Khau Galli: Neyyappam at Ram Ashray, Matunga
The last thing you expect when you walk into an obscure restaurant in Mumbai is to find Neyyappam. A planned meal at Ram Ashray, Matunga, turns out to be a surprise because in the list of specialties for the day is Neyyappam (Rs 28). Getting good Neyyappam in Kerala itself can be tricky. So, to be able to savour it in Mumbai is mostly out of the question. Tucking into this globular pancake, that is hot and soft, makes for a perfect indulgence.
Neyyappam is also called Unniappam (Unni means baby in Malayalam), perhaps due to its size. One of the temple offerings to Lord Krishna in Kerala, Neyyappam is made of rice flour, jaggery, coconut chips and ground cardamom, all mixed together into a batter. The recipe is simple, yet the way the flour and the jaggery is mixed is the trick.
Neyyappams are shallow-fried in cast iron globular slotted pans that are specially made for it and when the appam is ready, it bobs out of the oil. The food portions at Ram Ashray are tiny, the food is yum and the Neyyappams can rival the ones we have eaten at home.
Bhandarkar Road, opposite Matunga Kabutar Khana, Matunga (E). & 24102623
+ Avoid rush hours