A vegetarian diet – back home, I never gave it a second thought. It was a way of life rather than a way to eat. But on this side of the pond, I always get this question – what do you do for protein? Do you eat soy? No, I never ate soy before touching these shores. And neither did any of my ancestors, I think. Lentils, beans – there are so many varieties that by mixing it up, I get all the protein I need and perhaps, then some.
As I’ve increasingly gotten conscious of what I put in my mouth, because as yet, my little M relies on me for all or most of her nutrition needs, I have decided to start experimenting with new ways of eating old ingredients.
Yesterday, it was dosa (a kind of vegetarian pancake, traditionally made from black gram or urad dal) with black-eyed peas. Until then, I had only ever eaten them prepared like chickpeas in chole or sundal. Perhaps more on those later.
Black-eyed peas 1 cup (or lobiya in Hindi, karamani in Tamil, alasandalu or bobbarlu in Telugu)
Cracked wheat 1 cup
Parboiled rice 1 cup
Green chillies 4
Ginger 1 inch long
Asafoetida a pinch
Salt to taste
Yogurt to smoothen batter (optional; water can be used in its place)
Cooking oil (I used sesame oil)
1. Wash and soak black-eyed peas and cracked wheat+parboiled rice separately for 4-6 hours.
2. Drain water and grind with remaining ingredients to a coarse consistency.
3. Heat flat pan or tawa and when hot, spread batter on the pan, and drop a few drops of oil around and above it.
4. Cook uncovered until brown. Flip with flat ladle and cook until it is cooked through.
5. Enjoy with molaga podi (I’ll post a recipe later) or any chutney.