Pazham Pizhinjathu aka mashed bananas with puffed rice is a traditional mid morning snack or tea time snack. This falls in the category of smoothies and is also a perfect vegan breakfast too. I have a lot of memories associated with it. My childhood memories are filled with delicacies like these which evoke sweet nostalgia for me. I spent my childhood with my grandparents and cousins. It was a big extended family. Cow, farming fields, vegetable and fruits grown in the compound, every thing was organic and home grown.
It was always a festive mood for us as the house was filled with people always. Every meal was a celebration in itself. Other than the main meals, mid day snacking and evening tea snack had a huge role to play. We kids always used to wait for these snacks. It was always traditional snacks that we opted for. Since farming was done at home, a large stock of rice flakes aka aval or puffed rice would be there always in the pantry. Hence this was always a mid morning snack for us.
As always with changing times and culinary art becoming more of an art and gourmet side, I added some twists to it since this becomes my breakfast sometimes. I add flax seed powder, chia seeds and nuts of my choice to make it more healthy and wholesome. Those who are strict on carbs can avoid the puffed rice and rice flakes and go with the banana concoction. You can also use red rice flakes for making it a healthy carb.
In the traditional version, a banana named palayamthodan/cherupazham is used for making this. This banana is slightly tangy, sweet and is an amazing laxative along with the large content of calcium C and pottassium. Since this variety is not available here, I have used the Chiquita, which is widely used one all over the world. We can also use Robusta which is available in India, and is somewhat similar to the chiquita variety. Bananas are laoded with pottassium and other minerals and hence its recommended for people who does work outs.
Coconut milk is what gives this smoothie the total outstanding flavor. Thick fresh coconut milk imparts a flavor which is so satisfying and enjoyable. I add jaggery/ raw sugar to make it healthy rather than the refined sugar. Jaggery imparts a special flavor to this whole dish. I’m sure most of us will have over ripe bananas in our pantry always. And it is exactly the reason why I make this often. Wisely using resources especially edibles is one of my motto. So think of this dish always when you have over ripe bananas and in turn me 🙂
In a mixing bowl, add the bananas. Mash it up. Add the sliced shallots and mash up together again. Add salt to taste, along with sugar, followed by half of coconut milk.
Combine homogeneously and rest of the coconut milk. Mix well. Serve as it is or with nuts of your choice.