Sabudana is tapioca pearls, which is used in bubble tea and in javarassi payasam. It is gluten-free. A lot of people are not a big fan of Sabudana because if not cooked properly, it is gooey (not in a good way) and sticky. For the longest time, I would not eat sabudana and will still not eat the payasam. My colleague and friend, Shruti, makes sabudana kichdi which is a popular snack in Maharashtra. It is usually eaten before fasting as it is very filling and high in carbs. I really liked her khichdi and tried to make it a couple of times and it would turn out sticky and into one huge mass. She gave me a few tips which help and now, I am proud to say, that it comes out really well. This is her recipe with minor tweaks. Thank you Shruti!
- 1 cup sabudana (tapioca pearls)
- 2 onions chopped
- 2 potatoes chopped
- 1-2chillies chopped
- ½ tsp chopped ginger (optional)
- ½ cup roasted peanuts
- ¼ grated fresh coconut
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- Salt to taste
- ¼ tsp sugar
- Juice of 1lime
- Garnish: cilantro
- Rinse sabudana and soak in one cup of water for 6-8 hours.
- Using your fingers wash and rinse sabudana 2-3 times to remove the starch.
- Drain and keep aside. To see if it is soaked well, press a pearl with your fingers; if soft, it is ready to cook.
- Coarsely powder the peanuts
- Mix the peanuts, sugar, and coconut with the sabudana
- In a pan, heat oil and add cumin seeds. When they crackle and get slightly brown (not burnt), add the onions and saute.
- When onions are golden brown, add chillies, ginger, and potatoes and saute till potatoes are cooked. (Traditionally, boiled potatoes are added but I prefer to fry it)
- Add sabudana mixture and mix until well combined. Cover for a minute or two. Mix it once or twice. When the sabudana becomes translucent, it is cooked. (Be very careful at this stage as it can go from cooked to mush and sticky very soon and you may end up with a lump)
- Remove pan from heat and add the lemon juice and mix. Garnish with cilantro and serve hot.