Monday, April 4, 2022

Dosais and doughnuts

 Dosai is what would come to mind when I say tiffin varieties in Tamil cuisine. The word tiffin refers to having a light meal instead of a full fledged three course heavy lunch. To quote wikipedia - " tiffin is derived from "tiffing", an English colloquial term meaning to take a little drink" . Basically anything like idly , dosai , chapathi - light meals akin, to say a sandwich, is a tiffin item in Indian English.

Dosai is made using a batter made of rice and lentils. We use a utensil thats something like a skillet. Its traditionally made of iron though we call it a dosakkal (literally translates to dosa stone). A few years ago, i got quite a big one when I visited my home city of Chennai. This one as per the seller's instructions had to be soaked in starch water got from washing rice for two to three days to kind of get it ready for the stove. I am ignorant of the science behind it, though.

A typical Sunday evening in my kitchen would unfold like this. The skillet is placed on the stove, and then a splash of water on it to check if its hot enough, gives out a sizzling noise. A drop of oil is smeared for some lubrication. A ladel or two of batter is added and spread in circles into a dosa. Some oil is added along the border. 

The amount of oil added depends on which side of the tug of war you are on - taste/crispiness or health.  There are times if the skillet is too hot and the batter sticks to it , refusing to budge.. thats another tug of war any dosa maker would be familiar with! 

 Different types of ingredients like semolina (rava) , millet flour , rice flour , wheat flour or for that matter ground oatmeal can be mixed with water , some buttermilk , green chillies , corriander etc to make a batter and then made into crispy instant dosas. This version we can experiment with as we please . 

A permanent occupant of my kitchen shelf is what we call at home as the milagai podi - dosai chilli powder. A mix of lentils and red chillies are roasted in a bit of oil and then ground to a course powder. Whenever we make dosas, all we need is this powder mixed with some oil as an accompaniment.

Food from other lands:

Doughnut. For some time, the term had me imagining some distant cousin of almonds and cashews. Later i came to know of this sweet snack. The sight of the donuts with different dressings on the rack is so captivating, is it not ? 

Food for thought

This is actually a funny quote that I remembered. 

Its from a Tamil movie I saw long back and it goes.

Dilhi kku raaja naalum patti sollai thattaadha

Raaja as most may know means king.

Patti - grandmother

Sollai - (of) words

Thattaatha - dont disobey or disregard

Dilhi - Delhi 

Even if you are the king of Delhi , pay heed your grandmother's words. Ha ha ... Its a comedy movie but on serious thought , once we become adults we think we know it all. But we are all learning , always , every step we take in our lives. We need to remember that the seniors or elderly folks  have a lifetime of experience. More oft than not, they have simple solutions to the most baffling of our problems! 


  1. Wow dosai's a crime to read this as an just having fruit bowl today๐Ÿ˜ tempting post as always....and donuts ..can we say no to them ? Sigh

    As always fun quote too

  2. I shouldn't have visited you blog today. I am fasting and now I am craving for big, crispy Dosas and Donuts with chocolate icing and lot of sprinkles.

    I agree one should always listen to your grandmother, no matter how important you are....

  3. Thank you for dropping by. This is Mysoul.

    I will be making dosai over the weekend. I call the doughnut Shakarae Vada. I love that Tamil Dialogue. And agree- when it comes to food preparation better listen to grandma.๐Ÿ˜Š

  4. Oh, tht dosa sounds nice. Besides, I love all kinds of flabread and anythign similar :-)
    I ate my first doughnut when I lived in Dublin. It's good!

    The Old Shelter - Enter the New Woman

  5. As a gandma myself, I agree - everyone should listen to their grandma.

    And the dosas sound delicious.

  6. Absolutely lip smacking post as always. Jayshree , I really wish I was the owner of a South Indian Restaurant ( read Naivedyam, my favorite in Delhi ) I would have eaten the Dosai for every meal of my day .I simply love it๐Ÿ˜ . I prefer the stuffed one, as I am a potato lover ๐Ÿคฉ. Doughnuts ๐Ÿฉ although I m not very fond . And the quote in the end is awesome too ๐Ÿ‘ ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜Ž

  7. Have almost weaned myself away from Idlis, but dosas are something I still enjoy! Coming from a Tamil household, have had so many and so many types of dosas! I love donuts, actually anything with chocolate in them! Enjoying the Tamil quotes as well. Good going, good luck with the rest!

    Here's my post for D:
    D: Deception Point