Friday, November 29, 2013

When I embarked on " Mission Kodubale"......:)

Kodubale is a crispy fried speciality of Karnataka  made with rice flour. Shaped like doughnut, many people say it looks like a bale(bangle in kannada) and so it is named thus. This is one of my favorite snack since childhood and it is easily available in most Bangalore  condiment shops and bakeries. Especially, the iyengar bakeries of Bangalore make some of the best kodubales. 

My  parents home in bangalore was on a lane flanked by Belur iyengars bakery on one side and Hasan iyengar's bakery on the other, I have tasted this snack many times especially when the fresh batches of kodubales are put for sale during 3p.m. This snack was even a favorite with many of my relatives who travelled from other states so much so that when ever they left,  we bought them a packet too or whenever we went to their homes, we made sure a  kodubale packet  traveled with us.

Malti aunty, my parent's neighbour from mysore was an expert in making Karnataka dishes. They would often make it at home, since they observed kosher and never ate outside food. When she made the snacks she would share it with us. My mom learnt the recipe and she  started making them later.  The crispy crunchy and subtly spiced rings would melt in ones mouth . The ingredients for this are simple but the art of frying is very important.

They are available in  the so called Iyengar bakeries of Hyderabad( just brand name, not the original)  but they don't match the taste of the original  kodubale's . So I  had not tasted them for long. I frequently make Bangalore trips but my childhood/teens snack is not on my priority 'To buy'  list. 

      ( Pic courtesy: Google)

But, on my visit to my neighbourhood supermarket last week, i saw  'Maiya's products(MTR) exclusively on a shelf.  I  was tempted and immediately picked up a 100 gms  Kodubale packet from the shelf.

My fussy children too loved the crunchies and so the  packet  was gone in a trice and the taste was close to the ones I had tasted in Bangalore.  

Since my children loved this,  I decided to make these crispies at home yesterday.  The weather was also favorable, it was raining due to Lehar in Coastal AP and so an ideal weather to warm up in kitchen and do some experiment.  After a call to my mother to cross check the ingredients, I embarked on "Mission kodubale". 

My plan was to try  on a small scale  (10-15 nos)first .
 If the mission was a success , i would  make more numbers,  lug in DSLR to click the photos and renew my cookery blog.  Afterall,  It remains untouched since long.     But kodubale had other ideas. It decided If it makes to my cookery blog,  lesser readers would know about it, it instead made it to my 'Musing and rambling' blog . How?

Here goes, "Mission Kodubale"

I mixed the ingredients, like i said on a small scale so, i took a small cup each of flour& rice flour and half a cup chiroti rava.  but on mixing, the dough swelled in  capacity( did'nt anticipate this).

I rolled the dough into thin cylinders, made small ring  patterns , put them in the pre- heated oil. So far was happy with the outcome, a few more minutes and i would head into the balcony  with a plate of crispy hot  kodubale and cup of cinnamon green tea  along with my daughter.

My daughter who is on a pre-board leave, took  a break and just then walked into the kitchen. She  helped me in making roundels with the remaining dough  at the far end of  kitchen platform.

I suddenly remembered   the frying instructions and so lowered the flame to sim so that the interior of the kodubales too would be fried else they would turn raw while the outer turned crispy.  A few seconds later, all i knew was there a pop up from the oil, one of the kodubales had burst out of the oil and was floored, splashing oil all over the kitchen. I,  who was close by felt a few of the minor splashes but my daughter at the far end had a pretty bigger splash on her wrist(nothing serious though). And before we realized, there was another pop and splash, now I bravely switched off the gas and came  out of the kitchen. A  3rd and 4th followed till the 7th. By then we were watching the pops and splashes from the dining hall. 

All but two popped and i was left with two kodubales in the pan and an oily kitchen. The oil though less had splashed till the farthest wooden cabinet.  

After a hearty laughter session( it was real fun when it popped)  and narrating the incident to all our relatives, I ended up cleaning the kitchen with shampoos and washing soda. It will take some more time or may be i will not embark on this mission again. But the mission was not a failure........ it turned out to be an invention of "kodubale dosa".

With the remaining dough, i pulped  them with water in  a mixie and made dosa batter.  The dosa turned out  really crisp like wafers but could make only 6 wafer thin ones. It turned out to be kodubale dosas( like rava dosa) and served as lunch for my teens. 


  1. What an experience making Kodubalais!
    I make them off and on it comes out very tasty. I never like the shop ones,and the Mayias is ok, nothing great.
    I have heard of only Cheedai bursting , one must always keep them covered under a damp cloth, before frying them I am told. Anyway I don't have the patience of rolling so many tiny balls so after making it once I have not made it again. For Koduwalais, my recipe is to add same measure of rice flour, rava( any rava) and maida, and lots of green chillies, sesame seeds, grated coconut and plenty pf fresh coriander and curry leaves chopped, and some butter/ ghee for mixing them together, and of course water.
    I have stopped making this snack also because I get bored makes so many bangles, and also frying them in very low heat.
    However, it is always good to learn some of these snacks and make them at home.
    Nice to read through your experience. Must try out the dosas.

    1. yes rama, there are many variations. I like the ones that are made near my bangalore home and My loyalty towards MTR, my child hood brand:) I used redchilli powder and dessicated coconut. My mom uses pottukadalai maavu( fried grams powder) instead of maida and rava.

      Even my mom and MIL were surprised to hear of kodubale's bursting. They attribute it to unsieved rice flour. They recommend sieving the rice flour before making cheedai or any crispy fries since the shop brought ready made ones may have some stone dust also. I overlooked that instruction and also another reason may be because of the uneven size. was quite an experience:) Thank you Rama,

  2. Thanks for the nice narration. Sounds funny now. But when it was actually happening, it would have been a disaster and frustration.

    1. Thank you, SG. It was the other way round SG. This time, it was fun first and frustration later. Fun to see the kodubales popping at regular intervals and when we thought it had stopped, anothe popped out ........frustration, because i had to clean the oily kitchen.

  3. Asha really enjoyed reading your disastrous experience. Sometimes such situations arise. They sound funny when you narrate them,but in reality if you face a disaster of this sort,it is scary.

    1. Thank you, ma'am. Yes, a disastrous experience and Initially it was scary, since i did'nt expect it to happen but later enjoyed the fun.

  4. Oh ho - even experienced masters can occasionally have a slight problem :)

    By the way, maybe that's the way kodubale is supposed to be made. Maybe it should be collected from the floor and then had - that may add an extra zing to the taste :):):)

    1. //experienced masters//looks like dictionary meaning are redefined:) Thank you, Ramesh.

      Nice idea of collecting from the floor......good exercise( situps) too.....

  5. Quite a learning experience there:)) Love the honesty with which you have described the entire endeavor. Keep up the blogging - there's a lot of openness here that one wants to see more frequently in the blogosphere.

    1. True Swapna.. A learning experience. Next time, i will remember to sieve the flour before making fried items.

      Hey thanks swapna, touched by the rest of the comment.

  6. Your blog is a store house of interesting things from South which are unknown to a North Indian like me. Read about Kodubale for the first time. Since you mentioned that it is available from MTR now, will check it out.
    OMG...Kodubale turned into Kodubale Dosas!! :D Am sure you now know the trick to make perfect Kodubales so let this be the first new recipe on your cookery blog. Waiting :)

  7. Thank you, shilpa. check out and let me know if you like it. MTR products are also under the brand 'Maiya' their surname.

    Sure, sure....will post kodubale once i get over the cleaning hangover:)