Soaking time: 6- hours | Prep time: 10 mins| Fermenting time: 2 hours | Cook time: 15 mins | Yield: 12-14 medium size thin dosas
- 200 grams (1 cup) raw rice (Kolam/Surai/Belthige)
- 175 grams (1 cup) jaggery, powdered
- 100 grams (1 cup) fresh grated coconut
- 1/4 cup urad dal (black gram dal)
- 1-1/2 – 2 tbsp methi seeds (fenugreek seeds)
- 1/4 cup cooked rice (preferably brown/red rice or boiled rice) or poha (beaten rice)
- 1 level tsp dry yeast (I used instant yeast)
- sugar to taste (approx 1 teaspoon)
- salt to taste (approx 3/4th teaspoon)
1. Wash and soak the raw rice, urad dal and methi seeds for at least 6-7 hours or overnight. Drain and grind it along with the jaggery, grated coconut and cooked rice or beaten rice to a fine thick paste. The consistency of the batter should be slightly thinner than dosa batter so add water in 1/4 cup increments until you get the right consistency.
2. Transfer the batter into a large and deep container that accommodates fermented batter. Note that the fermented batter will overflow so the pan must be tall & deep. Add salt to taste and sugar only if required. The batter should have a fine balance of sweetness & saltiness.
3. To prepare the yeast solution, take yeast in a small bowl and add 2 tablespoons of lukewarm water and 1 teaspoon sugar to help activate the yeast. Stir, cover and keep aside for 10 minutes till the yeast solution turns frothy. If the yeast has not turned frothy (and looks like coffee – flat and not frothy, discard it and start again with a new package. Add the yeast to the prepared batter, stir well so everything is mixed properly. Cover the mouth of the vessel with a muslin cloth or a lid that is not airtight but has an outlet for air to pass. Keep the pan undisturbed, in a warm spot of your kitchen to aid fermentation. In good (warm) weather and when good quality yeast is used the batter takes anywhere between 1-1/2 – 3 hours to ferment. * see notes.
4. When the batter has doubled, give it a good stir. It will immediately reduce in terms of its volume but will have the desired thickness and fluffiness.
5. Heat a non stick tawa/griddle on a medium high and grease it with a little oil. You can use half an onion poked with a fork to apply the oil (traditional method).
6. Reduce the heat to a medium low, take a ladleful of batter and pour in the centre of the pan, let it spread on its own or just help spread it a bit using the back of your ladle. Cover and cook for about half a minute. Since the batter is fermented with yeast it will be very airy (with air bubbles) and light so frying the dosa has to be done carefully. It will seem very soft and wobbly so you have to make sure that the top is cooked or until the surface looks cooked and no wet spots are visible. Using a spatula gently raise the edge, the dosa should be golden brown underneath, if not, let it cook some more. Ensure that the heat is not too high.
7. Drizzle a a few drops of oil around the edges before you flip it over. Use a light hand to remove the dosa (gently shake the spatula back and forth till you get your dosa on it) so and it can be flipped comfortably. Cover and cook on the other side as well. Transfer to a plate and let it cool a bit.
8. Serve hot with chutney or eat them plain when completely cool – they are irresistible even when cold!