I haven’t had authentic uttapam but when I was researching this recipe, they are the closest thing I could find to describe the final outcome. The original recipe was labeled “chana dosa” but dosa are thin, crispy crepes made from a rice and urad dal. These are not like that at all. They are more like vegetable filled pancakes or fritters made with chickpea flour.
This recipe is fast, healthy and can be varied in so many ways. Stick with the base of 1 cup chickpea flour + 3/4 cup water + 1 cup grated or minced veggies and you can experiment from there. I used beets in the version I made but you can put just about anything in them. Here are some ideas:
- Finely grated beets + 1 tbsp minced mint + 1 tsp garam masala + 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
- Finely grated zucchini + minced basil + lemon zest + chile pepper
- Finely grated arrots + cilantro + cumin + orange zest
- Finely grated kohlrabi + dill + mustard seeds
- Cooked and minced Swiss chard + saffron + orange zest
- Cooked and minced kale + garlic + thyme + red pepper flakes
I would also recommend serving them with a sauce of your choice. It could be yogurt, sour cream, a tahini sauce or good old fashioned ketchup.
Chana Uttapam (adapted from The Everyday Ayurveda Cookbook)
makes about 20 small patties
Recipe note: some vegetables can be finely grated and used raw (beets, summer squash, sweet potatoes) but others I would recommend cooking first (eggplant, onions, bell peppers all come to mind).
- 1/2 teaspoon table salt
- 1 cup chickpea flour
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 cup grated and/or cooked vegetables
- Vegetable oil for frying
- Whisk the salt and flour together in a bowl. Slowly add the water, whisking constantly. Fold in the vegetables and any herbs and spices desired.
- Heat a tablespoon or two of oil over medium heat in a 12″ non-stick skillet until shimmering. Drop small spoonfuls of batter in the oil, smoothing out the surface, making sure not to crowd the pan (I used about a tablespoon of batter for each one). Cook until lightly brown, about 4-5 minutes, then flip and cook on the other side for an additional 4-5 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate and repeat with remaining oil and batter. Serve immediately.