Enjoy a slice of Gujarat

Talking about Sunday snacks, why don’t we have a slice of west India this week? Dhokla is a popular snack not only in the western part of the country but in other cities too. It is delicious, light and healthy. One may find the preparation process long but Toshali Mandal will help you make the perfect dhokla.

Khaman Dhokla

(1 cup is equivalent to 250 ml)

For khaman dhokla batter
1.5 cups of gram flour (besan); 1 tablespoon rava/suji (or semolina), optional; 3 teaspoons of ginger-green chilli paste done in a mortar-pestle; 2 to 3 pinches of turmeric powder; 1-2 pinch asafoetida (hing);
2 teaspoons of Eno or fruit salt; ½ to ¾ teaspoon of baking soda; 1 teaspoon of salt or as required;
1 teaspoon of lime juice; 1 cup of water or add as
required. The amount of water required depends on the quality of the gram flour. So add as much to make a thick yet flowing batter.

For tempering khaman
2 tablespoons of oil; ⅓ cup water; 1 teaspoon of
mustard seeds; 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds (optional);
2 teaspoons of white sesame seeds; 1 sprig curry leaves (about 8 to 10 leaves); 1 green chilli, chopped (optional); 1 teaspoon of lime juice; 2 teaspoon of sugar.
For garnish
2 tablespoons of chopped coriander leaves (cilantro leaves); 2 tablespoons of grated coconut


For the batter, grease a steamer pan with 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of oil. Take 1.5 cups of gram flour in a mixing bowl or pan. Add 2 to 3 pinches of turmeric powder, a generous pinch of asafoetida, lime juice, the ginger-green chilli paste and salt. Add a cup of water or as required. Stir and then add one tablespoon of semolina. Stir to a smooth thick batter without any lumps. If the batter becomes thin, then add 1 to 2 tablespoon more semolina or besan.
Bring to boil 2-3 cups of water in a steamer pan or electric cooker or pressure cooker. The amount of water to be added depends on the size of the steamer or pressure cooker.
Add two teaspoons of Eno or fruit salt to the batter. Stir briskly and quickly. The fruit salt should mix evenly with the batter or the texture of the dhokla will be uneven. The batter will froth and become bubbly so you have to be quick. Pour the batter in the greased pan. The dhokla batter is ready to be steamed.
Place the pan in the steamer or electric rice cooker or pressure cooker. The water should already be boiling or hot when you place the pan with the dhokla batter. When using pressure cooker, remove the vent weight/whistle from the lid and cover the cooker tightly with its lid. Steam for 15-20 minutes in an electric cooker. If using a pan or pressure cooker, steam for 12-15 minutes on a medium to high flame. Here the khaman is ready after 17 minutes.
To check whether it is ready, insert a toothpick and if it comes out clean, the dhokla is done. If the toothpick has the batter on it, then you need to steam for some more time. When the khaman is warm, gently slide along the edges with a butter knife. Keep a plate or tray on top of the pan. Invert the pan. If greased well, the khaman will easily get inverted on the plate. Slice and keep aside.

Microwave method
Grease a microwave safe bowl or pan with oil. Cover and microwave the batter for two minutes on high. Check by inserting a toothpick in the dhokla. If not done, then microwave again on high for 30 seconds to a minute. Keep checking. When done, remove the dhokla from the pan once warm or cooled.

Tempering for khaman dhokla
In a small pan, heat 2 tablespoons of oil. Add one teaspoon of mustard seeds and allow them to crackle. When the mustard seeds are crackling, add cumin seeds (optional), 8 to 10 curry leaves and chopped green chilli (optional). Stir and then add sesame seeds. Fry till the sesame seeds change colour. Don’t make them brown. Add 1/3 cup of water. Be careful while adding water as the mixture sizzles. Add sugar. Stir and allow the tempering mixture to come to a boil. Then pour this tempering mixture evenly on the khaman dhokla. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and grated coconut.
Serve khaman dhokla hot or you can store them in an air-tight box and then serve later. If you are serving it later, then don’t add coconut. You can also refrigerate it and while serving khaman, just sprinkle some water and heat them in a microwave for a few seconds.

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