Baked Aval (Flattened Rice, Poha)

Flattened rice preparations are very popular across the country, especially for breakfast. There are some fascinating recipes using this ingredient. The state of Maharashtra has developed several of these dishes into a fine art. Flattened rice is a very healthy and light ingredient. I tend to use the red rice which makes it even healthier. The dish presented here is very easy to prepare and tastes very close to the South Indian curd aval.

1 1/2 cups flattened rice (I used the red variety)
1 tbsp coarse millet (you can use any millet, I used sorghum (jowar, cholam)
1/2 cup vegan yogurt
2 tbsp coriander leaves, chopped fine
2 tsp green chillies, chopped fine
1 tbsp date paste
2 tsp lemon juice
Salt to taste
1 tsp mustard seeds (sarson, kadugu)
A pinch of asafoetida (hing, perunkayam)
To Garnish
1 tbsp coriander leaves, chopped

Soak the millet in 1 tbsp of water and set aside for 10 minutes
Wash the flattened rice in running water and drain
Set aside
Transfer the flattened rice to a deep bowl, add the soaked millet, yogurt, coriander, green chillies, date paste, lemon juice and salt
Mix well
Spread this mixture in a baking tray lined with parchment paper
Set aside
Heat a wok and add mustard seeds
When they begin to splutter, add the asafoetida
Mix well and pour this tempering evenly over the flattened rice
Bake in a pre-heated oven at 200 degrees C for 10-15 minutes
Serve immediately after garnishing with coriander leaves

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