The average Malayali knows that there’s nothing quite as versatile as the ‘puttu’. The awesomeness that is the puttu or ‘steamed rice cake’ can be experienced whether you are a vegan, vegetarian, or non-vegetarian.
But unlike the idli and the dosa that have made successful immigrations to the West, the puttu is still somewhat restricted to Kerala. That might change though, considering the dish was recently on the Ellen Degeneres show!
Six-year-old Kicha of Kochi has his own YouTube cooking channel and a $2000 deal with Facebook for one of his shows in which he makes “Mickey Mouse mango ice-cream”. The boy became an internet sensation a few months ago after his “chef” videos went viral.
Kicha was invited by popular American talk show host, Ellen Degeneres, to exhibit his cooking skills on her show.
In the process, Ellen learnt how to say “puttukutti” – the cylindrical steaming device used to make puttu - and the long list of ingredients that go into making Kerala’s traditional breakfast.
Watch the video here:
Kicha starts off by excitedly jumping up and down when Ellen asks him if this is the first time he's visiting the US. "I'm having so much fun!" he exclaims.
It’s clear that Kicha likes his time in the kitchen. He patiently and diligently lists out all the ingredients that he would be using to make the “puttu”, as an amused Ellen looks on. But oh no, there’s so much that goes into the puttu that Ellen has to hurry him up! In the end, Ellen does take a bite off the puttu and declares it to be delicious.
Kicha started cooking simple recipes when he was all of four years old. Now, his year old YouTube channel, KichaTube, has over 4000 subscribers.
"Kicha has always loved watching me bake, and would ask me whether he could help. So I would give him small recipes which he could follow," his mother Ruby Rajagopal told Times of India.
In another video addressed to Ellen, Kicha makes banana and coconut puttu for her because she is vegan: