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Saturday, 20 February 2010


It was not long ago(only 4 days) when I came to know about Pancake Day! 16th  of February was this year’s  Shrove Tuesday or Pancake Day. It’s called a Pancake Day or a Pancake Tuesday as everybody in the country is supposed to eat pancakes on this day. It’s the last day before the beginning of Lent, which is the period of sacrifices or abstinence for the Christians. So they are allowed to binge on the forbidden ingredients like eggs, butter, flour and milk before starting to give up things during Lent.

According to ‘'Wikipedia’’, ‘'The word shrove is the past tense of the English verb shrive, which means to obtain absolution for one's sins by way of confession and doing penance.’’

So when my friend told me all about a Pancake Day I couldn’t resist the temptation of making pancakes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. One doesn’t really need an excuse to eat pancakes, right? But if there IS an excuse, why not use it to the fullest? So my Pancake Day menu was like this :

Breakfast – Normal Pancakes with Golden Syrup
Lunch  - The same (my husband was already sick of pancakes and didn’t want anymore of it so me and my daughter binged on the batter)
Dinner – Masala Dosa with Sambar and Coconut Chutney

I try to use home made batters for my pancakes though the store bought ones make life simpler. But since it WAS Pancake Day, I didn’t want to cheat and threw myself at the job early in the morning(I know some of you might be sniggering at how I’m making it sound like a huge task…but believe me, making pancakes early in the morning with a screaming toddler…it IS a huge task)! She’s the culprit behind my infrequent blogging as well!

Classic Breakfast Pancakes -

What U need for the batter :

6oz Plain/All Purpose Flour
2 Medium Eggs
8oz of milk
3oz of water
Spray oil or little butter to grease the pan
A pinch of salt
1 tbsp of sugar(optional)

Get ur apron and get ready :

Make a mixture of milk and water and keep seperately. Mix the flour, salt and sugar(if using) in a mixing bowl. Add the eggs and whisk well. Gradually start adding the milk and water mixture, little at a time. Keep whisking till you get the desired consistency and texture(should be runny and smooth). 

Get the pan hot spray some oil or rub butter wih a spoon. Lower down the flame and add about 2 tbsp of pancake mixture. Flip and fry the other side. It’s only take a few seconds. Stack the pancakes one over another on a plate on a pot of hot water to keep them warm. Serve folded or stacked up with a topping of your choice. I normally serve it with a fruit compote or golden syrup.

For dinner I made Rava Masala Dosa with Sambar and Coconut chutney. Now I must mention here that I still remember in my early childhood days I wasn’t a big fan of Dosas. But the big attractiog for me was the hot and tasty coconut chutney that accompanied the Dosas. That tiny bowl of chutney used to be a treat, more preciously so because they won’t let us have second helping at the restaurant. Only God knows where they found those wickedly tiny bowls which measure even less than a bird-lunch-portion!

Rava Masala Dosa with Sambar and Coconut chutney – I took the recipe from Asha of Foodie’s Hope(with some changes of my own)

What U need for the Dosa :

1/2 cup fine Sooji/Rava/Semolina
1 cup White Horse Dosa batter mix
A pinch of salt
2 cups Water

Get ur apron and get ready :

Mix all the ingredients using a whisk and keep it aside for half an hour. I normally keep it overnight if I’m using normal Rice and Urad Dal batter. Heat the pan on high till it’s very hot. Lower the flame and add a ladleful of batter spreading it from outside to inside(it might be a bit difficult to spread rava batters at first but it should be alright after a few attempts J) Spray with oil on the sides and flip and cook the other side for a few seconds. Flip again, fill in with the potato bhaji and fold. Serve with Sambar and Coconut chutney.

What U need for the masala filling :

2 medium potatoes - diced
2 medium onions - sliced
1 tsp mustard seeds
½ tsp turmeric powder
Salt to taste
10-12 curry leaves
1 cup water

Get ur apron and get ready :

Heat oil in a wok or a pressure cooker. I prefer pressure cooker as it cooks the potatoes really fast, thus saving time. Add mustard seeds and curry leaves and sauté for a few seconds. Add the onions and sauté for another few minutes till the onions are transparent. Add the potatoes and fry for a few minutes. Add the salt and turmeric and cook for  further 2 minutes. Add the water and lock the lid of the cooker. Take it off the heat after a nice long whistle but keep the lid on till all the air goes out. Take off the lid and cook it on high flame for a few seconds till all the water has dried off. 

What U need for the Sambar :

1 cup mixed vegetables(your choice )
½ cup cut drumsticks
2-3 dry red chillies
8-10 curry leaves
½ tsp mustard seeds
½ tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp Sambar Masala
A pinch of asafetida
1 tbsp of tamarind paste
2 tbsp Coconut powder
½ cup chopped coriander leaves
2 tbsp sunflower/vegetable oil
Get ur apron and get ready :

Wash and cook dal with salt, turmeric and the drumsticks. Dissolve the tamarind paste and the coconut powder in ½ bowl of warm water.

Heat oil in a wok. Add the mustard seeds and let them splutter. Add the red chillies and the curry leaves. Add the vegetables and sauté for a few minutes till they are soft. Add the boiled dal with drumsticks, tamarind and coconut paste and the sambar masala. Bring it to boil. Garnish with coriander leaves.

….and now the best part….The Coconut Chutney – 

What U need :

1 cup shredded coconut – I use the frozen ones
2 green chillies
1 dry red chilli, soaked in water for a few hours
4-5 tbsp fried Chana Dal/Yellow Split beans
½ tsp grated ginger
½ tsp tamarind paste
1 tsp mustard seeds
8-10 curry leaves
1 tbsp sunflower/vegetable oil

Get ur apron and get ready :

Blend the coconut, chillies, chana dal, ginger and tamarind paste in a blender. Heat oil in a pan and add the mustard seeds. Add the curry leaves once the seeds start to splutter. Add the coconut mixture and a little water. Enjoy with crispy dosas and hot sambars.


Trivia : Pancake Day is also known as ''Mardi Gras'' which means Fat(Grease) Tuesday!

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