One of the, or rather the basic ingredient for this dish is soaked sago.
Soaking of sago, itself requires little technique. The quantity of water depends on what type of sago, you are using. In market there are various sizes available. The basic one is of size equal to mustard seeds. That type is not suitable for this dish. The next size is of about 1.5 mm diameter.
This is most commonly available. To soak them you need to add cold water to them and drain them immediately. The drained sago pearls absorb the moisture and swell in size, after 2 to 3 hours.
Sometimes even bigger size, say 2 mm is available in market. (I have used these.) To soak them, you need to add fresh water but instead of draining
The water completely, you can keep some water in (just up to the level of sago pearls, not more.) They will absorb all the water, within 3 to 4 hours.
Before starting this dish, separate the pearls by slowly moving your fingers thru them. In case your fingers get wet with water, you need to add more groundnuts (roasted and crushed) than the given quantity.
Hence the ingredients are :-
- 1) Soaked sago pearls, 2 cups,
- 2) Roasted, peeled and crushed groundnuts 1 to 1 ½ cups,
- 3) A small cucumber,
- 4) A medium sized potato,
- 5) 1 teaspoon roasted cumin seeds,
- 6) 3 to 4 green chilies chopped or crushed,
- 7) 1 to 2 teaspoons, red chili powder,
- 8) Salt to taste,
- 9) ½ teaspoon sugar
- 10) Ghee (clarified butter)as required,
- 11) For accompanying green chutney, 5 green chilies, 1 cup fresh coconut, ½ cup roasted peanuts, ½ cup chopped coriander, juice of half lime, salt & sugar to taste.
To make Thalipith
1) Separate the soaked sago pearls by your fingers and break the lumps, if any.
2) Add crushed peanuts, cumin seeds, salt & sugar to all of it.
3) Divide the mixture into two parts.
4) Peel the cucumber and grate it, using the fine grater. Squeeze almost all of the juice (reserve it for later use).
5) Add crushed green chilies to grated cucumber and break the lumps, add one part of sago mixture and mix it well by your fingers. Do not overdo it. If you feel the mixture is too dry, add one or two teaspoons of the cucumber juice, which was kept aside.
6) Take a non stick pan and apply little ghee on it. Spread this sago mixture on it and give it a desired shape, with help of a spatula. The thickness should be less than 1 cm.
7) Put the pan on low flame and cover the Thalipith with a lid. (The lid should not be touching the Thalipith.)
8) After two minutes, remove the lid. By this time the sago pearls would have turned opaque (if not, wait for a while). Shake the pan to check if it moves easily and then carefully turn it over. Drop few drops of ghee around the edges and let it get crispy on both the sides. (In case you think that a bigger size Thalipith would be difficult to turn, you may make 2 smaller ones, instead.)
9) Peel and mash the boiled potato, add red chili powder to it and mix with the remaining sago mixture. Repeat the same process, to make the second red Thalipith.
10) To make accompanying green chutney, grind together all the ingredients. You may add little curds to it, if preferred.
Enjoy the hot and crispy Thalipith with chutney.