Made with bajra flour (pearl millet) and fresh methi (fenugreek leaves), these Bajra Methi Appe are an easy and delicious breakfast or snack dish. These are vegan and gluten-free and full of nutrition from millets and leafy green vegetables.
Winters are here and it’s the season for fresh leafy vegetables! As soon as they start to come, I will find any excuse to add them to roti flour, or curries, or make them into saag. Just last week fenugreek leaves (methi) started coming from the nearby farms and I came across this recipe for Bajra Methi appe.
Fasting and Navratri Recipes
It was Navratri time during which many people don’t take wheat or rice. In our local newspaper, there was a feature article on light and delicious Navratri breakfast and snack recipes where this bajra appe recipe was also there. Perfect timing for me to try :-). They came out so delicious that after the first time, I’ve made many variations in the simple recipe in terms of more veggies and different spice combinations.
This recipe is like a merger of North and South Indian cuisines. Bajra and Methi is a quintessential winter combination in Rajasthani cuisine (like these Bajra Methi puris). And Appe (also called Paniyaram) are popular South Indian breakfast meals. Appe are steamed fluffy pancakes, traditionally made with fermented rice and lentil batter like that for Idli. But in this recipe, there is no need to keep the batter for fermentation overnight. Just about an hour in a warm place is enough. So it is quite an instant appe recipe.
Paniyaram pan/ Appe Pan
The batter is steamed in a special pan with very little oil. The appe pan is actually quite versatile in many cuisines. I actually learnt that when I was looking for the pan in US and found a Takoyaki pan instead which looked the same! The Dutch make Poffertjes in the same pan and the Burmese make Mont lin maya. What will you make in this pan?
Methi Bajra Appe (Bajra Breakfast Recipe)
Ingredients (1cup = 240ml; 1tbsp = 15ml; 1tsp = 5ml)
- 1 cup Bajra flour pearl millet four
- ½ cup coconut yogurt whisked (can also use regular yogurt for a vegetarian recipe)
- ½ cup water
- 1 cup fresh fenugreek leaves chopped (don't use the stalk)
- ¼ cup fresh coriander leaves chopped
- 1 inch fresh ginger peeled and grated
- 1 green chili finely chopped (adjust to taste)
Spices (I used all of these but simple salt is also enough if you don’t have these)
- 1 tsp fennel seeds lightly crushed
- 1 tsp coriander seeds lightly crushed
- ½ tsp black sesame seeds
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- ½ tsp salt or to taste
- ½ tsp garam masala powder or to taste
- 1 tsp Fruit Salt like Eno
- 1 tbsp oil for cooking
- In a bowl, mix together bajra flour, yogurt, salt, and water to make a thick and smooth batter. Cover and keep it aside for at least an hour, preferably in a warm place.
- After an hour, add fenugreek leaves, coriander leaves, ginger, green chili and all the spices to the batter. Mix well.
- Put the appe pan on medium heat and add a drop of oil in each of the cavity.
- Add eno to the bajra methi batter, mix once and drop spoonfuls of the batter into the prepared appe pan.
- Cover and cook for 3-4 minutes on one side. Open and add a drop of oil on the top of each of the appe and flip to cook the other side. *
- Cover and cook the other side also for another 3-4 mins.
- *A good way to know if the bottom side is cooked is that the batter would have left the sides and can easily be flipped with a spoon.
- Spices: I used all the spices listed in the ingredients but feel free to add or omit spices. Just salt is also enough as the fresh greens, chilies, and ginger add in lot of flavor too.
- For more flavor and nutrition, add grated carrots, chopped spring onion greens or any other seasonal vegetable to the batter.
- Nutritional Information is an approximate value for 1 of 4 servings (~5 appe). The tool I use didn’t have Bajra flour for input so I have used a generic millet flour to calculate nutritional information.
Paniyaram or appe is quite a versatile dish and different grains can be used to make the batter. Like this recipe has fenugreek leaves, other seasonal vegetables can also be added to the batter. If you want to add veggies like carrots, onions, capsicums etc, cut them very small or better grate them.
Quite often, I also use semolina (called sooji or rava in Hindi) to make instant rava appe but these Bajra-methi appe are this season’s favorite. Bajra is a winter crop and eaten only during these 4-5 months from October to January so I want to make the most of it through different Bajra recipes.
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