The cupboards are never really bare….
Buying a car in this last chunk of our funding means we are now on a budget until July. This has naturally meant some curb in my usual food shopping extravagances and led Ben to claim that “there was no food in the house” for dinner one night this week. This was a little bit of a red rag to me and I was sure I could create something delicious for us with just the bare store cupboard essentials we always keep in the house. Dosai (or dosa or tosai depending on where you are in the world) are a revelation, reminding me of good times sitting outside the Batu caves in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and a firm favourite of mine at Eastern Bazaar in Cape Town. I recently found a store cupboard instant mix for these crispy wrap, so here’s what I made:
Dosai with sag aloo, tomato and onion salad and lime pickle.
5 large potatoes, chopped in to 5cm chunks
4 cloves of garlic, chopped finely
A large chunk of root ginger (5cm), grated/finely chopped
2 onions, chopped finely
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp garam masala
2 green chillies, chopped finely
A little vegetable oil
Half a box of Gits Dosai mix, made up according to instructions – this is made with different types of rice flour and lentil flour, so I’m not sure on a do-it-yourself recipe. But this would go equally wonderfully with home made roti.
2 Tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 onion, finely sliced.
Lime pickle to serve (I’ll try and refine my recipe for this, the last one turned out too salty, nice but I’m not willing to set it loose here yet!).
Add the potatoes to salted, boiling water and cook until they are just less than solid. Soften the onions, ginger, chillies and garlic in the butter, then add the drained potatoes. Grind the cumin and coriander seeds with the turmeric in a pestle and mortar and add to the pan. Add more butter/a little vegetable oil if the pan becomes too dry. Cook until the potatoes are soft. Meanwhile, chop your onions and tomatoes for the onion salad – add some fresh coriander if you have. Once the potatoes are soft, add the spinach to wilt. Stir the garam masala through the potatoes and you’re finished! The dosai only take a few minutes to prepare so you can wait until the saag aloo is very nearly done. Prepare the dosai mix whilst the potatoes are softening and then cook according to the packet instructions (lightly grease a pan, add a thin layer of mix (but not too thin – think crepe) and sprinkle a little oil on top. Cook on medium heat until the edges rise up and become crispy and brown). The dosai are easiest folded in the pan, so place some of the saag aloo on top, with a little onion salad, fold and serve with lime pickle! A delicious and incredibly filling dinner.
Dietary note: The best thing about this recipe? It allows those with a gluten free diet to enjoy the bread-type dishes normally associated with delicious curries etc. Gits Dosai mix is gluten free!) And this dish is vegetarian and vegan (if you substitute the butter) friendly – this really shows that anyone can eat well and cheaply on store cupboard essentials.