VegFest Dosa Recipes
Southern Indian Brunch
Dosas and Iddlis (a steamed fat pancake which uses the same batter) are our favourite dish from our bestselling course “Southern Indian Thali”. Southern Indian food is perfect for vegetarians and vegans-it is rich in flavours and uses fresh vegetables and herbs, coconut and the distinctive tastes of jaggery (raw sugar) and tamarind. On a day course you can learn to make your own spice blends and the secrets of how to balance flavours to create the perfect Thali.
Dosas are large thin pancakes which are made from a batter which has been fermented. We make our batter by soaking whole urad dal and idli rice overnight and then grinding them, and then leaving for another overnight period. For convenience at home it is easier to use the ready ground “flour” (a mix of ground rice and dal) and leave this to ferment overnight. Dosas are traditionally served stuffed with Masala Dosa Potatoes with a small pot of Rasam (a soupy Dal) and Coconut Chutney on the side.
All recipes are wheat free, vegan and serve 4-6
(Urad dal and rice pancakes)
200g dosa flour (a mixture of ground idli rice and urad dal)
400ml warm water
1 tsp salt
½ tsp ground fenugreek
Sunflower or vegetable oil to fry
Mix the dosa flour, fenugreek and water together and leave overnight to ferment-the batter should be bubbly and have grown in size. Add the salt and stir gently.
Heat a non-stick frying pan; wipe oil onto the surface, not leaving any excess. Pour 2 tbsp of mixture onto the pan and spread it out using the back of a spoon to 10 cm round, as thin as possible. After 2 minutes the dosa will set, pour 1 tsp of oil around the edges, when browned, turn over and cook for a few seconds, then remove.
Repeat, making sure the pan is well oiled between each dosa.
200g freshly grated coconut
4 small green chillies, finely chopped
Water to mix
Pinch of salt
1tsp mustard seeds
1 dried red chilli
A few curry leaves
1 tsp ghee or sunflower oil
Small handful freshly chopped coriander
Put the coconut, green chillies and salt in a blender with a little water and mix to porridge like consistency. Decant and set aside.
Heat the ghee in a small frying pan and add the mustard seeds, dried chilli and curry leaves. When the mustard seeds pop, stir the tempering into the coconut mix.
Stir in the fresh coriander and season to taste.
Thumb of ginger, peeled and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp ghee or sunflower oil
50g red split lentils
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp sambhar powder (Southern Indian Curry Powder)
4 tomatoes, quartered
2 tbsps tamarind liquid
2 green chillies, split and de-seeded
Squeeze of lemon
2 tsps ghee or sunflower oil
2 red chillies, split, de-seeded
1 tbsp mustard seeds
Handful of curry leaves
Heat the ghee and stir fry the ginger and garlic until fragrant. Add the lentils, turmeric, sambhar powder, water, tomatoes and tamarind liquid and green chilli.
Simmer for about 20 minutes, then season to taste with salt and a squeeze of lemon and set aside.
Heat the ghee in a frying pan and add the chillies, mustard seeds and curry leaves. When the mustard seeds start to pop, pour the hot ghee over the lentil mixture.
Serve in little bowls as part of a thali or for breakfast with iddlis.
Tips: To make 2 tbsps of tamarind liquid, pull off a walnut sized piece of tamarind from a block of soft tamarind and just cover with boiling water, when it is soft sieve out the hard seeds and retain the pulpy liquid.
Masala Dosa Potatoes
4 medium potatoes (400g), peeled
2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1 red chilli, finely sliced
50ml sunflower oil
Pinch of Asafoetida
1 tsp brown mustard seeds
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
A dozen curry leaves
1 tsp turmeric
Handful fresh coriander, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Boil the potatoes until just tender, cool and then chop into 1cm cubes.
Finely chop the garlic and chilli (or whiz in a small food processor)
Heat the oil in a saucepan and add the asafoetida and the mustard seeds. As soon as the mustard seeds begin to pop add the onion and the curry leaves. Gently fry the onion until soft and translucent.
Add the garlic/chilli paste and the turmeric. Stir-fry for 1 minute, and then add the cooked potatoes. Stir gently and then add the chopped coriander
Season to taste with salt and pepper-you can also add jaggery, tamarind and lemon to balance the flavours.