Makes: 1 puttu
1 cup / 200 g (Indian standard measuring cup of 200 ml / 8 oz capacity) whole wheat atta ( do not dry roast whole wheat atta )
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup grated coconut ( you can reduce the quantity of grated coconut )
Take a big flat bowl. Add 1 cup whole wheat atta and salt. Sprinkle water and mix it with fingers. Mix it slowly so that it won't roll into small balls.
Break any whole wheat balls which forms during mixing. Spray water little by little. ( Please note that to mix a cup of whole wheat atta, one may not need more than 1/5th of a cup of water).
After mixing atta; the mixture should be just wet or moistened atta (un- like chapatti dough or batter for dosa). Whole wheat atta should not be dry but wet enough for steaming . Keep aside for half an hour.
Fill this whole wheat atta mixture in Puttu maker / gadget for making puttu. This puttu maker / gadget will essentially have a sieve at the bottom. Place a 5 mm layer of grated coconut at the bottom.
The filling should be in such a way that a 5 mm thick layer of grated coconut should be layered every 3 – 4 inch thickness ofwhole wheat mixture; while filling. Top it with liberal layer of coconut scraping.
Steam it on the pressure cooker on medium flame for 5-8 minutes till a consistent stream of steam emanates from the top of puttu maker. Push the puttu from the puttu maker with the help of a thin rod. Serve with payaru / kadala curry / pappadam / pazham (ripe banana)..
Important while filling: Do not apply pressure on the filling. The filling should be packed loosely inside the puttumaker. Else the puttu will come out like a missile (there will be a pressure built up beneath it and steam will not pass through it) and will end up as a big disaster.
Wholewheat (Gothambu) Chiratta (Coconut shell) Puttu
In olden days puttu was made in cut pieces of bamboo or in coconut shell ( In Kerala it is known as Chiratta puttu ). The eye on the coconut shell will provide an opening for the steam to cook the puttu. The other day I came across a puttu mould in the shape of coconut shell. It can be placed on top of pressure cooker ( where the weight is placed ) and steam for 7 minutes on a medium heat ( reduce the heat to medium after releasing full steam and steam for 5 minutes ). Stainless steel Chiratta puttu mould available at Santhosh Super Store & Chakson Show room, Anna Nagar, Chennai.