[NOTE: I made this dish as part of a Daring Cooks challenge. This means it was an experiment that I most likely only made once, maybe twice, before posting here.]
For the Daring Cooks September challenge, we made vegan dosas adapted from the reFresh cookbook by Ruth Tal. Fresh is a popular chain of vegetarian/vegan restaurants in Toronto, Canada with three published cookbooks teaching how to cook Fresh food at home. Our host Debyi of Healthy Vegan Kitchen chose this fun challenge for us, and I for one am grateful because this is the first time I’ve ever made Indian food and witnessed our two older boys actually eat it. Builder Guy (6) has recently developed a taste for spicy foods—good thing because we like our spices—and Top Gun (5) is finally coming around and trying new things. Monkey Boy is still a picky three-year-old, but he did eat one of the plain dosas. We thought the dosas were delicious and would eat that coconut curry sauce on just about anything.
The challenge had three components: the dosa pancakes, the garbanzo filling, and the coconut curry sauce. The primary rule was that everything had to be animal-free, but we were given freedom to come up with our own vegan fillings. Also, the challenge was to be 99% oil free, so we could use light amounts of cooking spray when sautéing, but that was it. The dosa recipe departs from the traditional fermented rice and black lentil base, calling for spelt or a gluten-free all-purpose flour. I forgot to acquire one of the recommended flours and had to use what I had on hand. The flour soaked up the liquids so much that the batter was too thick, so I thinned it with more almond milk a few tablespoons at a time until the consistency was thin enough to spread easily. Because I adore cilantro with curry, I added some chopped leaves to the garbanzo filling and used it as a garnish as well.
We were excited to use more of our homegrown tomatoes, garlic, and peppers for the dish. The tomatoes were a mix of what was ripe at the time, including a Cherokee Purple and some Early Girls, and the peppers were Tequila Hybrids and a Big Jim chile.
Adapted from reFresh by Ruth Tal.
griddle or skillet (or crepe pan)
ladle (or large spoon)
vegetable peeler &/or knife
food processor or bean masher
Ingredients – Dosa Pancakes
DOSA PANCAKES (Makes 8 to 12 dosas.)
1 cup (120 g) spelt flour or all-purpose, gluten free flour (I used 1 cup chapati flour.)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 cup (120 ml) almond milk (or soy, or rice, etc.)
3/4 cup (180 ml) water
1 batch Coconut Curry Sauce (see below), heated
cucumber pieces, sliced with a vegetable peeler
1. Combine the flour, salt, baking powder, and curry powder in a medium bowl. Slowly add the almond milk and water, whisking until smooth.
2. Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Spray your pan with a thin layer of cooking spray, if needed.
3. Ladle 2 tablespoons of batter into the center of your pan in a circular motion until it is a thin, round pancake. When bubbles appear on the surface and it no longer looks wet, flip it over and cook for a few seconds. Remove from heat and repeat with remaining batter. Makes 8 pancakes. (I made the pancakes a little smaller, yielding 12.)
Ingredients – Curried Garbanzo Filling
5 cloves garlic
1 onion, peeled and finely diced
1 carrot, peeled and finely diced
1 green pepper, finely diced (I used Tequila Hybrid.)
2 medium hot banana chilies, minced (I used a Big Jim chile.)
2 tablespoons cumin, ground
1 tablespoons oregano
1 tablespoons coarse sea salt
1 tablespoons turmeric
4 cups (960 g) cooked or canned garbanzo beans
1/2 cup (125 g) tomato paste (I used an entire 6 ounce/170 g can.)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (optional, my addition)
1. Heat a large saucepan over medium to low heat. Spritz on a little cooking spray, then add the garlic, veggies, and spices, cooking until soft, stirring occasionally.
2. Mash the garbanzo beans by hand or in a food processor. Add the garbanzos and tomato paste to the saucepan, stirring until heated through.
Ingredients – Coconut Curry Sauce
1 medium onion, peeled and chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon cumin, ground
3/4 teaspoon sea salt (coarse)
3 tablespoons (30 g) curry powder
3 tablespoons (30 g) spelt flour or all-purpose gluten-free flour
3 cups (720 ml) vegetable broth
2 cups (480 ml) coconut milk
3 large tomatoes, diced
1. Heat a saucepan over medium heat. Spritz on a little cooking spray, then add the onion and garlic. Cook for 5 minutes or until soft.
2. Add the cumin, seal salt, and curry powder, cooking for 1 minutes more. Add the flour and cook for 1 additional minute.
3. Gradually whisk in the vegetable broth to prevent lumps. Once the flour has been incorporated, add the coconut milk and tomatoes, stirring occasionally.
4. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 30 minutes.
Previous Daring Challenges
You can see all of my previous Daring Challenges in the the Daring Challenges tag list.