|Paatra, patra, पत्रा, पतौड़े, colocasia leaf spirals|
Paatra or colocasia leaf spirals are steamed and fried delicacies from Gujarati cuisine. Nutritious colocassia leaves are stuffed with sweet, tangy and spicy gram flour (besan) mixture. Depending on the size of the leaves you can get spirals or mini rolls. Traditionally these rolls are steamed and then fried with a tempering, giving a unique texture. When making these remember to always roll tightly and do not omit the tempering. Serve them as a starter or a dinner accompaniment.
I have made some changes to the traditional recipe of patra. The filling is full of garlic, lots of it and I usually don't steam these. I prefer the green color and the crisp texture of these tiny spirals that is acquired by tava frying.
|Fresh Colacassia Leaves|
20 large colocassia leaves
olive/vegetable/sesame oil for tava frying (I use olive oil)
For spicy stuffing
2 cups besan
1 tsp ginger and green chili paste
1 tbsp (yes tablespoon) garlic paste
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
chili powder and salt to taste
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
2 tsp sesame seeds
|Stuffing and wrapping paatra|
- Wash the leaves and pat them dry.
- Place them with the vein side facing you on a dry cutting board and remove the middle thick vein using a sharp knife. This will help with tight smooth rolling.
- Prepare the besan batter by mixing all the stuffing ingredients together and making it into a thick spreadable batter using water.
- Place a leaf with its tip facing left on the cutting board, spread the besan mixture on it, place a second leaf on top with its tip facing the opposite direction right. This will create an even base for rolling. Now spread the besan mixture on the second leaf.
- Repeat this with three more leaves. Fold it burrito style as shown in the picture above.
- At this point you can decide to steam these rolls for 20 minutes and then proceed as follows. OR you can omit steaming and go to the next step.
- Cut small spirals about an inch thick carefully.
- Heat a non stick flat bottomed pan to medium heat. Spread some oil (1-2 tsp) and add mustard seeds and sesame seeds. Place the spirals on the tempering and cook at medium heat for 5-8 minutes till crisp. Spray some oil on top of the spirals, sprinkle some more sesame seeds and turn over. Cook on the second side for a further 5-8 minutes till crisp.
- Serve them as a starter or a dinner accompaniment garnished with fresh chopped coriander and grated coconut.