A for Appe

The Befores and Afters theme kicks off with a slightly unusual and not very frequently made recipe. This dish also has the ability to switch forms from a ‘Before’ to an ‘After’: depending on whether you choose to make the sweet or the savoury version. The sweet tooth won this round, but of course!

Appe (pronounced ‘Up-pay’) are small, sweet and very moreish. They resemble doughnut balls or the Danish pancakes aebleskivers (they are also known as paniyaram in southern India.) and taste like dense pancakes.

Traditionally made for a range of festivals in most Pathare Prabhu homes, ours traded these for milk based desserts that are sweeter and far richer than appe. But, given that they were my childhood favourites and not made as often as I would have liked, I thought I owed them a mention here to let them enjoy their spot in the A-Z hall of fame.

These appe get their distinctive look from being cooked in a cast iron pan that has 6-12 hemispherical compartments, depending on the size of the pan.

Appe : a sweet semolina version, in the appe pan

Appe : a sweet semolina version, in the appe pan



250 grams semolina

150 grams sugar

a pinch of finely ground cardamoms

a tiny pinch of ground nutmeg

a handful of raisins

2 tablespoons ghee

chopped pistachios for garnish (optional)

Equipment: An ‘appe’ patra (pan) or aebleskiver pan


  1. Heat a cup of water till it is warm.
  2. In a large bowl, add all the semolina and pour the warm water over it till the mixture is the consistency of thick porridge. Cover and leave this to soak for about 2-3 hours.
  3. To this mixture, now add the sugar, cardamom and nutmeg powders and raisins. Give it a nice stir.
  4. Heat the appe pan as you would a normal frying pan. Add a few drops of ghee into each compartment. Spoon in the batter and fry till cooked, flipping each of the appe over and until you have a golden crust.
  5. Serve hot.



  1. Sprinkle some chopped nuts over the batter just before the appe are completely done.

  2. You can also make a banana version. Mash in a banana into the semolina mix and cut down on the sugar. This is a taste and proceed process and depends on how gooey you want the insides to be. You will also need to use more ghee to cook this version.

3. I chose to make a healthy option with very little ghee. You can choose to deep fry these too.

  1. This version uses semolina which makes them denser and a perfect accompaniment for an after dinner coffee. I also chose to not to add a raising agent which explain the hemispherical shape you see here. If you don’t mind the taste, add a pinch of baking soda and they will puff up like little balloons.
Appe with caramelised raisins and pistachios

Appe with caramelised raisins and pistachios

This post is part of the A-to-Z Challenge and I’m blogging all through April on the theme ‘Befores and Afters’. #AtoZchallenge

About The Weekend Baker

Weekend baker, cook book collector, gatherer of family recipes.. I have inherited my love for baking, cooking and experimenting in the kitc
This entry was posted in A-Z 2016, Desserts, Festive food and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to A for Appe

  1. Shalzzz says:

    Yes, these are pretty easy to make and I love paniyaarams 🙂 In Kerala, we make another version called Unniyappams. That’s my all-time fav! Good luck with the challenge!

    Visit to read Army Wife Tales at Tale of Two Tomatoes
    Also drop in to check 26 Chicken Recipes at Something’s Cooking

    • The Weekend Baker says:

      Thanks, Shalini. Look forward to catching up with your blogs. Can’t believe you’re doing two this April. Good luck and enjoy!

  2. Tina says:

    Looks wonderful! Dropping from A to Z
    Tina from Twinkling Tina Cooks

    • The Weekend Baker says:

      Thanks for visiting, Tina. Look forward to catching up on your posts. You seem to be a fellow foodie. 🙂

  3. Sunila Vig says:

    These look yum Monica 🙂 I am sure I have eaten these made by my mangalorean co-sis…and then there are savoury versions too.

    • The Weekend Baker says:

      Thanks, Sunila. I am discovering that everyone is familiar with this dish by another regional name or in a regional avatar. 🙂 I like the savoury ones but these sweet semolina ones are my favourite.
      Look forward to catching up on your posts.

  4. Rajlakshmi says:

    Oh these are like those egg pancakes, pretty famous in Hong Kong. Didn’t know there’s a version in India too. Looks delicious.

    Visiting from A to Z Challenge
    Pam’s Unconventional Alliance Team
    A Whimsical Medley
    Twinkle Eyed Traveller

    • The Weekend Baker says:

      Thanks for visiting, Rajlakshmi. I didn’t know that there is a version of these in HK too. Must look them up. 🙂

  5. Nibha says:

    Oh I just love this dish! My mom usually cooks this for breakfast! Quick and easy! 🙂

    Nibha @ Expressions
    Arriving Late

  6. djinnia says:

    these sound so good!

    the pan looks similiar to my great-grandmother’s pan. i can’t remember the name of it though. hmm, it was cast iron, and the thingys had a Danish name. sigh.

    a delicious beginning to a to z. looking forward to more.

    • The Weekend Baker says:

      Thanks for stopping by, Djinnia. Do you mean the aebleskiver pan? This is very similar. 🙂 Fascinating, isn’t it.

  7. We have a similar version of this Kerala but for the life of me, I cant recall if it has a colloquial name…

    • The Weekend Baker says:

      Thanks for visiting, Roshan. I find it fascinating to find common dishes across regions and even countries. I was very intrigued to find that the appe /paniyaram skillet has a cousin in the Danish aebleskiver pan. It’s such a small world. 🙂

  8. Parul Thakur says:

    I don’t think I have ever had Appe. It looks yum and with semolina – healthy too. 🙂

  9. This is something new for me. Looks really good. Bookmarking! 🙂

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