In this classic Indian recipe the lentils and rice are not cooked, but soaked overnight in water, which softens and ferments them. Then they are pureed. The chlorine in tap water can inhibit the softening of the lentils, so it is best to use bottled spring water. Urad dal are skinned, split lentils that are available in Indian groceries. Typical lentils found in the supermarket will not substitute in this recipe.
7 1/4 cups bottled spring water, divided
1 1/2 cups white basmati rice
1/2 cup urad dal (skinned, split lentils)
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons sea salt
4 teaspoons vegetable oil, divided
How to Make It
Combine 6 cups water, rice, and lentils in a large bowl. Cover and let stand 8 hours. Drain and rinse.
Place rice mixture, 1 1/4 cups water, and sugar in a food processor; puree until smooth (about 1 minute).
Spoon batter into a clean bowl. Cover and let stand in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 12 hours or overnight. Stir in salt.
Heat 1/2 teaspoon oil in a medium cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Spoon about 1/3 cup batter into pan. Turn pancake when top is covered with bubbles and edges look cooked (about 1 minute). Repeat with remaining oil and batter.
I would also add that these are uttapam, and not thin like dosa. Either way, a bit salty and bland on their own, but great for scooping up an Indian entree, or with chutney. Although you have to start them the night before, almost all of the time is hands-off rest time, so the dish is not labor intensive.
This is not dosa, it is Uttapam... Dosas are thin like crepes and Uttapams are like pancake in term of thickness. Different peppers, tomato, and onion can be added too, either in the batter or right after pouring the batter on skillet.....
---Posted by an Indian...
these pancakes were good, heavy, but good. they were a little time consuming, must start the day prior, plus, i could not find skinned lentils so i had to buy the skin on variety and skim off the skin after soaking - not easy!
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