Dry Shrimp with Grated Coconut (‘Chammanthi’)

A simple and humble dish that has been reigning over the taste buds of all the Keralities for centuries…

Chammanthi (in malayalam) is a side dish made in less than 5 minutes by grinding grated coconut along with other ingredients. This is one of the popular side dishes in Kerala cuisine. I don’t know to which category I should include this, as this will be seen for breakfast, lunch and dinner. For breakfast, this is often served with Dosa, Appam or Idli. For lunch, this will be seen along with Rice, and again you can see its presence for dinner. This is also served along with rice porridge.

This dish is a real time saver and a money saver too. Just plain rice when eaten with this dish is enough to conquer your hunger. And the amazing thing about this dish is that if this is served along with any other hyped dishes, you’ll be stunned to see the speed with which this humble dish gets emptied from the platter. I am not at all exaggerating. Once you try this, you’ll be its slave for the rest of your life. Are you drooling yet? 🙂

The required ingredient of this dish is grated coconut. In order to enhance the taste of the chammanthi, often one more ingredient is added to the coconut. If you add cilantro to the grated coconut, you’ll get cilantro chammanthi; if you add raw mango, it becomes mango chammanthi; if mint is added, it becomes mint chammanthi. The taste of these chammanthis are totally different.

My favorite way of indulging in chammanthi is by adding dry fish to the grated coconut. Dry shrimp or dry tuna is the best fish choice. Dry shrimp chammanthi was introduced to me by my grandma; almost all meals are accompanied by this dish at my grand parents. My grandma used to make this using the traditional grinder “Ammi-Kallu”.

“Ammi-Kallu”, has 2 parts, one flat surface made of rock on which the ingredients to be ground are placed and a cylindrical stone which is used to grind the mixture. Believe me, the chammanthi made by grinding the coconut mixture using this traditional grinder is tastier and incomparable to the chammanthi made in a branded blender.

Unfortunately, I don’t have a traditional grinder in my kitchen, so I had no other choice but grind it in a blender.

Dry Shrimp with Grated Coconut:

Ingredients

  • Dry shrimp- 3 tbsp

  • Grated coconut- 1/2 cup
  • Small onions or pearl onions- 3
  • Chili powder-1/2 tsp
  • Ginger, minced- 1/2 tsp
  • Tamarind, whole or paste- if whole-a small slice, or 1/2 tsp paste
  • Salt- to taste
  • Water- 1 to 2 tbsp or enough to make a coarse ground mixture.

Instruction:

  • In a blender, add the above mentioned ingredients and grind it to a coarse mixture.

  • Don’t add too much water while grinding, as it would make the mixture watery.
  • If you want the chammanthi to be a finely ground mixture, grind it according to your needs.

Tips:

You could substitute dry shrimp with dry tuna, raw mango, cilantro.

 

Dry Shrimp with Grated Coconut (‘Chammanthi’)
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 People
 
Ingredients
  • Dry shrimp- 3 tbsp
  • Grated coconut- ½ cup
  • Small onions or pearl onions- 3
  • Chili powder-1/2 tsp
  • Ginger, minced- ½ tsp
  • Tamarind, whole or paste- if whole, a small slice, or ½ tsp paste
  • Salt- to taste
  • Water- 1 to 2 tbsp or enough to make a coarse ground mixture.
Instructions
  1. In a blender, add the above mentioned ingredients and grind it to a coarse mixture.
  2. Don't add too much water while grinding, as it would make the mixture watery.
  3. If you want the chammanthi to be a finely ground mixture, grind it according to your needs.
Notes
You could substitute dry shrimp with dry tuna, raw mango, cilantro.

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