Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Cooking with Microwave: Khatta Dhokla or Safed Dhokla

I haven’t been blogging lately, because I haven’t been cooking anything!!. We are remodeling our kitchen. We are replacing the current wooden floor with tiles, changing cabinets, adding back splash etc etc, so no more cooking for one more month.

There are many things I want to make at home and eat, but I guess all I can do is wait for the kitchen work to be finished. I have been craving all fermented things I can make because the weather here is hot, which is perfect for fermenting food overnight. I want to make Khatta dhokla (safed dhokla), handvo, idly, dosa etc, which all require the batter to be fermented overnight.

Since we don’t use microwave to cook anything in our house, it didn’t occur to me until this morning that I can make dhokla, Poha Chivda, Sev Mamara (Puffed rice with spicy fried noodles made from gram flour) etc.

The first dish I will try is Khatta dhokla. I am going to soak the rice/daals tonight. Grind it tomorrow morning, and let it ferment for the whole day tomorrow (and also the whole night if needed), so that I can have dhoklas the day after.

This will be the first time I will be making dhoklas in microwave, so I am a little bit nervous. I am not sure if they will come out as moist and fluffy was when I make them by steaming them.

I will update the post once I make them. Wish me good luck!!:)

An update

Ok, so first, a little clarification. Usually, when I make dhoklas, I combine coarse rice flour (cream of rice) with coarse urad dal flour, add curd and water to it, and let it ferment.

Since, the kitchen is being remodeled, and everything has been packed away in cartons, I bought rice and urad dal from the store, soaked them overnight, ground them the next day, and added water and curd to let it ferment.

The rice to daal proportion is 2:1. i.e. for every two cups rice, combine 1 cup daal.

The yogurt used for making the batter should be sour. I take the required amount the yogurt out of the fridge in the morning before I leave for my work. In the evening, when I combine the rice and daal flour/whole rice and daal to grind, I add the sour yogurt to it.

1 Cup Rice, or Coarse Rice Flour (Cream of Rice)
½ cup Urad Daal, or Coarse Urad Daal Flour
2 Tablespoons Sour Yogurt (Taken out of the fridge for atleast 6 hours)
Salt to taste
½ Teaspoon Ginger Chili Paste
½ Teaspoon Eno Fruit Salt
A Pinch Red Chili Powder, or Black Pepper Powder, Optional

If you are using cream of rice and coarse urad daal flour, combine 1 cup rice and ½ cup urad daal flour in a container. Mix well. Add 2 tablespoon of sour yogurt and ½ cup water to this mixture. Mix with hands to make sure that no lumps form. Depending on the brand of the cream of rice you use, you might require more or less water. The consistency of the batter should be thick, but pourable. Cover and let it ferment. In the mild Seattle weather, it takes 24 hours to ferment.

Alternatively, if you are using whole rice and daal, take 1 cup rice and ½ cup urad daal. Wash it clean, and soak overnight with enough water. The next day, grind the rice and daal together to a slightly coarse paste. Use as little water as you can while grinding, to get a coarse paste. Add 2 tablespoons of sour yogurt and ½ cup water to this paste. Again, depending on the type of the rice you use, the quantity of water required might change. The paste should be thick but pourable. It took 24 hours to ferment.

For making the dhoklas in microwave, take a flat microwave safe container, preferably glass. I used an 8in x 8in Pyrex glass baking pan. Grease the pan and set aside.

Add the chili ginger paste, and salt to the batter and stir well. Mix 1/4th teaspoon Eno fruit salt and 2 tablespoon water in a container. Add two big ladles full of the batter to the Eno mixture and stir. Immediately pour the batter in the glass container. Make sure you leave some room in the glass container for the dhoklas to rise. Sprinkle some red chili powder or black pepper powder on the batter. Microwave for 10 minutes, then check for doneness by inserting a knife. If the knife comes out clean the dhoklas are done. Close the microwave door and let it sit for 2 minutes.

Take out, cut into desired size pieces and serve with green chutney.

Alternatively if you want to steam the dhokla, follow the same steps. Instead of microwaving the batter pour it into a steaming tray and steam for 10-15 minutes. Let it cool, cut into desired size pieces and serve hot with green chutney.

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