Bread of Life

by Kaveri Ponnapa

Akki ottis can be adapted to breakfast, lunch or dinner. They are versatile, changing their character according to the accompaniments. At breakfast, they can be served with a selection of chutneys, pumpkin or broad bean curry, or pats of freshly churned butter, homemade jams, or wild Coorg honey. At lunch or dinner, they lend themselves equally well to curries and dry fires of vegetables and meats. They are the perfect foil for bimbale curry (tender bamboo shoot curry). If you have the luxury of a coal or wood fire, akki ottis toasted on embers take on a wonderful flavour.

Akki Ottis


  • 1cup short grain rice, like sona masuri, pressure-cooked in 2 ½ cups of water
  • rice powder
  • (1cup rice gives you about 5 ottis)
  • a pinch of salt


  • Wash the rice in several changes of water.
  • Soak the rice in water to cover for 15 mins.
  • Pressure cook in 2 ½ cups of water, with a pinch of salt for flavour.
  • Allow the rice to cool a little, until it can be handled.
  • Place the cooked rice in a large open platter, and mixing by hand, gradually work in sufficient quantity of rice powder to make a firm dough, which still retains some of the moisture of the coked rice. Too much rice powder will result in hard, dry ottis. Do not add any water as you knead.
  • Knead, and shape egg-sized rounds of dough into rotis on the palm of the hand, moistened with water or, alternatively, use a chapatti press, lined with sheets of plastic, which is much easier.
  • Toast both sides of the otti on a tava, as you would a chapatti, and then hold over a direct flame, allowing the otti to puff up. Serve hot, with elle pajji (sesame chutney), kumbala curry (curried pumpkin) or your choice of accompaniments.

Thank you for visiting this page. If you read something that you enjoy, or see an image that you like, please take a moment to write a response. Do look out for the recipes of all the food featured here in my upcoming cookbook.

Image Credits: Nithin Sagi
All Food Styling: Kaveri Ponnapa


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