flax seeds and then powdered it, the powder will stay fresh for months if stored properly. Normally podies have a good shelf life when stored in an air tight container but after reading about powdered flax seeds, to be on the safe side, I highly recommend storing it in a refrigerator in an air tight container.
Preparation Time: 15 minutes + time to cool roasted ingredients
Yields: 1 ½ – 2 cups
- ½ cup Flax Seeds
- ½ cup Peanuts
- ½ cup fresh Curry Leaves or approx. 40 Curry Leaves
- 6 Dry Red Chilies (adjust to spice tolerance level. Felt I could have added one more chili to make a bit more spicy hot.)
- 1 tsp. Cumin (not in the recipe but I used it)
- 1 ½ tsp. Salt
- ½ tsp. Jaggery (I did not use it)
- Wash curry leaves and pat dry on a paper towel or leave it in a colander or a strainer to dry the leaves.
- Dry roast peanuts in a pan and keep them aside. I usually remove the skin of the peanuts after roasting but this time, I did not do so.
- In the same pan, dry roast flax seeds on a medium high flame until seeds start to pop. Continue to roast for few more seconds. Seeds will change a shade of color and also once the frequency between each pop decrease, that is when we know all the seeds are roasted. Transfer to a plate and let the seeds cool. Roasting flax seeds was a little tricky as I did not know how long to roast and if all the seeds are roasted. With peanuts or sesame seeds, I usually taste the nuts/seeds to make sure they are roasted.
- Reduce the heat to medium low and dry roast the curry leaves. The leaves should be dehydrated and make sure not to burn the leaves. This takes about 5 minutes. Remove from pan and let them cool.
- Lastly, dry roast the cumin and red chilies. These two ingredients can be roasted together.
- Once all the ingredients are cool, add salt and grind them to together to make a powder.
- Store in an air tight container and store in a cool dry place. I would recommend storing the fridge.
- Serve it with hot rice with some ghee or vegetable oil. I ate mine without oil or ghee, although it tastes yum with ghee!
- I shared some of the podi with one my friends and she tasted it with dosa. She felt it was not spicy enough. After reading her feedback, even I felt I could have added at least anther chili. When I ate it with rice, even I felt I would not have mind a bit more of heat in the powder. Adjust the red chilies according to taste.
- Store the powder in the fridge keep the powder fresh.