Kerala Palappam


Appam is a type of South Indian pancake made with fermented rice batter and coconut milk. It is a popular food in South Indian states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu.The way it is made in both the states differ a lot. It is also very popular in SriLanka where it is commonly referred to by its anglicized name as Hoppers. It is eaten most frequently for breakfast or dinner.

It is a staple diet and a cultural synonym of the Nasranis (also known as Saint Thomas Christians or Syrian Christians) of Kerala, India.Milk hoppers or Palappam has a crisp lacy edge from being cooked in curved pans like woks.When cooked, the middle portion is firm to the touch but remains soft inside and is tastier as a result of the coconut milk/coconut.


  • Raw rice ( Pachari) – 1.5 cups
  • Grated coconut – 3/4 cup ,heaped
  • Cooked Rice – 1/2 cup
  • Sugar- 1.5 to 3 tbsp(adjust to your taste)
  • Yeast – 1/4 tsp
  • Water – 1.5 cups
  • Salt-  to taste


  • Wash the rice well and soak it for about 4 to 5 hours.
  • Grind together drained raw rice, grated coconut , cooked rice and 3/4 cup water to form a smooth batter.
    • You can adjust the quantity of water depending upon the type of rice you use.(normally pachari is used).Basically the batter should be a bit watery so that the edges turn out really thin.
  • Add in sugar,yeast and remaining water and mix for about 30 seconds or until sugar and yeast is completely dissolved.Adding sugar also aids in getting crispy edges..
  • Transfer the batter to a large bowl.Cover and let it ferment  for about 5 to 8 hours( depending upon the temperature conditions) in a warm place , until almost doubled in volume.I always leave it overnight for better fermentation
  • After fermentation( for about 5 to 8 hours) add salt to taste.Gently stir the salt in.Cover and keep aside for at least 30 minutes.The batter will rise a bit and will be light and foamy.
  • Heat the appachatti over medium high flame.Rub it with some oil if you are using an iron appachatti.( Skip this step if you are using a non stick appachatti.) Gently pour a ladle full of batter into the pan.
  • Immediately swirl the pan to spread the batter in a circle.Cover and cook for about a minute or until the edges turn golden brown.Covering with lid is important else the appam wont get cooked in the middle
  • Carefully remove the appam from the pan.
  • Appam goes well with almost all traditional Kerala non-veg dishes(chicken stew,mutton stew,vegetable stew,egg curry,fish molly etc)




You can also make use of thari kurukiyathu for better fermentation.In this method i haven’t used it..To know about how to make Thari Kurukku.Refer here in the vattayappam recipe.


Anitha Varghese


Posted on December 3, 2014, in Breakfast Items, How to Guide, Rice Varieties and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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