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Do you want to try this out and tell us what happens Steve?

Maybe you can even take pictures to share with us.

I am sorry about mixing you with another user. :sad:

Injiras are similar in texture to a thick dosa and a thin uthappan. In fact they are closer to what an appam is.

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This summer after my kitchen renovation is done I will try it. I'm going to ask Gary at Hampton Chutney how to make the batter. Or even better, maybe I can get him to sell me a few quarts of batter to test out. Today dosas, tomorrow waffles, and then the world.

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This summer after my kitchen renovation is done I will try it. I'm going to ask Gary at Hampton Chutney how to make the batter. Or even better, maybe I can get him to sell me a few quarts of batter to test out. Today dosas, tomorrow waffles, and then the world.

Great for you Steven.

Maybe you can ask Gary if he can get you some batter from the city.

Much better, and while he is doing that, he can even ask the chef to give you a lesson, in fact Gary and the staff at the Hamptons could learn from the chef in the city. She is the best Dosa maker in NYC.

And do let us know what happens with the waffle maker - dosa batter experiment.

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This summer after my kitchen renovation is done I will try it. I'm going to ask Gary at Hampton Chutney how to make the batter. Or even better, maybe I can get him to sell me a few quarts of batter to test out. Today dosas, tomorrow waffles, and then the world.

Great for you Steven.

Maybe you can ask Gary if he can get you some batter from the city.

Much better, and while he is doing that, he can even ask the chef to give you a lesson, in fact Gary and the staff at the Hamptons could learn from the chef in the city. She is the best Dosa maker in NYC.

And do let us know what happens with the waffle maker - dosa batter experiment.

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I have used ghee when I have made Dosas and someone was coming over and I wanted to impress them with crisp, thin and nicely tanned dosas. What kind of cooking medium do the rest of you all use?

I have helped a cousin in NYC make Dosas for many years now. And she always uses butter. Her dosas have always been superb as well.

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I have been using 3 cups of rice and 1 of Urad Dal.

Suvir, I think the proportions are pretty flexible. However, it is the urad that makes the batter sticky and the dosas become a little tougher to pour. Hence the 4 to 1 ratio for a greater chance of success.

Also, I typically use canola oil for dosas - I cut an onion in half and stick a fork in it and then use the onion dipped in oil to coat the frying pan.

Simon, I also like dosas with a green bean poriyal - green beans with sesame seeds, ginger and shredded coconut in a tarka with urad and chana dal.

Steve, I've make savory waffles sometimes. Grate a little cheese, black pepper etc. Never tried it with dosa batter though - that would be an interesting experiement.

Also, you may enjoy this - the super large dosas served in restaurants are sometimes called 70mm dosas - like the movie film. Dosas at home are typically smaller (!) and less crisp. I like them less crisp, soft and pale, like Victorian women :wink:

If you added onions and things to the batter and make them pancake thick, that would be uttapam, which you seem to be familiar with already.

You should try making your own batter - if you use rice flour instead of rice, it's not that laborious.

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I have two favorite dosas. Suvir and I share an affection for the Hampton Chutney Company which is not run by Indians. Their dosa selection, which starts out with masala, is really quite modern. My favorite, Number 3, is roasted tomatoes, arugula and jack cheese. Another favorite is smoked turkey, spinach and roasted balsamic onions. They are quite good. I have one for lunch almost every Saturday afternoon at the Amaganset branch along with a cardemom iced coffee. And who said Indian fusion cuisine wasn't good? The other one is at House of Dosas, or Dosa Hut, can't remember the exact name but it's an all vegetarian dosa place on Route 107 in Hicksville, where there is about a 1/2 mile strip with lots of Indian shops. They make a dosa that has melted cheese, and strips of a hot green pepper. Then they seem to dust the finished product with an orange powder. Any guesses? Anyway it's really spicy. The actual dosa itself is softer and more breadlike then the dosas at Hampton Chutney, which are crispier and have more of a fermented taste to them.

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They make a dosa that has melted cheese, and strips of a hot green pepper. Then they seem to dust the finished product with an orange powder. Any guesses?

Could the orange powder be ground sumac? What flavor, if any, does it have?

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malaga podi is the orange powder stuff you mention.

It can be just a mix of chile powder, toasted lentils and some other spices.

It is usually the stuff that is added to Mysore Dosas. Makes them HOT.. I love them.

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Suvir, I think the proportions are pretty flexible. However, it is the urad that makes the batter sticky and the dosas become a little tougher to pour. Hence the 4 to 1 ratio for a greater chance of success.

Also, I typically use canola oil for dosas - I cut an onion in half and stick a fork in it and then use the onion dipped in oil to coat the frying pan.

Live and learn.

I never knew about the urad dal and the sticking business. Thanks Indiagirl!

I use onion halves to clean the griddle with. Works magic.

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Hey All!! could somebody tell me how to fermentate dosa batter during these cold months .... any help will be apprecitated..Thanks Leena :smile:

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Batters ferment well in warm weather. If you have gas oven with pilot light, try placing the batter in the oven overnight. This method worked for me when I lived in New York. Otherwise cover the pot of batter with an old blanket.


Ammini Ramachandran

www.Peppertrail.com

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do both: wrap in a kitchen towel or similar, and place in

an oven with pilot light on.

for electric oven, leaving the oven light on works.

works great not only for dosa/idli batter but also for

yogurt making.

milagai

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thanks guys but my electric oven does not have a pilot light :sad: but setting it at warm .... is that too hot ...and might bake the batter or something :smile: i might sound stupid but the warm settings in my oven seems to be a bit too warm .... thanks for all the help Leena

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Hey All!! could somebody tell me how to fermentate dosa batter during these cold months .... any help will be apprecitated..Thanks Leena

A small electric heating pad set on low, enclosed in a cardboard box would provide enough heat for proper fermentation...

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I have used a wee bit of Flieshmann's yeast (or any other instant yeast you find in supermarkets in those small packets) - to kick start the cultures - this has yielded in good fermentation....ofcourse, i also keep the dough in the oven with a pilot lamp...

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Hi all, I recently had the most delicious panir dosai while in Boston and I'm looking for a recipe for the filling, something light that will be good in a large crispy dosa. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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I have travelled to the south of India several times and thin crispy dosa are one of my fondest culinary memories.

I have now succeeded in making them at home using a Madhur Jaffrey recipe. The tricky part is the grinding, for which I now use a motorised grain mill:

INGREDIENTS

400g long-grain rice

200g urad dahl

salt

water

vegetable oil

METHOD

1. Separately pick over, wash, and soak the rice and lentils in twice their volume of water for two hours. Drain.

2. Separately grind the rice and lentils with a combined total of about 250ml water. Jaffrey says to use one third with the rice and two thirds with the lentils, grinding both (separately) in a blender: the rice to a fine, granular consistency, and the lentils to a smooth, meringue-like consistency. I had no problem grinding the lentils with my 800W Kenwood blender. This was however the blender I bought to replace the previous blender I blew up trying to grind the rice, which was not fine enough in any event. Now I use a motorised steel burr Messerschmidt grain mill for the rice. I have done it by hand with the mill but it was very hard work! By using the mill I don't need to use any extra water and instead put the whole cup with the lentils, making that job easier on my blender.

3. Combine the rice and lentils to as smooth a consistency as possible. I am still working on this part. I think I will have to resort to a food processor for this step next time as the combined paste is two thick for the blender, and you don't want the mix too lumpy.

4. Cover the mixture loosely with plastic wrap and ferment the mixture at 27 - 33 degrees C for about 24 hours. I use a cooler box (in Australia we call it an "Esky", named after the leading brand) in which I have put a 20W lamp and the probe of a thermometer. By partially covering the box with a lid I can maintain a reasonably constant temperature that can be adjusted by moving the lid around. The mixure should at least double in volume.

5. Fold in a cup of lukewarm water and 1 tsp of salt and leave for an hour or so.

6. Heat a large heavy frypan (I find a 16 inch Scanpan is ideal) on medium covered with a thin film of vegetable oil. Ladle about a half cup into the centre and carefuly and gently spread out by moving the back of the ladle in a circular motion until you have a nice thin pancake. To succeed you need batter that is just the right consistency and a deft touch: press too hard and you will put holes in your dosa, press to lightly and it will be too thick.

7. Cook for about 1 1/2 - 2 minutes. Carefully drizzle about a teaspoon of vegetable oil around the edge of the dosa. This will help the edge lift away from the pan. The underside is ready when it is a brown - red colour.

8. As far as I can tell dosas are traditionally cook on only one side. This will become the outside when it is folded over. However until you have achieved a nice thin dosa without lumps in the batter I suggest you turn it over and dook it for 1/2 minute on the other side.

9. Fold it in half and serve it without delay with your favourite condiments. Mine are a shallot and moong dalh curry and coconut chutney. Jaffrey has recipes for these. Potato curry with or without peas are also a classic accompaniment.

Why bother, I hear you ask? Like with tortillas made with masa harina, dosa made from packet mix does not compare. Packet dosas use a rising agent that lacks the delicate, sweet-sour flavour that comes from natural fermentation.

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Hey Shaun, thanks for the interesting post!

Thoughts: For the best dosa batter, you really need a wet grinder such as ultra pride +. This may seem expensive, but if you make dosas and idlis at least three times a week, and coconut chutney too, you will soon see the huge benefits. Plus you can grind batter for pesarattu, vada, adai, iddiappam...the list goes on. For dosa and idli batter, the rice and dal are ground separately.

Not sure how much it is in grams, but I always do 3 cups rice to 1 cup urad for dosas and idlis. Some people do 4:1. For some reason, whole skinless urad gram gives a better batter than urad dal. For good colour and better fermentation, soak 1 tsp of fenugreek seeds with the urad. The type of rice makes a difference - a big one. I don't use long grain rice, and certainly never basmati!

The hardest bit about the batter is getting the different textures correct - this is something that a good wet grinder will do for you with ease! As for fermentation, well a friend of mine swears that even if the batter does not ferment, dosas can still be made....unlike with idli batter :laugh:

Talking of idlis, whilst idlis can definitely be made at home, dosas are one of those things that many people swear can only be made in restaurants. Certainly it is much much harder to get a big, perfectly crispy dosas at home. The reason for this is that the tawas at restaurants are in use constantly, so they are well seasoned at always at the right temperature. Of course, the chefs are also pros at what they do, and they can make huge dosas because they have huge pans!

Probably the cooking part of making dosas are:

*Chuck that non-stick tawa you have been using and get a decent cast iron one! Keep it only for dosas - even making the odd chapatti on it seems to change the way it cooks dosas.

*Heat the pan. Put a little oil on the pan and then rub it with the cut side of an onion. Don't ask me why, but this really old time tip seems to work wonders. Some people also use the cut side of a potato.

*Most people make home-style dosas thicker, because it's easier. For restaurant style dosas, spread the batter as thin as you can. You can also use a spatula to scrap off the top layer to get the dosa even thinner. By the way, the first dosa always seems to go wrong - just like with pancakes! I guess the pan temperature is not right at the start.

*I think the majority of dosas are cooked on both sides, but there are some that are not. One of these is a thicker home style dosa, that is sometimes covered to cook the top without turning it over. It's softer and spongier that wa.

The most common accompaniments to dosa are sambar and chutney. Sambar is made from toor dal, and shallot sambar is common, so is that what you mean when you talk about "shallot and moong dalh curry"? Moong dal is a different dal, but maybe you just made a typo? Personally I prefer mix veg sambar, especially if it has drumsticks and okra in it! There are of course a multitude of coconut chutneys. Another good thing about eating dosa in a restaurant is that you can have a variety of chutneys, whereas at home most people just make one or maybe two.

Masala dosa is made by stuffing the dosa with a little spicy potato and onion mixture. This is usually done on the tawa, with a layer of chutney and/or podi applied to the dosa first. Some masala dosas use other vegetables in the potato mix, such as beetroot and carrot.

The best best best dosa I have ever had was in Bangalore, in a place that is famous for its benne masala dosas and rawa idlis - CTR (Central tiffin rooms). Benne masala dosa are butter masala dosa. The dosa are so crisp, so red, so buttery...oh my god, I am really craving one now!

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Hi Jenni

It's great to hear from a real expert! I have some questions and comments. Questions:

1. I am trying to work out what you mean by urad gram as distinct from urad dal. Is it a different lentil? Or is it just the urad dal whole (but skinned) instead of split?

2. What rice do you use if not basmati?

3. Do you have a favourite potato curry recipe you can share for masala dosa? Preferably one with peas! And how does one make butter masala dosa? This sounds heavenly!

4. Can you share an uttapam recipe? Onion is my favourite.

5. Do you have a poori recipe? After reading your post I googled the Ultra Pride and saw a reference to making poori with it. Prior to this I have been using a shortened flour water dough without the need for grinding. Is this not authentic?

Comments:

1. You are quite correct that I meant toor rathen than moong dal. Again Mahdur Jaffrey's version of sambar is delicious but I would love to hear yours (including your recipe for home made sambar powder).

2. Regarding the grinder I originally bought it for grinding nixtamal (damp, treated dried field corn) to make masa for tortillas. When I googled Ultra Pride I read a post by one person who had tried using it to make masa but found it did not grind fine enough. My grinder is adjustable and gives me a good consistency with the rice for dosa. I use a blender for the dahl. The tricky part is combining the two pastes smoothly. It is too thick for the blender so I intend trying the food processor next time which might work given the mixture is already ground. I would be grateful for your suggestions.

3. Jaffrey's coconut chutney recipe is made by adding to the coconut tamarind paste and a ground mixture of urad dal, brown mustard seed and dried chilli fried in a little oil and then mixed with asafatoeda. Can you suggest an alternative?

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Hi Shaun,

First, I am sooo not an expert! Just a fan, with a tiny bit of ancestry that keeps me coming back for more :)

1. Yep, just the whole urad bean, minus the skin. Should be available wherever you buy your normal dals. It needs longer soaking than the dal, personally I usually just leave dosa or idli stuff soaking overnight or from morning till evening.

2. Ok, so dosa batter will work with basmati, but it's a bit of a waste and also I have heard from many people that it does not work as well. Remember that basmati is a northern rice, and is not first choice for most southern dishes. I use a combination of raw ponni rice and parboiled red rice for my idli/dosa batter. I hear you get crisper dosas by using less parboiled.

3. Vague recipe: Cook potatoes till tender, mash so there are no big lumpy bits (but not a smooth paste). Heat oil in a pan, add a little mustard, urad and channa dal. When the mustard pops and the dals redden, add curry leaves, a pinch of asafetida and some chopped onion, minced green chillies and minced ginger. Stir and fry till onion is translucent-ish. Then add turmeric (plus chilli powder if you want), salt and the potatoes. Cook until well combined. Add a splash of lemon juice and some chopped fresh coriander to perk up the flavour if desired. This is just a rough personal recipe, feel free to embellish! If you want peas in that, just add them!

4. For utthappam, often leftover idli batter is used, so it is a little sour. The batter should be thicker than for dosas, which is why leftover idli rather than leftover dosa batter is used. They are also spread thicker than dosas. There are two schools of thought: One says add chopped ingredients to the batter itself, the other says to sprinkle straight on top of the utthappam whilst it cooks on the pan. Try either! Adding to batter is easier though, don't add too much when sprinkling on top. My favourite mixture is tomato, onion, green chilli and chopped coriander. Cook on both sides.

5. I don't deep fry at home, but poori recipes are pretty easy to come by. Atta, water, salt, make dough, then fry! The reason it says you can make poori in the ultra pride is because you can use the dough hook attachment to knead dough.

As for your other comments, I say get an ultra pride ;). Makes great chutney too, which brings me on to your next question. After making sambar, I usually like a simple chutney, so I just grind fresh grated coconut with green chillies, ginger, a little salt and then at the last minute a little fresh coriander. Then I do a tadka of mustard, urad dal, dried red chillies and curry leaves. Easy :)

I make a damn fine sambar...actually I am trying to write up a post on that for my blog so I will get back to you!

As I said, I am not an expert. There are many who know more than me and they may well correct me or steer you more clearly!

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Thanks for your advice Jenni.

I have tweaked things a little and managed to get my dosa crepe thin and good colour.

For my batter I used a higher rice - lentil ratio than previously. I read that this increases crispiness, although ultimately it is a matter of taste:

500g idli rice

100g parboiled red rice

200g urad gram

50g channa dahl (I read this helps fermentation)

3/4 tsp fenugreek seeds

I soaked the lentils and rice separately for 6 hours.

I pureed the lentils in the food processor with 1 1/2 cups of water rather than blender until it was a fine but granular paste

I ground the rice and fenugreek in the grain mill (see previous post)

Finally I added the rice to the food processor and mixed uniformly

After 12 hours at 30C nothing much was happening so I added some lukewarm water (perhaps a cups) to make it the consistency of a thick pancake batter, a teaspoon of sugar, and a pinch of dried yeast. I don't know which if any or all of them did the trick, but after a further 12 hours the mix was doubled in volume. At this stage I folded through 1 1/2 tsp salt and enough lukewarm water (about 1 cup) to make it the consistency of thinnish cream and left it a further hour and a half. Obviously you should err on the side of being too thick, as you can always adjust it later. At cooking time I adjusted the consistency by taking a small bowlful out of my pot and adding water or batter to it as needed.

I was able to make uttapam with the same batter. This only difference was that I just let it spread naturally. When cooked on one side I sprinkled on my ingredients (raw onions) and these were cooked just enough after I had flipped the cake and cooked it to a good colour on the other side.

Dosa.jpg

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Hi Shaun,

Personally I would not use yeast or sugar in my dosa batter - natural fermentation is sufficient and these additions are not traditional. I don't know where you live, but I am in the UK at the moment and it is taking between 12 and 24 hours to get fully fermented batter at the moment. The weather is warming up, so that should improve. Try using a little more urad dal if fermentation is not occuring, and don't forget my trick of using whole (skinless) urad. Apparently the reason it is better is that when urad is split, there is some heating involved and this can kill of that natural yeasts present in the urad. Also, try mixing batter with clean hands when you are combining the batters. This is a tip that many South Indian mothers give!

I have never use channa dal in dosa batter, but would be interested to taste a dosa made this way. In terms of rice, I have been researching this and my understanding is that too much parboiled rice in dosa can make them less crispy. Also, apparently whilst short grain rice is important for idlis to get softness, it is not so important for dosa. In fact, in theory longer grain rice might make crisper dosas. Don't have a consensus on that one yet!

I am finding it hard to fully understand your grinding process, but I do know that the urad should be ground into a very smooth frothy batter, not granular.

As I mentioned before, utthappam is usually made from leftover idli batter, as it is thicker. It is usually spread out on the pan, but I am guessing yours was a little too thin so spread on its own. Incidentally, I made utthappam this weekend!

Having said all of this, your dosa look a nice colour and I hope you enjoyed them!

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Thanks for this detailed and original post on a topic I've never delved into although have often been curious

may give the subject a try soon after getting all this useful info! :smile:

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      Salt to taste
       
      Directions
      1) Heat oil/ghee(clarified butter) in a pan in medium flame. I used coconut oil here because it tastes best for this dish.
      2) Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, chana dal(split chickpeas), urad dal(split black gram), green chili, dried red chili, ginger and curry leaves. Fry this for 30 seconds in medium flame. The trick is to ensure that these are fried but not burned.
      3) Add a pinch of hing(asafoetida) and mix well.
      4) Now add the cooked rice and coconut. Stir well for about 15 to 20 seconds and switch off the flame.
      5) Finally add salt into this and mix well. You could add peanuts or cashew nuts if you prefer. Goes well with most curries.
    • By Sheel
      Prawn Balchao is a very famous Goan pickle that has a sweet, spicy and tangy flavor to it. 
      For the balchao paste you will need:
      > 8-10 kashmiri red chillies
      > 4-5 Byadagi red chillies
      > 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
      > 1/2 tsk turmeric powder 
      > 1 tsp peppercorn
      > 6 garlic cloves
      > 1/2 tsp cloves
      > 1 inch cinnamon stick
      > Vinegar 
      First you will need to marinate about 250 grams of prawns in some turmeric powder and salt. After 15 minutes deep fry them in oil till them become golden n crisp. Set them aside and add tsp vinegar to them and let it sit for 1 hour. Now, make a paste of all the ingredients mentioned under the balchao paste and make sure not to add any water. In the same pan used for fryin the prawns, add in some chopped garlic and ginger. Lightly fry them and immediately add one whole chopped onion. Next, add the balchao paste amd let it cook for 2-3 minutes. Add in the prawns and cook until the gravy thickens. Finally add 1 tsp sugar and salt according to your taste. Allow it to cool. This can be stored in a glass jar. Let this mature for 1-3 weeks before its use. Make sure never to use water at any stage. This can be enjoyed with a simple lentil curry and rice.
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