Pesaha / Indri / Inri Appam and Paal

Never miss a single recipe, tip or special offer in your inbox every week for free...

×
Pesaha / Indri / Inri Appam and Paal

Easter is almost here and those who are on lent will be desperately counting the days. Usually Easter is celebrated in the months of March and April, which is the school summer vacation time in India. I’ve very fond memories of Easter during my early school years and the most important one is the Pesaha appam murikkal (breaking of unleavened bread) on Maundy Thursday. During my early school years we celebrated the Pesaha appam murikkal at my amma’s place, in Cochin itself, and for Easter, we used to go to my appa’s place at Changanacherry. Now those of you who don’t have any clue about Maundy Thursday and Pesaha appam murikkal chadangu, please read on.

Maundy Thursday is the Christian feast or holy day falling on the Thursday before Easter that commemorates the Last Supper of Jesus Christ with the Apostles. It  has a great significance in Christian faith because of three major events happened on that day. Those events are:

Maundy Thursday commemorates the institution of the Eucharist. Jesus had his last supper with disciples on this day. According to the old testament, this supper was the Passover Meal – a meal at which Jews remembered the covenant (agreement) God had made with them when they were released from captivity in Egypt.  At the supper, Jesus passed round the bread to his disciples and said “this is my body, take it and eat it” and gave the cup of wine and said “this is my blood, take it and drink it”. This was done to mark God’s NEW covenant, and that, whenever we ate or drank in this way we were to remember Jesus and what he did for us. This is the basis of the Holy Communion service in a Christian Church (sometimes called the Eucharist, Lord’s supper or Mass)

During the Last Supper, Jesus washed his disciples’ feet. He performed this humble task to remind them that they were to serve each other with love just as he had loved them. Even today this ritual is followed on Maundy Thursdays, where Priests wash the feet of 12 parish members, representing the twelve apostles.

Also, the night of Maundy Thursday is the night on which Jesus was betrayed by Judas in the Garden of Gethsemane. During the rest of the night and through the night up to Good Friday, he stood trial under the High Priest, Herod, and Pontious Pilate, before being crucified on the Friday morning.

Back home in Kerala, on Maundy Thursday morning, we go for mass, during which the priest wash the feet of parish members and also start the preparations for the Good Friday & Easter. In the evenings, we have appam murikkal, which is celebrated to commemorate the last supper of Jesus. We make special unleavened bread (which is known as Indri or Pesaha appam) and Paal (jaggery drink/dip), in which the appam is dipped for the occasion. The entire family will come together for the appam murikkal. The eldest member will lead a short prayer and then distribute the appam and paal to all members in the family.

The making of pesaha/indri appam (unleavened bread) is a special ceremony and is prepared with much respect and special care. We usually place the palm leave (which we get from church on Palm Sunday) in the form of a cross and make the appam and paal. This appam is made only on Maundy Thursday. Usually the appam is cut on Maundy Thursday evenings and the leftover will be the breakfast on Good Friday mornings. Since we are obliged to fast on Good Friday, that will be the only solid food that we have till evening. So usually the demand for Appam & Paal is more on Good Friday :)

Though I’ve made appam on all the four Pesaha (passover) we celebrated after wedding, I never took a picture . The one above is my mother in laws’. This recipe is my maternal grandmother’s recipe, which I got from my aunt, Tesschechy. I guess, there are different ways of preparing it and this is how we prepare it at home.

Here is the recipe:

You can see the updated version of this recipe (step by step pictures included) here.

Pesaha / Indri / Inri Appam and Paal
Author: 
 
Ingredients
For Appam
  • Rice powder – 1 cup
  • Urad dal (uzhunnu) – ¼ cup
  • Coconut – 1 cup, heaped
  • Garlic – 1 if it is big and 2 if its small
  • Small onion – 3-5
  • Jeera – a pinch
  • Water – 1 – 1½ cups
For Paal
  • Jaggery – 400gm
  • Medium thick coconut milk – 3 cup
  • Thick coconut milk – 1 cup
Instructions
  1. To Make Appam:
  2. Soak urad dal for 2 hours and grind it into a smooth paste by adding little water. Grind coconut with garlic, small onion and jeera with little water, until everything is combined well. Add salt & keep the water to boil, when bubbles start appearing add rice powder, little by little (vattikuzhakkuka) , making sure its not watery. The dough should be soft. Add urad dal paste and coconut paste. Combine everything well. The consistency of batter should be same as that of Idli batter. Transfer the batter to a well greased steaming tin. Place the cross made with palm leaves on the middle of the batter. Cover the tin with aluminium foil. Steam in appachembu/steamer for 18 – 23 minutes. Let it cool for sometime and then transfer to a serving dish. Use the same flame till the end, ie if you are using medium flame, cook on medium flame through out.
  3. To Make Paal:
  4. Melt jaggery with a little water. When it is completely melted, strain it. Add 3 cups medium thick coconut milk and stir continuously and when more than half of it is evaporated, add thick coconut milk and stir well. Do not boil once the thick coconut milk is added. For thickening the paal, take 1 or 2 tbsp rice powder and mix it with hot water and add to paal and cook for a few minutes.
Notes
I generally use the smallest burner in the stove to steam the appam. If you find it difficult to transfer the appam from steaming dish, place the steaming dish in cold water for sometime and then transfer the appam to a serving plate. I use Nirapara appam & Idiyappam podi to make Indri appam.

 

 

Reference sites :

http://www.woodlands-junior.kent.sch.uk/customs/easter/maundythursday.htm

http://wiki.answers.com/Q/Why_is_maundy_thursday_so_important_to_christian_religion

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maundy_Thursday

Get more articles, tips & insight in your inbox every week for free... (plus access to premium content)

×
  • http://vishnucooks.blogspot.com Priya Sriram

    This is a completely new dish to me and looks delicious Maria… I wish I could taste it once! :)

  • http://kaipunyam.com tina

    daaaaa……
    iyyyyyyoooooo last year my grandmother passed away……so eee pravashyam palu kachan okkillaaaaa….
    hmmmmm enikkum vene……..

  • http://riascollection.blogspot.com ria

    Maria,

    We do have things in common.. this was going to be one of my post for this week :) Your indri appam looks yum ( I must admit I rarely eat it though :D )

    Very well explained post :)

    Happy Easter!!!

    Hugs!

  • http://thepassionatecookinme.blogspot.com/ Ann

    Informative post maria..Havent tried pesaha appam till now..would love to..

  • http://ammuscanvas.blogspot.com/ ammu

    Dont forget to take pic this time!! Happy Easter..Thanks for posting this recipe..I was abt to call home n ask :)

  • annamma thottam

    wonderful . Thanks a mil for posting the Indri appam recipie.
    we will be making it as you dircted it .
    love you for this
    Happy easter from Texas

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Hi Annamma

      Really happy to know that you find it useful and thanks a lot for writing to me.

      Wish you and your family a happy easter!!

      Cheers
      Maria

  • Minu George

    Maria, thanks a lot :) will do this thursday..

    Happy Easter

    God Bless!!

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Hi Minu

      Happy easter to you and your family too :)

      Take care
      Maria

  • Sindu Justine

    hi …

    i was jst surfing the net to find how to make the indri appam and pesaha paal..and i am really lucky to have found ur site..thks a ton and now i am sure i can make the appam and paal this yr..every yr for easter we r at our hubbys place and amma will make it but this time cldnt make it to india so i will be preparing it..i will surely let u know how it turns out..thks again dear..

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Hi Sindu

      Very happy to know that you find this useful. Hope the appam and paal comes out well. Please do let me knw about it.

      Wish you and your family a happy easter!!

      Take care
      Maria

      • Sindu Justine

        hi maria

        thks a ton cos the pesaha appam and paalu and came out really great.i was really doubtful as to how my first attempt wld be but everyone liked it..thks to you and ofcourse to my mother – in law also….thks a lot..

        • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

          Hi Sindu

          Very happy to know that your appam came out well. Thanks for letting me know about it dear. Hope you had a wonderful Easter with your family.

          Take care
          Maria

  • sangeeta

    Dear maria
    hi. thanx a millon for ur recipe .i am going to make right now.as i have to take it to church in the evening.i too enjoy cooking but since i am working i have to have less time consumming recipies.
    with love and prayers
    sangeeta
    Happy Easter

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Hi Sangeeta

      Hope your appam and paal came out well. Please go through my old recipes, I’ve some simple, less time consuming recipes :). Hope you find that interesting.

      Happy easter to you and your family too.

      Cheers
      Maria

  • mathew

    thank u for sharing the know how of indri appam

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Hi Mathew

      Thanks for dropping in.

      Happy to know that you find it informative.

      Wish you and your family a happy easter!!

      Take care
      Maria

  • http://ammuscanvas.blogspot.com/ ammu

    btw..the jeera u hav mentioned here is cumin or fennel?

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Hi Ammu,

      Cumin is used for making pesaha appam.

  • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

    Hi Priya

    This is a special dish made by kerala christians. Hope you’ve some kerala christian neighbours :) or you’re welcome to make a quick trip to Bahrain :)

    Tina – so sorry to hear about your grandmother. saramilla, you can have it next year :)

    Thanks Ria and waiting to hope to see your post by today evening :). Btw, I also didnt like it when I was small, but now I love it :)

    Thanks Ann. Hope you will be able to make it this year :)

    Ammu – Happy easter to you and Prethesh also. I will try to take pics this time :)

  • Crispus

    thanks for posting this recipe..handy for today maundy thursday.

  • Priya

    Thank you Maria

    You are really helping many people around the globe. I forgot to ask my mom the recipe yesterday. Today I thought I am not going to make it but your site made the whole difference.

    Priya from California.

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Hi Priya

      Thanks for dropping in the blog and writing to me. Hope your appam came out well. Also hope that you had a wonderful Easter with your family.

      Cheers
      Maria

  • Divya

    Hey maria,
    Ur Indriyappam & paal came out good.I was trying this for the first time.Thanks dear.

  • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

    Crispus – thank you, hope your appam came out well :)

    Divya – thanks a lot dear for trying this out. Am really happy to know that it came out well. Anyways I will pass on the credits to tesschechy :)

  • achu

    hi maria

    This was my first easter after I got married. Came across your blog while searching for the pesaha appam recipe. Tried it with a little more cocunut. It came out really well (unlike many of my past attempts at cooking). Thanks a lot :)

    Tried the paal with a few additions
    - crushed jeera based on my mom’ s recipe
    - pazham (cut into round slices) as per my hubby’s suggestion

    Keep up the good work
    achu

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Hi Achu

      Thanks a lot for trying out the recipe and very happy to know that you liked it. Thank you for letting me know about it. Hope you had a wonderful Easter.

      Adding jeera to paal is new to me, I will give it a try next year. At my place also they add pazham to pal, I dont like fruits, thats why I dont use it.

      Please do try other recipes also when you’ve time.

      Cheers
      Maria

  • http://poomanam.blogspot.com/ Anjali

    My mom puts dried ginger and jeera in the pesaha paalu for flavoring. Gives it that unique taste! :)

  • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

    Hi Anjali

    I will try dry ginger & jeera combo next year, thanks for sharing it here :)

  • Ksj

    R u sure this is called indri appam?I think what u have described is kurisappam. At least that is what v used to call.

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Hi Ksj,

      Yes, this is kown as Indri appam at our place. May be its known in different names in different parts of Kerala.

      Regards
      Maria

  • Kashyap
    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Hi Kashyap,

      Thanks for letting us know about it. They have also copied a Fish recipe from here. Looks like they have copied recipes from other blogs too.

      We have emailed and asked them to remove it. Hopefully they will do that.

      Thanks once again…

      Cheers
      Maria

  • Ancy

    Maria followed your recipe today :)

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Thanks Ancy, I hope you liked it.

      Wish you all a Happy & Blessed Easter.

      Regards
      Maria

  • http://www.shabscuisine.blogspot.com shab

    i have heard about this appam from my xtian friend prathibha….i have never had it, so dont have a clue how its gonna taste…but ente kannu aa paalil aanu ketto…..vaayinnu vellam vannu poyi.sherikkum…I c

    By the way the people who coiped teh recipe plus pic, that is still there…..give them a complaint maria…..

  • http://www.shabscuisine.blogspot.com shab

    BTW, i am a great fan of ur cousin annitas blog as well…but she has stopped blogging now…i was thinking of asking u,..is she working?…i just wish she continued…she was doing an awesome job…

  • Sherin

    Daa..
    Can we bake this appam in oven without steaming it? I don’t have a steamer :(

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Hi Sherin,

      I havent tried that way yet, but I guess you can do that. May be you need to use a water bath for that.

      Cheers
      Maria

  • jjj kkutti

    nannayitundu

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Thanks :)

  • Sherin

    Mariakuttyehh,….. :)
    Happy Easter to you & your fly. One Q about the measurements.. Did you use U.S measuring cups for this for the appam? Thanks a lot dear…

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Hi Sherin,

      I know the reply comes late, but I use US measuring cups. I guess I’ve mentioned that to you in one of my previous emails :)

      Hope you had a wonderful Easter!

      Cheers
      Maria

  • Smitha

    I made this yest and I wanted to thank you for the recipe…. :)

    • http://www.mariasmenu.com Maria

      Thanks Smitha for using this recipe & also for the comment :). Hope it came out well.

      Cheers
      Maria

  • tessy

    hi maria,
    tried ur pesaha appam receipe n it cme out well..thanx a lt…..

    tessa

    • http://mariasmenu.com Maria Jose

      Hi Tessy,

      Thank you so much :) Good to know that it came out well. Thanks for the comment too..

      Cheers

      Maria

  • Beenashafeeq

    thanks for the recipe. just one doubt wht is this paal is it something to pour on top of the appam. sry i hv never tasted this efore gng to try for first time

    beenu

    • http://mariasmenu.com Maria Jose

      Hi Beenu,

      This is something we make on Maundy Thursday, as part of our religious tradition. We dip the appam in paal and have it.

      Cheers
      Maria

  • hemanth kumar

    great!!

    • http://mariasmenu.com Maria Jose

      Thanks!

  • ST

    Hi, Can you tell me the number of persons that can be served with the above mentioned quantity?

    • http://mariasmenu.com Maria Jose

      So sorry for the delayed rep :( You can serve around 6-7 people with this qty.

      Cheers
      Maria

  • Pingback: Varutharacha Meen Curry (Fish in Roasted Coconut Gravy) | Marias Menu

  • Tina Sanil

    Maria..Easter preprations evide vare aayi?im going to make pesaha appam n paal for the ist time.for paal can we use maggie coconut powder?will the taste be good.med thick coconut mil measurements?do reply wen time permits..have a blessed holy week dear !!

  • Tina Sanil

    Maria,going to make pesaha appam n paal for the 1st time.For paal can i use maggie coconut powder,will the taste be good?also can u let me know the measurements to be taken for thick coconut milk.Have a blessed holy week dear!!

    • http://mariasmenu.com Maria Jose

      Hi Tina, hope you got my mail. I always use maggi coconut milk for making paal. thick coconut milk – 3 tbsp maggi powder and 1 cup water, med thick – 2 tbsp powder and 1 cup water, thin milk – 1 tbsp powder and 1 cup water. You can always adjust the qty to suit your requirements. Hope your appam and paal came out well.

      Cheers
      Maria

  • Tina Sanil

    Maria,planning to make this for the 1st time.Can i use maggie coconut powder?will the taste be that good?also can u let me know the measurements required for med thick milk n 1st milk.Have a blessed holy week dear!!

  • Sinimats

    thanks,pls tell whether to add raw rice powder or fried?

    • http://mariasmenu.com Maria Jose

      Hi Sini, sorry for the delayed rep :(. I use appam podi, so I think its fried rice powder.

      Cheers
      Maria

  • Philip John

    One suggestion regarding the milk.  Rice flour to thicken the Paal is added to the thin coconut milk and cooked for few minutes, then 3-4 yellow bananas finely sliced are added, and lastly, adding the thick coconut milk and powdered cardamon to complete.

    • http://mariasmenu.com Maria Jose

      Thank you so much Philip for your suggestion :)

  • Roshinijojan

    Hi, Please tell me the number of persons that can be served with the above mentioned quantity?

  • Seena

    Dear Maria,
    Happy Easter to you in advance…

  • Seena

    Dear Maria,
    Happy Easter to you in advance…

    • http://mariasmenu.com Maria Jose

      Thanks dear :)

    • http://mariasmenu.com Maria Jose

      Thanks dear :)

  • Smitha

    Thank you for the recipe Maria…I m trying it tomorrow

  • Smitha

    Thank you for the recipe Maria…I m trying it tomorrow