Dosa or Dosai or Thosai is to a Southern Indian what Roti or Chapati is to a Northern Indian.
Dosa is a type of pancake made from a fermented batter. It is similar to a crepe.
Dosa is high in carbohydrates and contains no added sugars or saturated fats. As its key ingredients are rice and black gram, it is also a good source of protein. The fermentation process increases the vitamin B and vitamin C content. There are also instant mix products for making dosa which usually contain higher amounts of rice.
A mixture of rice and black grams that has been soaked in water is ground finely to form a batter. Some add a little fenugreek seeds soaked along with the rice. The proportion of rice to lentils is generally 4:1 or 5:1. The batter is allowed to ferment overnight. After the overnight fermentation, the batter is mixed with water to get the desired thickness. The batter is then ladled onto a hot tava (griddle) greased with oil or ghee (clarified butter). It is spread out evenly with the base of a ladle or bowl to form a pancake.
A dosa is served hot, either folded in half or rolled like a wrap. It is also usually served with chutney and sambar. The mixture of black grams and rice can be replaced with highly refined wheat flour or semolina.
Dosa can be stuffed with fillings of vegetables and sauces to make a quick meal. They are typically served with a vegetarian side dish:
• Chutney: examples include coconut chutney (a semi-solid paste made up of coconut, dal (lentils), green chilli and mint or coriander)
• There are varieties of chutney served along with Dosa[
• Idli podi or molagapodi: a powder of spices and sometimes desiccated coconut mixed with sesame oil or ghee
• Indian pickles
The most popular version version is the Masala Dosa, with a filling of the potato masala. Mysore Masala is the spicier version of it. Sada (plain) is without filling, paper dosa is a thin and crisp version. Rava dosa is made crispier using semolina. Though dosa typically refers to the version made with rice and lentils, many other versions exist.