An adai is a gluten-free south Indian dosa crepe that can be flavored with vegetables and/or herbs. Here, I flavor it with my favorite herb, cilantro.
Adai is a South Indian rice-and-lentil crepe that I love. Albeit dosa-like, it is more than just a plain dosa, because you can mix into it all kinds of health ingredients and flavor.
This time, I decided to make a cilantro-flavored Adai. I love the fresh, lemony-spicy flavor of coriander, and it really helps pack a punch into foods that start out with a bland base, like tofu-based dishes or dosas.
I tweaked my old Adai recipe, and added another ¼ cup of green split peas, because my Lalitha Manni insists that split peas (you can also use yellow ones) add more crunch to the Adai.
I have a guest, Heidi, staying over, and she absolutely loved this Adai, as did Desi, so I guess it turned out all right. I served it with some coconut chutney for a wonderful and healthy Friday night meal.
As always, I spread the Adai out very thin to make it extra-crispy, although most traditional versions of Adai tend to be thicker. It's really up to you and your tastes.
Here's the recipe. Enjoy the weekend, everyone!
More dosa recipes
- 1 cup rice (medium grain preferred, although long grain works as well)
- ¼ cup chana dal (bengal gram dal)
- ¼ cup urad dal (black gram dal)
- ¼ cup toor dal (pigeon peas)
- 2 jalapeno peppers (use less and deseed for less heat)
- 1-inch knob ginger (grated)
- 1 cup cilantro (pack the cilantro in to measure. I use the stems too because I find they add a lot of flavor)
- Salt to taste.
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- Soak the rice and the dals together for at least 2 hours. Drain, and place in a blender along with all the other ingredients except the oil.
- Add enough water to keep the blades moving and grind until you have a fine batter. It should be just a little grainy so the adai turns out crispy, but not too coarse. The batter should be spreadable but thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
- Heat a griddle, either cast-iron or non-stick.
- Using a ladle with a rounded bottom, scoop up ½ cup of the Adai batter.
- Pour the batter into the center of the hot griddle and, quickly, spread it outward in concentric circles using the bottom of the ladle. Work fast, and don't panic if it doesn't look perfect the first time. No one gets it right in the beginning.
- Pour a few drops of oil around the edges of the Adai and on top so it turns extra-crispy.
- When the bottom of the Adai looks crisp and golden, about 1-2 minutes, flip over and cook the other side for another minute.
- Serve hot with chutney and sambar.