My Mom is one of those very simple women who didn’t change much with time. I have never seen her wearing anything other than saree; her hair is always casually tied into a bun with a red bindi on her forehead and no make up whatsoever. Her fashion sense could be old fashioned but I adore how quickly she got herself accustomed to smart phones. For someone who never cared to have a mobile phone, she very proficiently chats with me on WhatsApp and even learnt video calling on Skype. Well, she does explain that its only because she wants to watch Avyan grow, even if virtually. I am just glad that we can get on Skype and cook together. She taught me to prepare these Chitoi Pitha exactly that way.
Pitha or Pithe
Pitha or Pitheare sweet treats, which are typically prepared with rice flour mixed with wheat or all-purpose flour. Mostly popular in eastern region of India, Pitha/Pithe could be dumplings, tiny cakes or pancakes (like the one I am sharing today).
Chitoi Pitha or Steamed Pancakes are a little tricky to prepare. It’s a traditional food from Bangladesh. The batter needs to be of perfect consistency, not runny but thin enough so you can ladle it on the hot pan. Then, it’s steamed after covering with a lid and sprinkling just enough water all around. Too much water and it gets mushy, too less water and it gets dry. Unlike typical pancakes, these are dense and chewy because they’re prepared with a mix of rice flour and wheat flour.
Every time we meet, Mom prepares Chitoi Pitha for me, several times. We love to have it for breakfast with some freshly grated coconut and shaved jaggery, preferably date palm jaggery. But this time, I made it as a dessert by pouring a good amount of luscious jaggery cream sauce. I just couldn’t resist myself after receiving this cute little milk pan from Fujihoro. It’s perfect to prepare sauce, has got a sturdy handle and is easy to drizzle without spilling everywhere. I am sure Fujihoro’s porcelain enameled steel products don’t need any introduction. I simply love the modern take and the vibrant colors they chose for their cookware. It makes quite a centerpiece in the dinning table too.
for Chitoi Pitha/Steamed Pancakes
- 1 cup rice flour
- ¼ cup whole wheat flour
- pinch of salt
- water to make the batter
for jaggery cream sauce
- ¼ cup grated jaggery
- 200 ml fresh cream
- grated jaggery
- freshly grated coconut
- Whisk rice flour, wheat flour and salt in a mixing bowl. Then, pour water little by little to get the right consistency. If the batter gets too runny, add a little but of rice flour or wheat flour. Allow the batter to rest for about 10 minutes and in the meantime, prepare the jaggery cream sauce.
- Scatter the grated jaggery in a saucepan and turn on the heat. Allow it to simmer until the jaggery starts meting. Now, very carefully, taking your face away from the pan pour cream and give it a stir. Continue simmering until the sauce thickens.
- To prepare Chitoi Pitha, heat a flat pan and make sure the heat is medium low. Ladle a little bit of the batter right in the center. Immediate cover the pan and sprinkle 1 tablespoon of water all around the lid. It will start steaming the pancakes and in about 2 to 3 minutes, it will be done. Take off the lid and remove the Chitoi Pitha to a serving plate. Continue making rest of the Chitoi Pitha.
- Once done, pour the jaggery cream sauce on top and allow the Chitoi Pitha to soak up some of the sauce before serving. You could also serve it dry with some grated coconut and grated jaggery.
Chitoi pitha (steamed pancakes) cooks best in iron pan instead of nonstick pans.