Appay is a very common konkani breakfast/snack. I am sure its made in other communities too. But in konkani Appay made with Urad-dal is called "Ududha Appay". Though the name has only Urad dal, its basically made with the idli/dosa batter. I make a little variation by adding chopped shallots (for the picture click here) and minced ginger to the batter.
(Idli/dosa batter)To make Appay, you need Appay Kailee. The same "Appay Kailee" is used to make "Unniyappam" which is a sweet Appay. Now here is where I found that Appay is not just something made in India, but its popular in US too, with the difference that, in US they call it "Pancake Puffs" which is made with a different batter though, but its made on the same mould which we konkani's call it "Appay Kailee" . We had already bought our "Appay Kailee" from my in-law's house. When I saw it in the 'Bed, Bath and Beyond' store, I was so happy and surprised to see it. Here you get the non-stick version of the mold. The traditional ones in India is made with cast iron.
So here is how you make the Ududha Appay:
Optional : chopped shallots and minced ginger and chopped curry leaves mixed with batter.
1. Keep the mould on high flame. Pour 1/4 teaspoon oil in each mould.
2. Pour the batter in each mould such that the batter fills up to just half the mould. This is because the batter rises for forming the Appay. So there should be room for the Appay to rise in the mould. Optionally, sprinkle some Italian seasoning over the batter in each mould, for a little variation.
3. Let it cook until the edges of the Appay becomes very light brown. Mine burnt few Appay's as you can see the below pictures:)) . Don't let it burn, invert them when the edges are lightly brown.
4. Try to run a spoon through the edges to see if the Appay smoothly slides , so that it can be cooked on both sides.Invert all the Appay, when they are cooked on one side as seen below. Lower fire to medium high.
When all the Appay are cooked, transfer them onto a plate. Serve it with coconut chutney, sambar for breakfast, or as snack.