Appala Kootu

Appalam making is a leading cottage industry prevalent in my maternal grandfather’s village. As a kid I was completely awestruck watching women & girls in our neighbourhood kneading mountainous dough, rolling appalam at lightning speed, and stacking dried appalam like a tower.  Whenever I was upset with my cousins or siblings I used to run to one of those houses and spend endless hours there watching them making appalam while enjoying their warmth & the food. During my mother’s recent visit there, they fondly remembered my childhood favorite appala-poo and prepared them along with appalam specially for me, even though they are not into this business currently.

Their enduring affection triggered me to post this recipe for appala kootu that I relished for the first time in their house. So far I have not seen anyone in our family making this delicious kootu, yet I tried to replicate the same and the recipe is as below:


Yields : 1 cup


  1. Bengal gram (split chickpea/ kadalai paruppu) – ½ cup (100 g)
  2. Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
  3. Water for cooking lentils – 1 cup (200 ml)
  4. Salt – ½ tsp
  5. Appalam (papad) – 5 Nos.


For grinding:

  1. Coconut pieces – 7 (each 1 inch)
  2. Cumin seeds – ¼ tsp
  3. Red chilli powder – 1 tsp
  4. Shallots – 7 Nos.

For tempering:

  1. Coconut Oil – 1 tsp
  2. Mustard seeds – ¼ tsp
  3. Split black gram (vellai ulundhu paruppu) – ½ tsp (optional)
  4. Curry leaves – a few
  5. Asafoetida powder (hing/ perung-kaya podi) – ¼ tsp


Cooking Method:

  • Wash lentils & soak for an hour.
  • Heat a cooking bowl in high flame after adding lentils, water & turmeric powder into it.
  • When water begins to boil, reduce the flame to medium.
  • Meanwhile fry appalam in hot oil and keep aside.
  • Prepare coconut paste & tempering as shown below and keep them
  • When lentils are cooked soft add coconut paste, salt & water (100 ml) and bring it to a boil.
  • Add crushed appalam and give a quick stir.
  • Remove from flame.
  • Add tempering and mix well.
  • Now appala kootu is ready to serve.


Appala kootu goes well with paruppu & puli-kuzhambu (any kara-kuzhambu or rasam).



57 Comments Add yours

  1. My Real Dish says:

    Perfect veggie dish loaded with protein!

    1. Megala says:

      Thank you !

  2. Sounds delicious!!!

    1. Megala says:

      Thank you !

  3. I was never aware that kootu can be made with appalums. This is new for knowledge for me. The dal makes it healthy and complete. Will try this, Megala.

  4. Absolutely delicious. My Mum made these when I was a child & I guess I have completely forgotten.. The next time I fry a batch of appalams, I am surely going to try these.

    1. Megala says:

      Nice to hear this, thanks Vidya !

  5. This is absolutely new to me, I have never heard of the addition of papad to curry, will definitely try 👍

    1. Megala says:

      I’m sure you will like it ! Thank you !!

  6. Aruna says:

    What a lovely post with all its memories and unique recipe!

    1. Megala says:

      Nice to hear this from you, it means a lot ! Thank you !!

  7. This dish is entirely new to me, but now I wonder how I’ve gone so long without it! Sounds and looks amazing!

    1. Megala says:

      Yes, it is absolutely delicious ! Thank you !!

  8. Very nice post!

    1. Megala says:

      Thank you !

  9. What a unique recipe! Such wonderful childhood memories too!

    1. Megala says:

      Yes, sure it is ! Thank you !!

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