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Suitable for vegans
Category Miscellaneous
Makes 10
Preparation 1 hour + soaking and fermenting
Cooking 50 minutes

Rating: Rated 0 / 5 (0 ratings)

Most pancakes, by their very nature, are quickly made, spur of the moment affairs. Not these southern Indian dosas – this is a recipe for the weekend, when the weather keeps you inside.
You need to start the day before you want to eat these traditionally vegan, gluten-free pancakes. Put the dhal and rice to soak, then later grind them and leave the batter to ferment overnight. A quicker version can be made using urad or gram flour and ground rice, but I found that neither the flavour nor the texture is as good.


  • 90g split urad dhal (the black skins are removed and the pale creamy pulses are left)
  • water
  • 1 tsp cumin, dry-fried and crushed
  • 200g long-grain rice
  • ½ tsp salt
  • vegetable oil


Stage 1

Wash and drain the dhal and rice separately. Put each into a bowl and pour over boiling water. Leave to soak for 8 hours.

Stage 2

Drain. Grind the dhal a tablespoonful at a time to make a paste. Scrape it into a large bowl. Repeat with the rice and add it to the dhal paste. Add 300ml water to the mixture and, using a hand blender, process until it is quite smooth and light. Cover with a tea towel and leave the batter in a warm place overnight.

Stage 3

The next day the batter should be a bit bubbly. Stir in the salt and cumin. Heat a well-seasoned heavy frying pan or griddle. Add a teaspoon of oil and wipe it all over the pan using kitchen paper. Keep the heat low and constant.

Stage 4

Pour in about a small ladleful of batter (around 85ml). Wait a few seconds and then, in a gentle spiral movement, use the bowl of the ladle to spread out the batter to about 16cm (the size of a side plate). Cover the pan and cook for 2 minutes. The top should look set – peek underneath by carefully lifting the edge with a spatula. If it is nicely browned, slide the spatula around and turn the dosa over. Cook until the second side is speckled with brown spots.

Stage 5

Repeat with the remainder of the batter, wiping a little oil over the pan before starting the next dosa. You can keep the cooked dosas warm in a tea towel or covered in a low oven. Eat immediately with chutneys and pickles or, for a more substantial meal, add a filling like tamarind potatoes.




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Recipe author

Published by: Vegetarian Living
Recipe and styling: Sarah Beattie
Photography: Sarah Beattie

Nutritional info

Nutritional values are per serving.

  • Calories: 112g
  • Fat: 2g
  • Saturated fat: 0.5g
  • Protein: 4g
  • Carbohydrates: 22g
  • Sugars: 0g
  • Fibre: 1g
  • Salt: 0.3g

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