Ragi Sev / Savory Finger Millet Bites

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Diwali, the Indian festival of lights, is fast approaching. In the run up to Diwali, most Hindu households are busy preparing for the festival. It is during this time that a number of Sweets and Savories are cooked up to serve Family and visitors and put on platters to give to neighbors and friends. Even though we don’t celebrate Diwali, the food and the fire work displays are my favorite part of the festival. Back in India, we had a few neighbors who put together the most fantastic platters full of homemade Indian sweets (called Mithai) and savories (called Namkeen / Farsaan) and I’d look forward to them every single year.

After moving to Sydney, I have tried to replicate a few of these recipes and I was pleasantly surprised with how easy a lot of them are to make. Over the weekend I decided to try out some Ragi Sev. Ragi = Finger Millet and Sev = crispy fried noodles. So this Ragi sev is a savory option for Diwali. With a few ingredients you could be sitting down to a bowlful of these to serve up in about half an hour. I’ve been meaning to try out some snacking options using Finger Millet for a while now. And I’m glad I started with this recipe. It was so easy to make and the flavor was unbelievably yummy. So if you are looking to try out some different recipes this Diwali, try these out. I promise you, it’ll be hard to keep eager hands off the place as you fry them up and wait for it to cool. I had to chase my husband out of the kitchen on a number of occasions, just so that I’d have enough left to photograph for the post. That, according to me, is a very successful recipe.
Make a batch or 2 over the weekend and serve it up with a hot cup of tea. They’d even be ideal as “Chakna” (nibbles to serve along with Beer or other drinks).
Ragi Sev
1/2 cup rice flour
1/4 cup roasted gram dal / dalia, powdered
A pinch of Asafoetida / hing
1 tsp sesame seeds
1/2 tsp red chilly powder
2 tbsp ghee / clarified butter
Salt, to taste
Oil, to deep fry
Heat oil in a kadhai / wok large enough to deep fry. (If you don’t have one, you can also use a large saucepan / pot.) The oil level should be about 1/3 the height of the vessel, approximately. (Note, this is just a guide, incase you have never deep fried anything before. If you have, use the quantities that work well for you.)
In a large pan over medium heat, dry roast the finger millet flour till you start getting a mild nutty aroma. This typically takes a couple of minutes.
Place the finger millet flour, rice flour, gram dal powder, asafoetida, red chilly powder, sesame seeds, ghee and salt in a bowl. Mix the ingredients thoroughly.
Using a little water at a time, mix and knead to form a soft dough.
Place the dough in a Sev Press and carefully pipe out portions in the hot oil.
This is the plate I used to make the sev
Do not over crowd the pan. You may need to fry the sev in batches. When the sizzle and bubbles subside in the oil, carefully remove the sev using a slotted spoon. Drain the excess oil off and place on a platter lined with kitchen paper to get rid of any excess oil.
Cool completely and store in an airtight container.
Pin now and try later.

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