Monday, September 14, 2009

Daring Cooks Challenge - Indian Dosas

This was my favorite challenge so far. Thank you Debyi from Healthy Vegan Kitchen for this vegan, gluten free, and low fat recipe from the refresh cookbook by Ruth Tal. It may not sound as though this was much of a challenge for me since it is exactly the way I normally cook, but it was my first attempt at dosas. I’ve made Indian food numerous times, so I decided to use the recipes Debyi provided for the entire dish, with the addition of potatoes to my filling since that is Chase’s favorite.

First I made the chickpea filling. It was easy to make and quite good. I found it a little salty on its own, but perfect when eaten with the dosas. I made a half recipe because, well it’s just me here!

Curried Garbanzo Filling
This filling works great as a rice bowl topping or as a wrap too, so don't be afraid to make a full batch.
5 cloves garlic
1 onion, peeled and finely diced
1 carrot, peeled and finely diced
1 green pepper, finely diced (red, yellow or orange are fine too)
2 medium hot banana chilies, minced
2 TBSP (16gm) cumin, ground
1 TBSP (8gm) oregano
1 TBSP (8gm) sea salt (coarse)
1 TBSP (8gm) turmeric
4 cups (850gm/30oz) cooked or canned chick peas (about 2 cans)
½ cup (125gm/4oz) tomato paste
1. Heat a large saucepan over medium to low heat. Add the garlic, veggies, and spices, cooking until soft, stirring occasionally.
2. Mash the chickpeas by hand, or in a food processor. Add the chickpeas and tomato paste to the saucepan, stirring until heated through.

I also made the coconut curry sauce. It too was quite easy to make and was a soothing complement to the spicy filling.

Coconut Curry Sauce
This makes a great sauce to just pour over rice as well. This does freeze well, but the texture will be a little different. The flavor is still the same, but the texture is a little runnier, not quite as thick as it was before freezing.

1 onion, peeled and chopped
2 cloves garlic
½ (2½ gm) tsp cumin, ground
¾ (3¾ gm) tsp sea salt (coarse)
3 TBSP (30gm) curry powder
3 TBSP (30gm) spelt flour (or all-purpose GF flour)
3 cups (750ml/24oz) vegetable broth
2 cups (500ml/24oz) coconut milk
3 large tomatoes, diced

1. Heat a saucepan over medium heat, add the onion and garlic, cooking for 5 minutes, or until soft.
2. Add the spices, cooking for 1 minutes more. Add the flour and cook for 1 additional minute.
3. Gradually stir in the vegetable broth to prevent lumps. Once the flour has been incorporated, add the coconut milk and tomatoes, stirring occasionally.
4. Let it simmer for half an hour.

I did not photo the sauce or the dosas alone. I guess they were too brown and boring to make me think to get a picture. So you’ll have to trust me that they both turned out fine. I had at least a dozen little six-inch dosa pancakes to fill and plate.

Dosa Pancakes
1 cup (120gm/8oz) spelt flour (or all-purpose, gluten free flour)
½ tsp (2½ gm) salt
½ tsp (2½ gm) baking powder
½ tsp (2½ gm) curry powder
½ cup (125ml/4oz) almond milk (or soy, or rice, etc.)
¾ cup (175ml/6oz) water
cooking spray, if needed

1. Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl, slowly adding the almond milk and water, whisking until smooth.
2. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Spray your pan with a thin layer of cooking spray, if needed.
3. Ladle 2 tablespoons of batter into the center of your pan in a circular motion until it is a thin, round pancake. When bubbles appear on the surface and it no longer looks wet, flip it over and cook for a few seconds. Remove from heat and repeat with remaining batter.
Makes 8 pancakes.
To plate, a little sauce on the dosa, followed by filling, then roll into crepe or cone, or fold in half like omelette. More sauce on top. Serve with rice and side veggies.
For a side dish I made Rice with Cabbage, but I overcooked the rice and it was mush. I swear I will never be able to make a proper rice. The only way I can get it right is to bake it in the oven. You’ll probably tell me to get a rice cooker. I had one, but I lost it. I don’t know how you lose something like that. I just know I can’t find it anywhere in my house. Anyway, the rice and cabbage was pretty, but you can see it is more akin to mashed potatoes. You can’t discern one grain in this picture!

I also sliced some cucumbers and carrots for a side salad, and topped the dosas with plenty of cilantro.

Indian food is always a favorite here because it’s so flavorful and delicious - without meat, fat, or gluten!


Jes said...

What beautiful dosas! I've always wanted to make some at home--this is great inspiration!

Mihl said...

What a beautiful presentation! Thank you for the recipe, this sounds like something I could serve to guests.

bezajel said...

Looks super tasty! I'll be putting that on my to-make list :)

VeganCowGirl said...

Great job! They look amazing!

Catherine Weber said...

Looks fantastic! I'll have to bookmark this one.

P.S. I have the same trouble with rice -- what's the trick, anyway???

miss v said...

i've never had dolsa's before - i love the presentation. and i've been on a total curry kick lately - perfect!

Charlotte said...

Looks so good! Before I read what the chickpea filling was, I looked at it and immediately thought, "Apple rhubarb filling". Weird, huh? Guess I want some apple rhubarb pie. But curried chickpeas is way more interesting.

Also, the dosas look similar to injera... are they sour like injera at all?

Anonymous said...

I love dosas but my first (and only) attempt at making them from a mix was disastrous. I'm going to have to try your recipe. Were they soft like pancakes or more crunchy?

Unknown said...

i love every nation's individual take on pancakes :D

aTxVegn said...

Edie and Charlotte - I'm not sure I made proper dosas, but they were soft yet a little crispy around the edges because they were so thin. And they weren't as thin as what I've had in restaurants. Make sure your pan is not too hot when you make them. They cook up in a matter of seconds.

They are not at all sour and they are not the texture of injera.

recipe lover said...

The pancakes look great. Thanks for the recipe, I must try it.

Andrea said...

Beautiful presentation! The meal looks delicious. About the rice - my husband's rice always comes out mushy even in a rice cooker. Go figure. But a South American friend taught me to toast the rice in a pan before cooking about 5 minutes until the rice turns opaque. You can use a little oil or not.

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

Ooh, I LOVE Dosa, yours looks fabulous!

Oraphan said...

You did a great job! Your Dosas look amazing, thanks for the recipes.

Ricki said...

I've never had dosas either--they look amazing! The filling is right up my alley. :)

And I GOT THE BERRIES in the mail!! I am so excited. Think I may have to go trippin this weekend! Thanks so much, Diann! :)

kmouse said...

Wonderful!!! All of it! And sorry about the rice. A rice cooker would help greatly if you decide to get one eventually. (Maybe Chase stole your rice cooker?) :)

jessy said...

your dosas look perfect, Diann! dan & i are going to have to try them - oh my goodness - mmmmmmmmmmmm! we looooove us some indian food yummies as well (hooray for gluten-free, too!)!

sorry the rice got over-cooked - it looks pretty though! :)

Erin said...

Your dosas turned out so well! I'm definitely going to hang on to this recipe to try myself.

That is hilarious that you lost a rice cooker! I sympathize greatly with you as a former rice-messer-upper myself. Having a rice cooker has definitely helped me out, as well as learning to keep the heat low and not take the lid off when I'm cooking it myself.

The Voracious Vegan said...

Indian food is my favorite and I always love a good dosa. Gorgeous photos and what a great recipe, I can't wait to try it for myself.