Few years ago, one day my brother and I were roaming around Gandhi bazaar, Basavangudi in Bangalore in the evening. My brother is a great foodie, he knows almost all the good restaurants in Bangalore. He tried to take me to these restaurants every time we went out. So, all of a sudden, he said, there is a famous restaurant called Vidyarthi Bhavan in that area and they serve these amazing beNNe(butter) dosas. Lets go there.
In my mind, I thought it would be a big posh restaurant. We reached there and I was shocked to see the atmosphere. It was an old restaurant packed with people. There was a huge line of customers waiting to be seated. I told my brother that I didn’t want to eat there and I was wanting to get out of that place. But as always, he declined. Anyway, after we waited for like 45 minutes, we got a seat. We had to share our table with few more people as there was a huge crowd. Then I saw a waiter arriving with a huge stack of plates with dosas arranged one above other. These dosas were so good that, I even forgot I was upset with my brother for taking me there .
Since then, I have read and heard about this restaurant innumerable number of times, and many people agree that those are the best dosas you could get. Yummmm….
So with that background, you can guess how happy I would be, when my dad gave me two neatly bound books containing hundreds of recipes from different Kannada magazines, and when I opened the first book, the first page had this recipe. This was a cut out from “Tharanga”, a Kannada weekly. The owner of Vidyarthi Bhavan – Ramakrishna Adiga had shared the recipe for their beNNe dosa. God bless him for sharing this with readers, “Tharanga” for publishing it and my dad for saving this cut out and passing it on to me. I could not stop drooling over it again and again, so I gave it a try today. It was amazing. Crispy from outside, the palya(potato bhaji) was superb, the chutney had a strong ginger taste to it. In all, just mind blowing. Try it once to know what I am saying. I am trying to translate the article here.
1 cup urad dal
2 cups dosa rice
2 cup rice flour
1/2 cup maida
1/8th tea spn baking soda
Dosa rice is available in almost all grocery stores in India. It is slightly thicker than regular rice. I used regular rice for this.
Soak urad dal and rice separately for 2-3 hrs. Grind dal to a very smooth paste. Now grind rice to a smooth paste. Mix both well. Now mix rice flour, maida, salt to it and mix well. Leave it for 4-6hrs (or overnight). Do not make the batter too thin.
Add soda to it and mix well.
While making dosas:
- Tava used for making the dosas should be thick. If it is too thin, dosas get burnt soon. I used my regular dosa pan(non stick).
- Heat tava. When it is hot, apply some oil to it. Now sprinkle a handful of water on hot tava and spread it. Again apply some oil. Spread one or two dosas and check if they come out easily.
- Every time while making dosas, first apply oil to tava, sprinkle water and then spread dosa. (I didn’t try this on my non stick tava since I was a bit concerned that the non stick coating would come out by sprinkling cold water on hot tava).
- Once dosa is spread, drop a tea spoon of oil on it. Flip the dosa. Flip again and spread a table spoon of bhaji/palya over it, spread little oil/butter on it and fold it.
(I folded it in half which was more convenient to me. I think in the restaurant they fold it like this, I din’t remember it. I was so excited that I even forgot to flip the dosa, but still it was great).
Potato stuffing – Palya or bhaji
2 cup boiled and mashed potatoes
1 cup finely chopped onions
1/2 tea spn mustard seeds
1/2 tea spn urad dal
1/2 tea spn chana dal
4-5 green chilies
6-7 curry leaves
2 tbl spn fresh/frozen coconut
A pinch turmeric
1/2 tea spn finely chopped ginger
Heat oil and add mustard seeds, urad dal, chana dal. When dal is slightly browned, add curry leaves, ginger, green chilies and onion. Fry till they turn translucent. Pour 1/2 cup water, salt and turmeric. Cook for sometime. Now add the potatoes and mix well. The potatoes should get mashed well for maximum taste. Garnish with coconut.
1/2 cup dalia (hurigadale/putani)
1 cup fresh or frozen coconut
1/2 tea spn chopped ginger
4-5 green chilies
Grind all the ingredients to a smooth paste. Add a little water to bring it to required consistency.