TEETHING DUMPLINGS / TEETHING CAKE (Kozhukattai / Kollattai)
Even though known as Teething Dumpling, these Dumplings make a light delicious Tea Time Treat.
I seem to recollect a peculiar ritual that was quite prevalent in Kolar Gold Fields in the olden days to mark the appearance of a baby’s first tooth. Since the Worker population in KGF in those days was predominantly ‘Tamil’ this ritual could be just an off shoot of a Tamil Custom that the Tamillian servants and domestic helpers eased into the Anglo-Indian households there. There is always much excitement when a little child especially the first born, cuts its first tooth. To mark this historic event in the child’s life a special sweet rice dumplings (called ‘Kozhukattai or Kolakattai’ in Tamil) was prepared. The baby’s grandmother would sit on a low stool with the baby on her lap. An umbrella would be held over them and all these dumplings sometimes stuffed with coins would be rained over the umbrella. The niehgbourhood children would be invited to gather as many dumplings as they could and they would get to eat the dumplings and keep the coins as well. The baby in whose honour this ritual was held was also fed some of the Dumplings. I don’t know if many of you will remember this ritual or whether it was just a ‘Happy Happening’ in KGF. Anyway here is the recipe for Sweet Rice Teething Dumplings or Kozhukattai or Kollattai. It seems it is also known as Teething Cake in Burma!!!
RECIPE FOR TEETHING DUMPLINGS / TEETHING CAKE (Kozhukattai / Kollattai)Ingredients :
1 cup plain white flour / maida
1 cup Rice flour
½ teaspoon baking soda / bicarbonate of soda
1 tablespoon cooking oil
1 cup grated coconut
2 tablespoons sugar
A pinch of salt
Mix all the above ingredients together with enough water to make a smooth dough. Take little lumpsof the dough and make into oval shaped dumplings with the impression / indent of the 5 fingers on them.
Boil water in a suitable pot or vessel. When the water reaches boiling point, drop in the dumplings. They will initially sink but will rise as they cook. Simmer for at least 10 minutes after the dumplings float to the top. Remove the dumplings from the boiling water and keep aside to cool. These dumplings can be served as a Tea time treat.