Well this GBBO week really baffled me. It’s great to have new things featured on the programme, but I found all the challenges for Batter week rather boring! If you want to catch up on the latest episode then click HERE. Personally, I think you shouldn’t mess around too much with certain traditional recipes like Yorkshire Pudding and Churros, but this is totally my opinion and maybe I haven’t tried enough different types to know for sure.
Pancake? ShPancake! Here’s a different kind of batter recipe I’d like to share – Chilla! This is an Indian recipe which is so much easier than Dosa batter as there is no fermenting and waiting around for 24hours (or more!). Most Chilla’s I’ve eaten use Chick pea batter (Besan) and sometimes this can feel a bit heavy afterwards. So I love this recipe as it uses a mixture of Daal’s which are also high in Protein but produces are lovely light batter.
You can eat these by themselves as it’s already lightly spiced, but I love eating it with a sweet and spicy combo like Jaggery and a spicy ‘Kara Kuzhambu’…yummm!! But it’s also delish with something like an onion, tomato or coconut chutney. I’d love to know what you end up eating yours with 🙂
The fenugreek seeds and Asafoetida both help with flatulence and are great for digesting high protein lentils, but these are optional and if you leave them out they won’t affect the overall taste.
If you can’t get the Whole Urad Dal you can use split urad dal which might be easier to obtain in certain locations.
What you need:
- Masoor Daal (split red lentils) – 1 cup
- Mung Dal (split yellow gram lentils – not the green!) – 1 cup
- Whole Urad Dal (black gram lentils without skin)- 1 cup
- Fenugreek seeds – 1 tsp (optional)
- Coriander leaves – 1 cup – chopped finely
- A small onion – chopped finely
- Cumin seeds – 2 tsp
- Curry leaves – a spring – finely chopped (these can be difficult to find in certain countries so you can leave these out if you can’t get them)
- Green chillies – 2 – chopped finely (optional)
- Asafoetida – a pinch (optional)
- Salt, to taste (I add about 1.5 tsp)
How to make it:
1. Soak all the Daal in 5 cups of water for at least 3 hours (it can be more but not any less)
2. Grind the Daal in a food processor/mixie until it becomes a smooth batter without big lumps of Daal in it. You can add some of the water if you need to make it into a smoother consistency but don’t add all of it straight away.
3. Add all the other ingredients and mix well. Check the seasoning at this point and add more salt or spice if needed.
4. Heat a cast iron skillet ,or a non-stick frying pan, with a teaspoon of a flavourless oil like vegetable oil.
5. Pour on the batter evenly onto the pan with a ladle and spread the batter into a circular disc, resembling a pancake (Chilla) . Do note that these don’t have to be as thin as a European style pancake and not as thick as the North American style ones.
6. After a few minutes you will see some of the Chilla turning brown and at this point you can loosen the sides with a spatula and then turn it over to cook on the other side.
You can definitely make it a more tasty Chilla if you add Ghee/Butter at step 6 or 7 (or Margarine if you want to keep it vegan)
7. After about 3 minutes or until the other side is cooked through you can take the Chilla off the pan and serve! Usually the Chilla is served as a soft pancake but if you like it crispier you can leave it on the pan for longer.
Serve with a chutney or side dish of your choice! 🙂