5 Things To Know About That Awesome Indian Snack Murukku
1. The word “murukku” roughly means “twist” in Tamil, hence its trademark spiral shape.
2. But murukku doesn’t only come in concentric spirals. It can be in the form of puffed pillows, sticks or ribbons – the last variety is sometimes known as ribbon pakoda.
3. What is this Tamil Nadu snack made of? Mainly rice flour or ural dhal (a black lentil) flour, salt, spices… and asafoetida. Asa-what, you ask? This is the gum of a species of fennel and has a garlic-onion taste that makes it a great substitute for those who can’t consume real garlic or onions for religious or digestive reasons.
4. Depending on the region, murukku goes by many other names, from achappam (Kerala-style rose-shaped cookies) to thenkuzhal (made with cumin or sesame seeds).
5. Manapparai, a small town in Tiruchirappalli, is so famous for (and proud of) its murukku-making history that the Tamil Nadu government even applied for the town to have a geographical indication tag. Such a tag associates a region or city with a food product that it is known for.