Motta Porrichu - Spicy Coconut Ginger Omelette

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Motta Porrichu - Spicy Coconut Ginger Omelette

Motta porrichu translates to "fried egg" in Malayalam, the language spoken in the Indian state of Kerala.

He would take this spicy omelet with red onion, fresh curry leaves and coconut cream to school for lunch growing up.

It is the ultimate comfort food for South Indian families and occupies such an important place in the Kerala cuisine – it is prepared daily and on special occasions.

Motta porrichu is traditionally served for lunch or dinner as a main dish or side dish accompanied by matta rice and spicy Indian pickles on the side.

Matta rice, also known as Kerala red rice, is grown on the black soil of Kerala and Karnatica. The soil produces rice with a unique earthy flavor.

Coconut cream to enrich

The coconut cream adds richness to this tortilla. You can buy canned coconut cream or just use coconut cream that is frozen on top of a can of full-fat coconut milk.

For the coconut cream, do not shake the can so the cream and water separate. Open the can and remove the cream.

Once the eggs are beaten, the yolks and whites should be fully incorporated, add the coconut cream, making sure to break it up as you mix.

It is important that the eggs and coconut cream are evenly combined before cooking.

Grated ginger is a key Indian ingredient

Indians store grated ginger and minced garlic in the freezer for curries and quick-cooking dishes like this omelette.

Use a grater, such as a Microplane, to obtain fine pieces of fresh ginger.

If you don't have one, try this trick: Hold a fork on a work surface with the pointy end down, and rub a piece of peeled ginger across the tines of the fork.

Replacements We Recommend

  • Matta Rice: Use Uncle Ben long grain white rice, it has a similar texture to matta rice.
  • Green Bird's Eye Chile: Use red bird's eye chile or green serrano chile.
  • Cream of Coconut: Use 5 heaping tablespoons of shredded raw coconut.
  • Pink salt: Substitute 1/2 teaspoon of table salt.


  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup coconut cream (see recipe note)
  • 1 small red onion, diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh curry leaves
  • 1 green bird's eye chile, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pink salt or 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons virgin coconut oil
  • Mate rice, to serve (optional)


Beat the eggs and coconut cream:

In a medium bowl, beat the eggs until the yolks and whites are completely combined. Add the coconut cream and beat until most of the chunks are gone.

Add the remaining ingredients:

Add onion, ginger, curry leaves, chili, salt, and black pepper. Mix well until just combined.

Cook the omelet:

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat and add the coconut oil. Tilt the pan to evenly coat it with the oil.

Add the batter and use a spatula to spread evenly. Cook 2 minutes, uncovered. Then cover the pan with a lid and cook for another 3 minutes.

Use the spatula to lift up the side of the tortilla; the bottom should be golden.

Use the edge of the spatula to cut the tortilla into quarters and flip each one.

Cover the pan again and cook until the bottom is golden brown and you can no longer see liquid around the pan, about 2 minutes.

To serve:

Enjoy with arroz mate on the side if you like.

Leftovers can be refrigerated in a covered container for up to 1 day. Microwave 30 seconds or reheat in skillet over low heat, covered, until warm.

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