Rice-Flour Dosas With Mustard Seeds and Black Pepper (India)
From Madhur Jaffrey’s World-of-the-East Vegetarian Cooking by Madhur Jaffrey
Cooked on: October 2, 2011
Servings: makes 8 dosas
Skill level: Intermediate. Be sure to follow instructions.
1 cup all-purpose white flour
1 cup rice flour (also called rice powder)
1/8 to ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
½ cup peeled and chopped onion
¼ cup freshly grated coconut (poke the eyes first and drain the “milk,” then crack the hell out of it on a sidewalk)
1 ¼ tsp. salt
1 cup plain yogurt (the sourer the better)
About 7 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 tsp. whole black mustard seeds
¾ to 1 tsp. coarsely crushed or very coarsely ground black peppercorns
Put the white flour, rice flour, cayenne, onion, coconut, salt, yogurt, and ¾ cup water into the container of a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth and pour into a bowl.
Heat 1 tbsp. oil in a small skillet or pot over a medium flame. When hot, put in the mustard seeds. As soon as the mustard seeds begin to pop (almost immediately), pour the seeds and oil over the batter. Add the black pepper and mix thoroughly.
See that you have everything you need for making the pancakes: a 7 – 8 inch non-stick skillet, a cup containing oil, a teaspoon, a rounded soupspoon for spreading out the batter, and a 1/3 cup measuring cup. You also need a plate to hold the pancakes and a second plate that you can invert over the first to keep the pancakes warm and moist (I put wax paper in-between each pancake).
Set the skillet over medium-low heat. Dribble ½ tsp. oil into it. When the skillet is hot, pick up 1/3 cup of batter and plop it right in the center of the skillet. Immediately put the round bottom of the soupspoon very lightly on the blob of batter and using a gentle but continuous spiral motion, spread the batter outward. You should end up with a pancake 6 to 7 inches in diameter (the thinner, the better). Dribble ½ tsp of oil over the pancake and another tsp. just outside its edges. Cover and cook for 3 ½ to 5 minutes or until the pancake has turned a reddish-gold color on the bottom and is slightly crisp along the edges. It may not color uniformly. Remove the cover and turn the pancake over. Cook the second side uncovered until it, too, has developed reddish-gold spots, about 4 minutes. Remove with a spatula and keep on the nearby plate. Cover with the second inverted plate. Make all the pancakes this way, stacking them all on the same plate.
If you wish to reheat these pancakes, cover them well in aluminium foil, and place in a 400° F oven for about 15 minutes.
Serve with South Indian Coconut Chutney or any vegetable of your choice (Zakiya’s Potatoes and Onions are awesome with these).
The dosas take a bit of extra care and time. For all of that, they are worth it. This dosa recipe is slightly spicy, but not too spicy. My baby LOVED them. My whole family LOVED them. My husband has requested that I make these again.