Sevai is a huge south Indian favorite. They are essentially thin rice noodles and are either eaten plain or mixed with spices to make it savory or like a sweet pudding. It is sort of difficult to make - it needs a bit of muscle work - but no more than, say, kneading dough or churning ice cream!
The rice noodles are thin and delicate and absolutely delicious.
1 cup Parboiled Rice (or puzhungal arisi), soaked in water for 2 hours
Salt, to taste
2 tbsp Oil
Special equipment needed: Sevai press. The traditional ones were large and stood on the floor (that's the one I have). Now you get smaller, sleeker table-top versions - even automatic electric ones, that require you to just push a button.
After soaking, grind the salt and rice together with the water until smooth.
Heat a saucepan with the oil and add the batter. Keep stirring for approximately 10 minutes or until thick.
Remove from the stove and while warm, roll into tennis-ball sized balls. Steam the balls for about 1/2 hour, until cooked and tender.
Place the balls, one at a time, in the compartment of the press.
Turn the handle a couple of times, and presto - out comes the beautiful sevai!
Serve hot with more kozhambu. I've also frozen sevai and it keeps well for up to 3 months. When you are ready to serve, just sprinkle on some water and heat, covered, in the microwave for about 30 seconds.
Other popular types of sevai: Mango Lemon Sevai, Coconut Sevai, Sweet Sevai and a healthy Ragi (finger millet or african millet - available in most Indian grocery stores) Sevai.