The Grubbie Tuesday “How Not To” Series- Making Dosas!

I have to do something unthinkable this morning. I have to willingly bungle up my perfect dosa. To demonstrate to you guys, how NOT TO make dosas.

No worries though. I shall happily sacrifice my ladle-full of perfectly made dosa matter, for the greater good of nouveau-cook- humankind!

For those uninitiated to South Indian cuisine or cooking, dosas are rice and lentil based, fermented pancakes which can be made and had in myriad ways. Today we shall be making the “classic” variety. So, hop along folks and join me while I make breakfast.

I really do hope I don’t botch things up today!

The DO NOT’S….

1. Do not add too much or too little urad dal while preparing your batter (1/3rd to 1/4th ratio to rice – as per preference). This step is key to making good dosas.

2. Do not add too much water to the batter. A runny batter seems to disike the pan, and will keep “running” around and ultimately clump up and become an unedible mess.

3. Do not use the dosa- pan to make/cook/ heat any other item of food. Just don’t. She does not like it.

My seasoned. well- loved flat, cast- iron, flat dosa pan/ tawa.
My seasoned. well- loved flat, cast- iron, flat dosa pan/ tawa.

4. Do not pour batter on a cold pan/ tawa. Pointless exercise.

5. Do not over-grease the pan. Just apply enough oil to give it a hint of a sheen.

Notice the hint of "sheen"...
Notice the hint of “sheen”…

6. Do not apply too much pressure while spreading the batter. Caress and swirl my friend!

Not too runny... Notice the bubbles appearing already...
Not too runny… Notice the bubbles appearing already…
Caress and swirl, my friend!
Caress and swirl, my friend!

7. Do not be impatient. Please wait till the dosa acquires a golden brown color and the edges start to come off the pan before you commence the battle to scrap it off!

Not perfect this time though....
Not perfect this time though….
Be patient... You don't have to wait till they are this brown though...
Be patient… You don’t have to wait till they are this brown though…
The trick is to have a well- seasoned pan...
The trick is to have a well- seasoned pan…

8. Do not let the steaming dosa lay ignored on a plate. Eat the crispy, delight before it withers and dies, please.

9. Do not fret if they initially don’t turn out the way you thought they would. Or how your Mum makes them. Trust me, you don’t want to see my earlier dosa disasters.

I’m sorry. I tried. I really did. Just could not bring myself to purposely foul up a perfectly fine dosa! Moreover, I hardly had enough batter, so I decided it would be wise to not get too carried away. And most importantly, Mr H is late for work and is already patiently waiting at the table with an empty plate in front of him. Waiting for my photography chicanery to be done with…..

This is how I like my dosa.



Golden brown.


With a hint of sourness.

With a slightly fluffy middle.

With spicy chutney/ chammandi.

With some fine roast, filter coffee to chug down.

With a husband who loves the same!

Till the next meal….

Dr J.

6 thoughts on “The Grubbie Tuesday “How Not To” Series- Making Dosas!

Add yours

  1. you forgot the bit where you temper the pan with water between dosas..if it gets too hot you wont have to time to spread the batter,it will cook as soon as you put it on the pan1

    1. Yes….Good tip! Thanks! Many people, especially in the restaurants do it…
      I personally don;t do it though…I manage the heat by adjusting the flame…
      I am going to add it though…

Would love to hear from you folks! Do comment (email optional)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: