Wednesday, 14 December 2011




     1)    Fully mature unripe Robusta banana – 1 kg.

     2)    Hot red chili powder – 1½ teaspoons
     3)    Rice powder – 1 tablespoon
     4)    Asafoetida powder – 5 teaspoon
     5)    Powdered salt – 1 level teaspoon
     6)    Any cooking oil – to deep fry (coconut oil gives best taste)

To Make:

          Use a sharp knife to remove a very thin layer of the outer skin off the peel of the banana, without removing the fleshy part of the peel. Now slice each banana lengthwise into 3 to 5 long slices depending on the thickness of the banana. The thickness of each slice should not be less than 7 mm.

          Transfer the pieces to a bowl and sprinkle the powdered salt, the chili powder and the asafoetida powder. Mix well with your fingers (use a glove if you have sensitive skin). Now sprinkle the rice powder. Mix again quite nicely.

          Set a wok on high heat. pour in the cooking oil. As soon as the oil is hot (about to smoke), put in the banana pieces one by one taking care not to crowd the wok. When the bottom side is fried, flip over to fry the other side. If the banana is fully mature, it will puff up a bit. You can feel the outside of the podi getting hard and crispy. Lift out and drain all the excess oil. Serve hot. The inside will be soft. The podi will be both hard and soft at the same time. The peel will have a distinct texture and taste.

          You will love this Robusta podi and learn to adjust the salt and the heat to suit your taste. The Robusta podi goes very well with porridge, cherupayar kanji and rice gruel. You won’t need any other accompaniment. If you are planning to eat the Robusta podi just by itself, you need to use a bit less salt and chili powder.

          The Robusta podi can be made using any variety of Robusta bananas such as Grand Naine, Williams, Giant Cavendish, Dwarf Cavendish, Sreemantini, Basrai and also with curry banana such as Mondan or Tezhutani.
Bon appétit!!!

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