Aug 30, 2011

Kerala Banana Chips / Kele Baluk

Kerala Banana Chips / Kele Baluk

Celebrate Onam festival with homemade banana chips !!!!!

Kerala chips are ubiquitous in every town in South India, and bigger towns in North India. Due to their crispness and sweet / salty taste, they are also very addictive and those who have tasted them once will never forget the taste.

In Kerala, they are inevitable part of every celebration, and all time favorite snack; which is savored equally by kids as well as the elders. It also Tops the Onam essentials.

While these are available at the neighborhood shops, or even in branded, vacuum packed bags in supermarkets; these can also be prepared at home in smaller quantities, with a unique home made taste also ensuring quality (especially, quality of cooking oil).

You will need

3 raw bananas (Kerala bananas / nenthrakkay / ethakkay)
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons water
500 ml oil for frying


Dilute turmeric powder and salt in water and keep aside with a teaspoon ready.

Wash banana and wipe with a kitchen towel. Cut off both tips of banana to lightly expose the flesh. Make 3 to 4 surgical – vertical incisions on each bananas with a sharp knife without damaging the inner core and gently peel off the skin ( useful tip: this skin of raw banana is used in Konkani cuisine to make dishes like Kele sali upkari, Gassi and Elichikari). Once the skin is peeled off, immerse the core of banana in fresh / clean water ( else the core may blacken due to oxidation in contact with air).

Once all the bananas are peeled, take out one core at a time, wipe off water with kitchen towel or paper napkin and slice into thin chips of desired thickness using a sharp knife or chip slicer ( careful when using sharp objects). Fry banana chips in batches ( as per convenience depending upon the size of pan).

Heat oil in a pan. Sprinkle one batch of raw chips in such a way that each chips lands in oil one at a time without sticking to one another (be aware of potential for oil splashing while doing this. Keep safe distance). Using slotted ladle or spoon, gently stir separating the chips from sticking. At this point, add a teaspoon (adjust this quantity as per the batch size of chips and how salty one wants the chips to be) of turmeric – salt water mix. Adjust heat to medium – high (too low heat may result in soft chips, and too high will burn / blacken the chips). Keep frying chips occasionally stirring; till golden color and crisp.

Drain off the chips from oil, keep in kitchen paper to absorb extra oil. Allow to cool down to room temperature. Store in an airtight container.

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