For Sandra Madsnapper - Dosai Part II

Red lentils  (masoor dahl)

Red Lentils and methi (fenugrek) seeds soaking.  (Smell some methi; you will quickly decide whether you want that flavour).  I don't use any particular quantities as you can drain off some water after they have soaked.

Soaked.  (I added some millet.)

In the blender.  Add more water if it won't blend.  You want it the consistency of pancake batter - pourable. (Before you watch this prepare to laugh - I thought video was paused when it was actually recording, and the bit I thought I'd recorded was actually turned off.)

Put the batter in a bowl covered with a cloth and leave it to ferment for about 8 hours - little gas bubbles form (8-9 hours according to the online info I read - the writers of such advice might be in a warm climate like yours).  I let it ferment a couple of days in the fridge - slower but still effective.

Just before you cook them add salt (not before as it inhibits fermentation).  I actually salt the cooked pancake but that is my preference.

Pan - I use one of those wonder pans that nothing sticks to and the tiniest smear of oil (just for the first one) and a slightly higher heat than I would normally use for pancakes or crepes - about half way up (or down) the heat range available on my stove.

Spoonful (big spoonful) in the middle of the hot pan and smear it around and around with the back of the spoon.

Then I leave it until I can see the 'brown' peeking through the thin bits.  That means it is crispy on the cooking side.  Flip it over and give it a little bit more  (I don't make them crispy both sides).

Eat them hot.  I roll them up and dip them in whatever else I am eating - the juices of my cassoulet even!  YAM Aunty says she makes big batches and freezes them.  I wasn't really impressed with them 'later' - might have been better if I refried them a bit.  The other thing is that YAM Aunty makes hers with 2/3rd rice and 1/3 lentils.  I believe that is closer to the traditional ratio.  My Singaporean friend makes hers with dal and millet.  I tried that (soaked the millet with the lentils and milled it all together).  It works.  I can't say it made a huge difference to the taste or the texture.  It might have given them a bit more substance.

Fermentation is a slightly souring process (think sour dough bread), so it you leave the batter too long it does take on a slightly sour flavour (think sour dough bread) but I'm good with that - flavour is a personal thing.

There are about half a dozen dahls you can use - I believe the most common one to use is urad dahl (also called urid dal).  Moong dahl is popular (from mung beans), and some people add toor dahl (pigeon peas) or chana dahl (chick peas) for flavour or to improve crispness.  It is all very personal/family tradition/regional variations etc.  And like I wrote in the last post on this, you can use rice (several types), millet, tapioca, or even palm sago as the starch component.  I suspect if you are not a purist and willing to experiment you could try quinoa, sorghum, yam flour....

Bon appetit


  1. Who’d of thought you could make pancakes with lentils. Lentil soup was a staple when I w was growing up. I’ll occasionally cook it but hubby and I both had it so much growing up. We can happily live without them now lol

  2. It's time for you to publish your cookery book!

  3. Hari Om
    Yay! Though I meant you can freeze the batter mix, not the dosa... YAM xx

    1. Aaah thank you - I hadn't thought of that. There is a batch in the fridge today so I will freeze some of that. I am desperately trying to use up food supplies that I won't be permitted to move into NZ - many kilos of rice and peas, lentils, beans, millet, quinoa etc. - so lots more of meals like this. xxTM

  4. thank you, I can adjust this I think. the hard part is soak, wait, blend, soak 8 hours not sure if I do that part ha ha... I may try this with other lentils, I believe I would like the taste and the crispy part.. since I could only eat one, freezing might work..

  5. I agree with Jabblog you should publish that cookery book TM.

  6. well that was interesting - love trying new ideas like that

  7. Sounds delish. Unfortunately I'm the only one here who enjoys dahl, but always have it when I get the chance. Arilx


Post a Comment