What do you do when you crave something spicy yet nothing unhealthy? Because the last few weeks were only about cookies, cakes and calorie rich food!
You quickly rustle up some masala uttapams😋
For the uninitiated, uttapams are thick savoury pancakes made of either rice and lentils or sooji/ semolina, topped with chopped veggies and traditionally served as a breakfast meal in southern India.
Instant uttapams are undoubtedly one of the easiest things to make and are very flavourful and delicious with some homemade peanut chutney. As the name suggests- instant uttapams don’t need to be fermented for a long time, making them the perfect option for a quick yet scrumptious weeknight dinner when you don’t want to toil in the kitchen after a long day. Phew!
I made some for dinner yesterday and also whipped up two lip smacking chutneys that go well with these uttapams. I also have a bonus spicy potatoes (dry) recipe for you, which you can use either as a filling for masala dosas, grilled sandwiches or as a side with these savoury pancakes. Go ahead and enjoy 😉
And yes! before I forget, here’s wishing all of you a wonderful 2021. May god bless you all with good health & happiness 🙂
For the uttapams (4 medium sized):
1 cup rava/ sooji/ semolina
1/2 cup yogurt
1 cup (approx) water
1/2 tsp baking soda
Salt to taste
Finely chopped coriander, green chilies, tomatoes and onions for topping
Red chili powder/ paprika for topping
For spicy potatoes
6-7 medium potatoes boiled and chopped into 4 pieces
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
A large pinch of asafetida (Heeng)
2 dry red chilies
1 tsp black mustard seeds
10-12 curry leaves
1/2 tsp grated ginger
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1/2 tsp red chili powder (I always use Kashmiri red chili powder as it’s very mild but rich in colour)
2 tbsp oil (any white oil)
Salt to taste
For peanut chutney
3/4 cup peanuts
1/2 cup desiccated coconut
3 dried red chilies
1 fat clove of garlic
1 small piece of tamarind
10-12 curry leaves
A pinch of asafetida (heeng)
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1 tbsp white oil
1 tsp black/ urad lentil seeds (I used ‘matar’/ yellow split pea lentil)
Salt to taste
For spicy tomato chutney
1 large dried red chili
2 medium tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
2 inch ginger, roughly sliced
Heat a frying pan with a tbsp of oil and throw in the peanuts. Roast for a while until you get the lovely aroma. Now add 1 dried red chili and desiccated coconut and keep stir frying on medium flame for 3-4 minutes or until the coconut bits are lightly browned.
Add the garlic clove and mix everything for another 30 seconds to a minute. Transfer the mixture in a blending jar and keep it aside to let it cool down a bit. Now throw in the tamarind piece, little water, salt to taste and blend to a smooth paste.
For tempering, heat some oil in a small tempering pan/ tadka pan. When hot, add a pinch of asafetida and mustard seeds. When the seeds start spluttering, add the curry leaves, 2 dried red chilies and the lentil seeds. After 20-30 seconds, gently (carefully) pour the flavoured oil on the peanut paste. Mix well and serve.
Spicy tomato chutney
Heat a frying pan with oil and throw in all the ingredients listed under ‘tomato chutney’ and stir fry for 4-5 minutes. Now let it cool for a while and then transfer to a blender to be blitzed to a smooth paste. Voila! It’s that simple.
You can use both the chutneys in multiple ways- pakodas, fritters, chips, and fries.
Spicy dry potatoes
Heat the same frying pan with oil and temper it with asafetida, mustard seeds and dried red chilies. When the seeds start spluttering like before, add in the curry leaves, grated ginger and onion slices. Mix everything well and now throw in the boiled potatoes, red chili powder and turmeric powder. Stir fry for 3-4 minutes and then sprinkle some water and cover and cook on medium heat for another 2-3 minutes. It’s ready to be served!
In a bowl add the sooji/ semolina, yogurt, water, salt and baking soda. Combine everything well to form a batter & leave aside for 5 mins. Now heat a tava/ flat pan on high until smoking hot and add a tsp of oil. Turn the flame on medium now and pour a big ladle of the batter into the center of the tava and spread well using the back of the round-ish ladle.
Add some finely chopped onions, tomatoes, chilies & coriander on top & sprinkle red chilli powder/ paprika. After a minute or so, flip over the uttapam and cook on the other side until golden brownish.
You can even grate some paneer or cheese on top. Serve hot with the chutneys or even ketchup/ sauce if you wish!