Friday, January 18, 2008

Masala dosas

Due to my Indian holiday, it has been a long time since I've actually cooked a full meal. I really missed my teeny tiny green kitchen and moreover, missed wiping counters and peering into my pantry every 5 seconds. Does anyone else feel just a bit useless when not able to cook in your own kingdom? I have been dying to cook, however because of jet lag I can't muster up the energy past a one pot meal.

I've been waking up at 4am everyday since I've been back which is pretty cool because I get so much time in the mornings to do a lot of prep work for the evening.
Yes, you can call me a morning person.

So yesterday at 4am, with all this time on my hands, I soaked 2 different types of lentils along with parboiled rice and fenugreek seeds for something like dosa. I say this, because traditionally, dosa has around a 1:3 ratio of lentils to rice. In my case, however, the ratio was almost 1:1 with an extra cup of rice thrown in because I felt like it. Does anyone know the proper name for this? I wanted to say peserattu, but I believe that is made only of dal/lentils. And also different in the fact that this dosa I made requires no fermenting time. Just grind up the soaked dal and rice and get goin'.

When I got home from work I ground up the lentils (dal) and rice mixture in the blender with a little bit of the soaking liquid to make a thin batter and kept aside while I made the potato masala filling.

I heated up some oil and added a few cloves, some mustard seeds, asafeotida (hing), and a sprig of curry leaves and a little urad dal.

I then added 3 chopped red potatoes, a huge jalapeno, and half a red onion and salt. Cover and cook on low heat for 10-15 minutes and stir in between. Towards the end, add a little turmeric. Don't let it get mushy, the vegetables should retain their shape.

These dosas need to be made on low-medium heat because of the even ratio of the dal to rice. Traditional dosas should generally be made on medium to high heat. Oil your pan well and pour a ladleful or two and swirl it around like a crepe or pancake batter. Add a few drops of oil around the edges and let cook for 2-3 minutes until lightly brown and then flip and cook for another minute more. Add a little filling in the middle and fold over. Serve hot. Pictures to come soon...

A sidenote to all the Indian restaurant owners/chefs out there - why do so many restaurants turn their dosa filling into mush? I am not a baby and I am sure most of your customer base isn't either. We don't want our masala potatoes turned into bland, tasteless, Gerber crap in a bottle.


Pooja V said...

wow...i love dosas..a staple in my house over the weekends.

Mansi Desai said...

hey Alpa, thanks for visiting my blog:) btw, I'm hosting a Game Night event on my blog this month, and would be good if you could can send in an older entry too:) check details here:

Hope to see yout there!

DEEPA said...

one of my favrt dosa !!!would never say no

Cynthia said...

Now this is the kind of breakfast that I'd enjoy. So know in advance when I visit, this is what I'd like to have :D

Alpa said...

Cynthia - Most definitely, you have an open invitation!