‘Adhirasam’ / ’Ariselu’ is a traditional South Indian sweet prepared on Deepavali. It is prepared using rice flour and jaggery. This sweet can be prepared with sugar also, but since I avoid using sugar as much as possible in my recipes, I have used jaggery. Many find it intimidating to prepare this sweet but actually, this is very easy to prepare, if you follow the tips and steps given properly.
- Raw Rice - 1 kg (Baccharis)
- Jaggery - 3/4 kg
- Cardamom - 6 (remove the pods)
- Oil - for deep frying
First, we will see how to prepare rice flour for making ‘Athirasam’. (I make it very clear that you cannot use ordinary store-bought rice flour to prepare this)
Wash and soak raw rice for 2 hours.
After 2 hours, drain the water completely and spread it on a cloth or paper so that it will absorb the excess water.
After 10 minutes, dry grind the rice nicely (not too fine and not too coarse-in between both) along with cardamom. (Alternatively, you can add cardamom powder to the jaggery syrup also) Sieve it and keep it in a broad vessel. You cannot store this rice flour but have to use it immediately for making Athirasams.
If you have a flour mill near your place, you can get it ground there for Athirasam, which is much easier. I got it ground in the flour mill.
Grate jaggery, add just enough water to soak the jaggery. Bring it to boil, switch off. Once the jaggery dissolves, filter it to remove any impurities.
Boil the jaggery water until you get a softball consistency also known as ‘uruttu padham’ in Tamil. Take a small cup of water, pour a tsp of jaggery syrup into it, if you can collect it and make a softball out of it, then it is the right consistency. Switch off the flame. This is the most important step in making athirasams.
Immediately add needed hot jaggery syrup (little by little) to the rice flour and mix it well with a ladle as you see in the picture below. Cover it with a lid and let it rest. After 4-5 hours, take it out and knead it well with your hands and keep it covered with a tight lid again. Let is rest for 1-2 days. (This dough can be kept for 2 days at room temperature. You do not have to refrigerate the dough).
I left it only for 1 day.
After 1 day
- Take the dough out and knead again. Divide equally and make balls.
- Meantime heat t oil in a Kadai, once the oil is heated, reduce the flame to medium.
- Grease a banana leaf or a plastic cover with ghee and flatten the ball with your hands. You can grease your hands as well to make it easier.
- Take the flattened dough in your hands from the leaf and gently slip it into the oil. Fry both sides till it turns nice brown colour. (Keep the heat in the medium as if the heat is high, it will turn brown immediately but will remain uncooked inside)
- Remove from oil. Athirasam tends to absorb a lot of oil. Press the Athirasam between two slotted ladles to remove excess oil. Then put it in a colander or on a paper towel to drain remaining excess oil.
- Repeat the process for the rest of the dough. Hope I have made everything clear and easy for you.