Tuesday, 9 August 2016




          Finger millet or ragi is one of the healthiest cereals (for details, see my sweet nanchana bakri recipe and nanchana dudali recipe) on earth. Konkani people make delicious, sweet nanchana bakri using ragi, jaggery (cane sugar) and ripe bananas.

As I started making the sweet bakris in order to share the recipe with you, my husband asked me to make some savoury nanchana bakris too, for diabetic persons; so they too could enjoy the goodness of finger millet in all the delicious taste of the sweet nanchana bakri, but without the sugar, which is off limits to diabetics (in fact, it was the ravages of diabetes that took my father’s life).

I promptly made some hot, savoury nanchana bakris which turned out so good, they just disappeared in minutes with no side dish or pickle whatsoever. The only requirement to enjoy these bakris is that they have to be served hot and fresh. Here is the recipe for you!

Ingredients (to make 5 bakris):

     1)    Ragi (finger millet / muthari in Malayalam / nanchano in Konkani) powder – 250 gm.
     2)    Grated coconut – 75 gm.
     3)    Hot green chilies – 10 gm.
     4)    Tender curry leaves – 2 sprigs
     5)    Salt – 5 gm.
     6)    Water – 150 ml.
     7)    Banana leaf pieces of around 8” x 8” (20 cm. x 20 cm.) – 10 Nos.

To cook:

          Chop the green chilies and the curry leaves to superfine bits. Put all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix nicely. Knead the dough well and make 5 ragi balls.

Keep a banana leaf on the table. Set a ragi ball in the center and cover with another leaf. Press down lightly with your palm to flatten the ball a little. Now roll a rolling pin over the upper leaf, turning the leaf clockwise a bit after each rolling, so as to flatten the roll evenly to around 3 mm. (⅛ inch to ⅙ inch) thickness. Set aside the leaf sandwich and finish the remaining ragi balls likewise.


Set a flat pan (or two) on high heat. Put the ragi leaf sandwich carefully onto the hot pan. Cover with a cloche and lower the heat. Let the bakri cook slowly for 5 minutes. Now lift up the cloche and flip over the leaf sandwich. Cover again and let cook for 5 more minutes. Remove the cloche and gently peel off the upper leaf (if well cooked, the leaf will peel off easily). Flip over and remove the second leaf too. Roast each side for just a minute or two. Serve hot. To make it even more tasty, soft and protein rich, pour a cup of thick, hot dali toye over your delicious savoury nanchana bakri and enjoy!


          Finger millet contains enough fibre to make you feel a fuller stomach for a longer time. It helps keep the gnawing hunger often felt by diabetics at bay while providing a fat free, cholesterol free, bowel relaxant diet.

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