Tel Pitha in Lower Assam is often known as Ghila Pitha in Upper Assam. Tel Pitha is an essential part of the Assamese Bihu Platter. This recipe is my Mother’s recipe from whom I have inherited my Pitha making skills.
Preparation Time : 45 minutes
Makes : 25-30 pithas
Rice flour : 3 cups
Wheat flour / Atta : 1 cup
Baking powder / Soda : 1 teaspoon
Fennel seeds / Saunf : 1 tablespoon
Orange rind : 1 tablespoon, finely chopped
Salt : a pinch
Jaggery / Gur : 1 and 1/2 cup, chopped or grated
Water as required
Refined oil for deep frying
For Pithas, homemade rice flour gives the perfect texture. To make rice flour at home soak the rice in water for about 1 hour. Now wash the rice and drain excess water. Let it dry in a newspaper while turning with hand for about 2 hours so that the water dries out. Now put the rice in a mixture grinder and make a fine powder.
In a big bowl, take about 2 cups of water and add the jaggery. Mix well with hand so that the jaggery completely dissolves in the water. Now strain this mixture using a strainer and put it in a different bowl. Add in the rice flour and wheat flour little by little and mix well so that no lumps are formed. The batter should have the consistency of a cake batter, neither too thick nor too runny.
To this mixture, add in the orange rind, Fennel seeds, Salt and baking soda. Mix well. Let it sit for 30 minutes.
Heat oil in a pan or kadhai for deep frying. Add a spoonful of batter to the hot oil and deep fry on both sides till golden brown. Likewise fry all the pithas. Drain excess oil and let it cool completely. * If you want to relish warm pithas then keep the mixture in the refrigerator. This mixture can be used up to 3 days. Fry and immediately serve it to your guests as and when required.
Store in air tight containers and serve it to your guests with tea or coffee. You can store these pithas up to 10 days.