Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Dhosa - easy quick almost dhosas

I fancied some dhosa today  Dhosas are thin pancakes made from a fermented rice and urid lentil mixture, and are eaten in South India.  There the chefs make spectacular shapes when serving these, including giant rolls and fans.

Last time I made them I did the full process-soak urid lentils and long grain rice separately for a specified number of hours, grind utill smooth in the blender, mix and leave to ferment for several more hours.  Today I didn't feel like doing all of that and so simply mixed my usual flour (405urid, 40%tapioca and 20% cornmeal) with some brown rice flour- and I don't have any idea what type of rice this was.  The protein balance of different rice varies and it makes a difference in how the rice behaves in recipe. .

These dhosas weren't completely like proper dhosa, and the shorter maturing time meant that they hadn't fermented properly.  The acid flavour of the fully fermented dough is too strong for some so this milder version may be more palatable, although the nutritional value will be slightly less as the long fermenting increases bio-availability of some nutrients.

This amount serves two/three with some curry

125g rice flour
70g gf flour mix (40%urid, 40%tapioca, 20%cornmeal)
300g water

Mix until smooth and leave to sit for a couple of hours or more in a warm place.  The dough should be quite thin - like single cream.  If it is too thick add a bit more water.  You should be able to place a ladlefull on a cold crepe pan and swirl it around so that it is covered completely.

To cook
Start with a cold pan.  Place a ladlefull of batter on the pan and swirl so that you get an even thin pancake. Cook on a medium heat until the bottom begins to brown. You will be able to see this without lifting the pancake as it is so thin.

Lift off carefully and roll to whatever shape you want while it is warm.

Cool the pan under cold water until you can touch it without any discomfort.  If you don't let the pan cool between dhosa you will not be able to get the dhosa to be thin.  Instead they will be lumpy and thick.  I read up about making dhosa and this is how they are usually made.

Because the pan is cold at the start of each dhosa they take longer to cook than if you were making crepe in a hot pan.  Be patient.  You may find them difficult to make neat- but they taste just as good.  The one I photographed was about my sixth - I didn't quite believe the necesity for the cold pan to start with.

These dhosa are partially soft and flexible and partly crisp.  I ate mine served with spicy chickpeas.

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