Vegan dosa with potato masala, seasonal greens & coconut chutney
This is a meal of chickpea flour pancakes filled with spiced potatoes and sautéed greens accompanied by coconut and coriander chutneys.
Traditionally, dosa is made with a combination of urad and chana daal, but in this recipe I use gram flour, which is made from channa daal, as it's pretty easy to source.
These dosa make a really wonderful winter comfort food that's also healthy. Combining all those immune-boosting ingredients; turmeric, garlic, ginger and chilli, with vitamin-rich greens and filling potato in a perfect parcel of deliciousness. What's not to love?
There are a few components to this meal so, if you can, get your whole household involved, and have each person working on a different part of the meal.
If you don't have the time or energy to make everything, you can pick and choose which fillings you make – you may just want the greens or just the potato filling. Or you could make the potato masala ahead of time, and reheat. These chutneys go really well with the dosa but you don't have to make both. Or you can just use some shop-bought Indian chutneys instead.
Vegan notes: I've used coconut yoghurt here, but you can use what ever plain yoghurt you like. I chose Coconut Collaborative brand, as it's a delicious vegan yoghurt and it's a London-based company with an ethical farmer-friendly approach, which is right up our street.
For the pancakes
150g gram flour
¼ baking powder
¼ tsp turmeric
½ tsp salt
For the coconut chutney
¾ tsp salt
60g desiccated coconut
1 green finger chilli
1 garlic clove, peeled
For the coriander chutney
1 cup chopped coriander
1 clove garlic
1 green chilli
2 Tbsp desiccated coconut
Pinch of salt
Juice of half a lemon
1 small apple, peeled
Water to loosen
For the potato masala
600g potatoes, cut into 2cm dice
2 Tbsp oil (sunflower, rapeseed or groundnut)
1 onion, sliced
1 Tbsp ginger, finely chopped
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
handful of curry leaves (optional)
pinch asafoetida/hing (optional)
half tsp turmeric
1 tsp salt
For the greens
200g of greens - spinach, chard or kale - thick stems removed and chopped
1 Tbsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
pinch of salt
Squeeze of lemon juice
Handful of frozen peas
1) Make the pancake batter
In a mixing bowl, mix together the gram flour, salt, baking powder and turmeric. Stir in the yoghurt and then, little by little, add a cup of water, stirring it in until you have a smooth batter. Leave to sit while you prepare the fillings.
2) Make the potato masala
Chop the potatoes into cubes (I didn't peel the potatoes, but you can do it you prefer)
Put the potatoes in a saucepan and cover with water. Add a pinch of salt and bring it to the boil. Simmer for about 15-20 minutes, until soft but still holding their shape.
Meanwhile, in a large frying pan or pot, add 2 Tbsp of oil and heat up over a medium-high heat. Add the mustard and cumin seeds. When they start to splutter, add the ginger, onions and chilli. Fry, stirring frequently for about 10 minutes, until soft and starting to brown. Add the hing and curry leaves and give it all a good stir.
Once the potatoes are cooked, drain and add to the pan. Sprinkle over the salt and turmeric and stir it all up to combine. Cook for a further few minutes and then with the back of the spoon or spatula, crush the potatoes a bit so they're fluffy and a bit mashed. This should be done now. Cover and set aside.
3) Make the chutneys
For both of these chutneys, all you do is combine all the ingredients in a food processor and blend them up.
If the mixture is too thick the blender can struggle to work. If this is the case, add a bit of moisture – in the coconut chutney, add a splash of milk. In the coriander chutney, add a splash of water.
4) Cook the pancakes
Heat a drizzle of oil in a non-stick pan over a medium heat. When hot, pour a ladle-full of the batter (about 1/3 of a cup) onto the pan. Leave to cook for a minute or until golden then flip. Cook for another minute on the other side then slide onto a plate. Repeat with the remaining batter. When finished, and don’t wash up the pan – you'll use this for the greens.
5) Make the greens
Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in the same pan and when hot, add the mustard seeds. Let them pop then add the greens and frozen peas. Cook for 2 minutes then add a couple of tablespoons of water and pop a lid on. Steam for 3 minutes and then squeeze the lemon juice over and a sprinkle of salt.
6) Assemble the dosas
This recipe should make 4 – 6 pancakes, depending on how thick you make them. Spoon the potato and greens across the centre of each pancake. Roll them up and serve with the chutneys.