IntroductionMany people may not be aware of this local recipe which belongs to Kumaun region of Uttarakhand state of our country. This snack dish is generally prepared during festivals or functions in the house. It is also offered to God as prasadam during puja times.
This recipe is known as 'Singal' in local language. It is mostly used as a snack item. The main ingredient of this dish is semolina or rice flour. The method is same whether you use semolina or rice flour. The quantity shown is for preparing of 2 numbers of medium sized singals. This will constitute as 2 servings.
MethodTake Semolina or Rice flour in a bowl. Add Desi Ghee to it and mix well. Add curd and sprinkle a little milk to make a thick batter. Keep aside for half an hour.
Now add cardamom powder, anise, cashew, baking soda and sugar to it and beat it till it is fluffy. More fluffy it is, the softer the Singal will be. The consistency of this batter should be such that when you through it for frying it should leave your hand easily. This is essential as Singal is to be placed by hand in a Kadai or Wok (frying vessel) for frying. This is the general way it is prepared in Kumaun region. Alternatively one can use a cotton cloth with a 1/2 inch hole in center for dropping the batter in desired shape into a frying vessel.
Heat oil in a Kadai. Once oil is heated take the batter in your folded palm and slowly drop it in the oil in the center of vessel and try to move your hand in a clockwise direction so that the shape of batter in the oil takes a helical form like the most common sweet item Jalebi. Only difference is that in Jalebi the thickness is small while in Singal it is about 1/2 to 3/4 inch. Generally two clockwise rounds are sufficient to produce a medium size Singal.
For the beginners it is advised to use a cotton cloth of about 1 ft x 1 ft size and make a 1/2 inch hole in center and keep the batter in it and fold it from all sides and squeeze when placing the batter in heated oil in the frying vessel.
After placing the batter in the desired shape keep the heating to medium and deep fry the Singal on both the sides. Once ready this will have a brown to dark brown color.
ServingAs these are deep fried items they can be served hot as well as after some time. Many people prefer them as snacks with tea or coffee. They are sometimes consumed with curd or Raita in the typical Kumauni style. Though Singal is a snack item but it goes well along with the main course in lunch or dinner time.
One medium size Singal is sufficient as 1 serving.
ConclusionSingal is a local dish of Kumaun region and has a unique taste. Those who have interest in trying new recipes can try this as a surprise change in the usual snacks in the house.
Regional recipes are popular within their area, though there are recipes which have gone out of their origin place and became so popular that they became national level recipes. Aaloo parotha, idli, dosa and samosas are some examples.
It is a fresh feeling when you see a new recipe of a area. It gives us new ideas and motivation to experiment with it.