Friday, December 31, 2010

Mysooru Masala Dosae - A Crepe With A Spicy Potato Suffing


When some one mentions the name Mysore, what are the thoughts that immediately gush in ones mind? The Mysore palace ? The Brindavan Gardens ? The Chamundi Hills ? Or would it be The Tiger Of Mysore ? Of course all of these and many more. But I must confess that Mysooru Masala Dosae and a hot and strong cup of filter coffee would be topmost in the list, for foodies like me !
We never cooked onions or garlic at home when my great grand mother was alive. Mother mercifully and tactfully satiated our craving by ordering masala dosaes from the near by hotel at least once a week. We used to drool over the heavenly flavours of the dosaes and the accompanying chutney as we impatiently undid the parcels layer by layer. The dosaes were packed in banana leaves which in turn were wrapped up in news papers and were tied with strings. I feel no other dosae can match the taste of those masala dosaes which we had relished in our childhood days.

Raw rice ( I have used sona masuri rice) - 3 cups
Split black gram dal - 1 cup
Beaten rice ( Avalakki ) - 2 tbsps
Fenugreek seeds - 1/2 tsp ( Helps in fermenting and adds to the flavour )
Bengal gram dal - 2 tsps ( This gives a golden hue to the dosae )
Salt - 1 1/2 tsps
Sugar - 1/2 tsp ( Helps to ferment )

1. Wash twice and soak all the ingredients together for four hours. The water should be just enough to cover the ingredients.
2. Check after an hour and add some more water if the previously added water has been absorbed completly.
3. Grind all the ingredients in a mixer adding little water at a time. Table top wet grinders are best for grinding idly and dosae batter.
4. When the batter is smooth and fluffy add salt and sugar and run the mixer/ grinder for a few more minutes.
5. Store the batter in a big vessel with a lid, allowing space for it to rise after fermentation.
Let it rest undisturbed overnight.


Potatoes - 6 ( cooked and peeled )
Onions - 3 ( Sliced )
Chopped green chillies - 3
Finely chopped fresh ginger - 2 tsps
Curry leaves - a few
Chopped fresh coriander leaves - for garnishing
Mustard seeds - 1/4 tsp
Split black gram dal - 1tsp
Bengal gram dal - 1 tsp
Turmeric powder - 1/4 tsp
Salt - 2 tsps
Cooking oil - 2 tbsps

1. Pressure cook potatoes, peel when cooled and keep aside.
2. Heat oil in a pan and add mustard seeds.
3. When the mustard seeds splutter add the black gram dal and bengal gram dal, and roast till golden in colour.
4. Add chopped green chillies , ginger, curry leaves and then the sliced onions.
5. Saute for a few minutes and then add the turmeric powder.
6. Stir well and add a cup of water, cover and cook the onions till they are soft.
7. Mix in salt.
8. Crush potatoes one by one between your palm and fingers.
9.Add the crushed but not mashed potatoes and add more water if required.
10. Cook till the 'palya' becomes semi solid. It should neither be dry nor liquidy.
11. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and keep aside.

Peeled garlic cloves - 1 cup ( Or peel 3 to 4 big whole garlic pods to make 1 cup)
Red chillies - 4
Roasted gram ( hurigadle) - 2 tbsps
tamarind - 1 small marble size
salt - 3/4 tsp
1. Grind all ingredients together to a powder.
2. Add 1/4 cup of water and run the mixer again until you get a smooth chutney.


Freshly grated coconut - 2 cups
Green chillies - 2
Fresh ginger - 2 inches ( Peeled and chopped )
Tamarind - a small marble size
Roasted gram - 4 tbsps
Salt - 3/4 tsp
Coriander leaves ( Chopped ) - 3 tbsps
Cooking oil - 1 tsp
Mustard seeds - 1 pinch
Split black gram dal - 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves - a few
Red chilly - 1

1. Grind all the chutney ingredients together adding little water into a smooth thick chutney if you prefer a 'gatti chutney' or thick chutney. Adjust consistancy by adding more water for a slightly loose chutney.
2. Heat oil and add mustard seeds.
3. When the mustard seeds splutter add the black gram dal and roast till golden in colour.
4. Add broken red chillies and then the curry leaves.
5. Mix the seasoning into the coconut chutney .


Preparing the tava and getting it to the right temperature is key to making dosas. The following procedure whereby the very first tiny dosa is made, (sometimes called pilliyar dosa!) helps in doing just that. This dosa will never get the right colour etc. as shown the in pictures below, and usually gets discarded (or is surreptitiously swallowed by the dosa maker!!) and never actually served.
1. Heat a tava and grease it evenly with a teaspoon of cooking oil.
2. Cut an onion or potato into half and use the cut surface to rub the tava with oil. Alternatively, you may use a piece of clean cloth folded into a stub, to grease the tava.

3. When the tava starts to smoke slightly, pour a tablespoon of batter on it .

4. Dribble a few drops of oil around the trial dosae.
5. When the top looks cooked flip it and cook the other side.

6. With this first dosae your tava should have reached the correct temperature. Too much of heat will cook the batter into a gruel which will stick to the pan. If the heat is not even or if it is insufficient, the dosae will look like the one above. The first one or two dosaes will not get the right texture or the uniform golden colour. But once the tava reaches the appropriate temperature the dosaes will turn out well.
7. Maintain the medium even temperature ( this will prevent the batter from sticking to the tava ) and pour a ladle of batter on the center of the tava.
8. Spread the batter into a circle working the back of the ladle in a circular motion.
A perfect dosae will look like the one below.

9. Dribble a tea spoon of oil around and all over the dosae and wait till the top looks cooked. A perfect dosae need not be cooked on the flip side.
10. The dosae will start turning brownish wherever it is transparent. Lower flame at this stage and dribble little ghee on the dosae. This lends a distinct flavour to the dosae.

11. Spread a spoon of Bellulli Chutney/Garlic chutney on top of the dosae.

12. Arrange 2 tbsps of Palya/Potato Curry on one side of the dosae.
13. Roll, or fold the dosae into half and remove on to a serving plate.
14. Increase flame and wait till the pan smokes, rub with the cut onion or cloth stub dipped in oil, and then pour the batter for the next dosae. If the tava smokes too much, splash the tava with little water and rub it with the cut onion/cloth stub for uniform distribution of heat before you pour the batter for the next dosae. Ensure that the pan is greased well before starting to spread the batter for the next dosae.

Top the cooked dosae with a blob of butter and relish the hot flavoursome Mysooru Masala Dosae with Kayee Chutney/ Coconut Chutney.