The dosa has made its way into exclusive menus, upscale restaurants and undergone makeovers everywhere from street corners to high end gastro-pubs.

Ghee dosa to cocktail dosa Theres a dosa for everyones soul Jaya Shravan
Features Food Thursday, February 02, 2017 - 11:55

For any South Indian who’s grown up with it, a dosa is more than just a dish. Similar only in looks to a pancake, this South Indian delicacy of fermented rice and urad dal batter is more than just food. It’s an emotion. But it’s popularity has long transcended its humble roots and it is now as cosmopolitan as its North Indian counterparts, the poori and the paratha.

Incredibly versatile, the dosa has made its way into exclusive menus, upscale restaurants and undergone makeovers everywhere from street corners to high end gastro-pubs.

Dosa is also extremely popular now due to the wide availability of “ready to use” batters across the country, and even outside of it. With the only thing needed to cook it being a griddle, it is a popular and “safe” dish to make even while staying at an apartment overseas. It's also considered to be a safe and healthy option for breakfast or a light dinner because it is made from fermented dal. It’s easy to digest, has a good mix of carbs and protein and is yet low in calories. 

It’s uncharted as to how many varieties of dosa now actually exist. It has evolved over time and the experimentation is restricted only by the maker’s imagination.

While masala dosa, Mysore masala dosa, podi dosai, paneer dosa and the likes are vastly popular, the filling that goes into dosas is no longer potato-dominant. Even lesser known varieties like Chinese Bhel Dosa (Dosa that’s stuffed with cooked noodles and sprinkled with raw tomatoes, coriander, onions and sev), Muttai dosa (egg dosa) and Pav Bhaji Dosa have found their market in the street food scene.

The humble dosa has also been given a makeover and jazzed up to be served as crispy pyramids or long, neat rolls at fine dining joints along with its trusty sidekicks, the chutney and the sambar. Dosas are the parent variety of all other Indian pancakes – the uthappams, rava dosas, poha dosas, neer (watery rice batter) dosas, millet dosas etc. 

Here are 5 variations to the everyday dosa that you can and should try at home or outside:

Chinese/Schezwan/Noodles Dosa 

Image courtesy: Jaya Shravan

This exotic street food variation offers cooked noodles (think Maggi even!) inside the crispy outer dosa wrapping. Yummilicious!

 Pav Bhaji Dosa

Image courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

What happens when Mumbai meets the dosa? Pav Bhaji dosa of course! Amazingly delicious even with leftover Pav Bhaji, this is one variety that you can’t give a miss! Pssst – try this out with any leftover sabzis too!

Chocolate Dosa 

Image courtesy: Jaya Shravan

What crêpe is to France, dosa is to India. And so it’s only right that we borrow some ideas off of our European counterparts. Think Nutella. Think chocolate spread. Thing sinful. And you’ve got it. The one dosa no kid is going to refuse – chocolate heaven.

Cocktail Dosa

Image courtesy: Jaya Shravan

Who ever knew that the versatile dosa can also be a party food? Serve bite-sized portions with spicy toppings to make enticing starters at your next soiree and you’ll leave tongues wagging for all the right reasons.

Pizza Dosa

Image courtesy: Jaya Shravan

But of course this had to happen. The dosa being a spreadable pancake, the pizza being an Indian favourite. A marriage of the two is made in heaven indeed. Made with any toppings and a healthy amount of mozzarella, this pizza dosa is sure to offer the thinnest crust ever!


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