Updated post on 9-1-2017
I have prepared a batch of murukku for Chinese New Year. Since many readers like murukku, bought murukku for Chinese New Year but do not have the mould or are afraid of the deep frying part, I decided to try if this can be piped.
The answer is yes. It will not deformed because of the chickpea powder. It is less crispy than the deep fried murukku though I think it can be more crispy if I wanted it to be by baking longer at low temperature.
The next question is a piped flower shape wised to be crispy until hard? For me definitely no. I found that murukku can become hard if it is overbaked. Today’s experiment with shape yield a rather sandy murukku. If you want crispier results, you can:0
- bake longer
- deep fry the murukku after baking again.
- piped into other thinner shapes
I personally prefer this version as what I want is the unique taste of murukku in cookies form. The decision is yours.
Updated post 16-9-2016
I tried to bake the murukku and it works. I have updated the recipe in red. Timing is estimation but the general rule of thumb is to bake until crispy. In this case, one can also use air fryer to bake.
Since I issued my putu mayam recipe a few months ago, I have wanted to issue murukku recipe but I have procrastinated until today. This is because the preparation is using the same type of press.. In fact, I have bought the chickpea flour the next day after my issuance of putu mayam recipe. If you are interested in the putu mayam recipe, you can refer to this post: Putu Mayam aka Putu Mayang aka Idiyappam (இடியாப்பம்)
As per Wikipedia:
“Murukku is a savoury, crunchy Indian snack. The snack originated in the Tamil Nadu state, and its name derives from the Tamil word for “twisted” (Tamil: முறுக்கு), which refers to its shape. Murukku is popular all over India, and also in other countries where Tamil diaspora is present: Sri Lanka, Singapore and Malaysia. Murukku is typically made from rice flour and urad dal flour. It is sometimes called “chakli”; chakli is a similar dish, typically made with an additional ingredient, bengal gram (chickpea) flour.” (Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murukku)
If you Google the recipe of murukku and read the definition of Wikipedia in details, you will note that there are two types. One is using chickpea aka besan flour (occasionally called chakli) and another type is using rice flour . Whether rice flour version or chickpea flour version, they are all using the same type of spices. This recipe uses chickpea flour and you can easily get it in Indian provision shop.
A close look on the image search of murukku will tell you there are two types. One is shape like those in this post and another is the smooth type usually with green pea added. In Singapore and Malaysia, both shapes are savoury but some Indian members said that the star shape murukku is sweet whereas the star shape is savoury. Whatever it is, both are called murukku and you can use either shape for this recipe.
For Murruku recipe, there are two spices that were used in almost all recipes. One is cumin seed. I have used some cumin seeds but I have difficulty to press it out and it stuck in the holes of the presser. Therefore, what I suggested is if you are using cumin seeds, you will need to pound it until fine. Alternatively, you can use cumin powder which is very easy to get from the supermarket.
Another spice is omum aka ajwain or carom seeds . For this spice, I have omitted as I cannot get hold of it after searching for two spice stores in my wet market. Probably it is because of the fact that I did not used this, though delicious, the taste is still slightly different from the store bought. Therefore, I would advise all to search for these seeds before trying the recipe.
Preparation is much simpler than I thought. I found that it is easy to press too. It is fast, easy to deep fry without splashing and taste is good .. My wife is so happy with this batch that she brought some to share with her office colleagues. The only disappointment that I have is I am unable to press it neatly into a circle .. Possibly because I am nervous and i saw some recipe requires to press the dough into some banana leaves before transferring them into the hot oil. For me, i used the rather traditional method of pumping directly into the hot oil. Well the choice is up to the readers.
For this recipe, you will need a press with the star pattern or normal hole pattern. I understand you can get this press easily in Indian shop or bakery shop. I get mine from a Sarawak bakery shop.
WHAT IS REQUIRED
Servings: Prepare one small Chinese New Year cookies jar of murukku
- 125 grams of besan or chickpea flour *
- 30 grams of ghee， butter or cooking oil, softened
- 50 grams of plain water *
- 1/2 teaspoon of ajwain or carom seeds
- 1/2 teaspoons of jeera or cumin seeds or cumin powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of white pepper powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of chilli powder (optional)
- Pinches of baking soda (optional)
- 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric powder
* You can use 100% chickpea flour or 100% rice flour or 50% chickpea flour and 50% rice flour
**Plain water volume is estimated and you have to add gradually until it forms a pliable dough as every batch of besan flour will have different water absorbing properties.
STEPS OF PREPARATION
- Mix all the dry ingredients and softened butter in a bowl, use hand to lightly rub until it resembles bread crumbles. Add water GRADUALLY and lightly knead until it forms a pliable dough. If it is too wet, add more chickpea flour tablespoon by tablespoon. If it is too dry, add water tablespoon by tablespoon.
- Heat up a pot of hot oil using medium heat.
- Pinch a dough, shape round and stuff into the murukku press cavity. Press the dough down into the hot oil on a circular motion. Once it is about 4 cm in diameter, cut off the dough and pump another. Do not touch the murukku for the first 2 minutes as it will disintegrate the dough before the fritters harden. Deep fry the murukku until golden brown. Prior to dishing out for draining, turn the heat to high for one minute. Drain and once cooled completely, store in an air tight container.
- For baking, pump the murukku onto the baking tray. Baked in the pre-heated oven of 150 degree Celsius until crispy. For this batch, it took me about 45 minutes. Timing is for reference and it will depend on the thickness of the murukku. Unlike deep frying, the colour tone of baked murukku are lighter than deep frying version.
I am happy with this recipe. Remember to add water gradually and if you are able to get hold of ajwain seeds, please use it . May be you need to dry fry for a while and lightly pound it before adding to the flour. Otherwise, it may obstruct pressing out smoothly. Whether rice flour or chickpea flour, you will have to decide . Lastly, if you are unwilling to invest in a Muruku press, you can try to use a piping bag fit with a small star nozzle, that may be able to work also.
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