Dosas and Dal

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It’s day 4 of my alphabetical recipe experiment which brings us to “D”.

When I made dosas for the Daring Cooks last month, I really loved the meal and wanted an excuse to make it again. But since the dosas for the daring cooks were basically a curried crepe made with spelt flour, I wanted to try to make them the traditional way, from soaked rice and urad dal (black gram lentils) that are ground into a batter.

Though dosas are not necessarily traditionally filled with dal, I figured that since I was doing this for “D” day, I might as well cook up a dal for the filling, as well.

There’s an Indian grocery not too far from where I live that I’ve driven by countless times; I’ve always wanted to stop and check it out, and since I was on a mission to pick up the what I needed to make my dosas and dal yesterday, I finally did.

The shopkeeper was very sweet and recommended that for the dosas, I should buy urad dal flour instead of the whole lentils, so all I’d need to do was soak it with rice flour, water and a little salt overnight and the dosa batter would be ready without all that grinding business. She also told me how to make a simple yet very tasty dal.

I took all of her advice and was very pleased with the results- a gluten-free pancake that tastes just like the dosas I’ve eaten in Indian restaurants and a spicy vegetarian filling that’s high in protein and incredibly good.

Dosa Recipe with Urad Dal Flour

1/2 cup urad dal flour
1 cup rice flour
pinch of Himalayan or sea salt
1 Tb. whey-optional
water needed to form batter

In a medium bowl, mix the flours, salt and enough water to make a thick, smooth batter.


Cover with a damp cloth and allow to sit for at least 8 hours or overnight.

Heat a cast iron skillet and add a teaspoon or so of coconut oil or ghee so it coats the bottom of the pan. Ladle a small scoop of batter into the pan, and using the bottom of your spoon, spread the batter out into a not-to-thin round shape.


Allow to cook until bubbles start to form and the underside starts to brown.


Carefully flip over and allow to cook on the other side. Not the most beautiful dosa ever, I admit, but still quite yummy.


Split Moong Dal Recipe

1 cup yellow split moong dal, washed and drained
3 cups water
1 Tb. coconut oil, olive oil, or ghee
1 onion, peeled and chopped
1 Tb. finely minced garlic
1 Tb. finely minced ginger
1 small chili pepper, minced
1 tsp. garam masala
1/2 tsp. cumin
½ tsp turmeric
pinch of asafetida (hing)
Himalayan or sea salt to taste

Place the split moong dal and the water in a large soup pot. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce the heat to simmer and let cook until the dal is tender (15-20 minutes). Remove from heat.

In a skillet, heat the oil and add the onion, garlic and ginger. Cook for a few minutes until the onions are soft and the herbs are fragrant. With the heat on very low, add the spices and mix well to combine all of the ingredients.

Add the onion mixture to the cooked dal and mix well to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary.

Serve with dosas and chutney of your choice. I had mine with homemade tomato chutney- delicious!

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