Uttapam recipe is a savory pancake, made with fermented rice and lentil flour. It is the thicker version of Dosa(a South Indian breakfast menu item). A traditional dish from Tamil Cuisine. Usually made with different toppings, though onion topping is the most popular among all.
Basically, oothapam is like a pizza base and the toppings can be done to everyone's choice and taste. And the choices of toppings is never-ending. Right from cabbage, carrot, coriander, chicken, meat, kheema etc. Uttapam recipe adopted to different variation and prepared in different ways all over South India.
And this is the simplest everyday recipe which we usually make at home. I make this for either breakfast or in the dinner time. This is considered to be a simple dish for the dinner and a rich dish for the breakfast.
The variations of Uttapam recipe called with its topping's name like onion, tomato, paneer, cauliflower. The taste and flavor vary according to the other ingredients added as the topping. But the basic batter would be the same for all the types.
The same uttapam batter can also be used to make Dosa. I usually make the leftover dosa batter as the basic ingredient for preparing them.
It can also be prepared with raw onion. If you wish to go for raw ingredients, then add chopped onion, green chilies, coriander leaves and curry leaves to the dosa batter. Spread this mixture in hot Tawa. Flip it to get cooked on both the sides. Serve hot.
The serrano pepper/green chilies bring out a beautiful flavor to this recipe and adjust green chili as per your taste. Deseed them, to serve for kiddos. Normally I cut green chilies into visible big chunks so that it can be removed when noticed.
The batter for Uttapam?
The uttappam batter can be,
- Homemade batter
- Store bought wet batter
- Store bought dry mix
The homemade batter
Usually, I grind my own batter. Nowadays the batter is available in most Indian stores in the United States. You may also get the dry mix Uttapam from online stores and as well as in Indian stores.
Generally, I grind idli/dosa batter for a week. For the first two days, I use it to make idli. And the following 3-4 days I use it for making dosas. And after that, it becomes slightly sour in taste. And it is this time we make uttapam. And this is perfect for this recipe.
You may check into this dosa batter recipe for a detailed instructions. To put it in short, soak rice 1 cup and urad dal(skinless black gram) 1/4 cup for 6 hours. Then grind it to a smooth batter by adding water and salt. And set aside for about 8 hours to get fermented.
Though the process looks a tedious one in the first glance, but actually a simple once you get accustomed.
Indian stores does carries wet dosa batter in the refrigerate isle. The idli batter also works fine for making dosa. You just need to dilute it to the pouring consistency.
Ready-made dry mix
It is available as an uttapam mix, in the powder form. Make the batter by adding water according to the package's instructions. Online stores and the local Indian stores are the right places to get.
There are tones of variations are made like, onion, tomato, cauliflower, cucumber, cheese, masala, paneer, mushroom etc.
It should be a pleasure testing each topping. And each topping would make it entirely new dish. I love trying them all one by one. And I'm sure this is a never-ending adventure in the kitchen.
When to serve uttapam?
This is traditionaly a breakfast dish. However, it can be served in the evenings or in the dinner time. Nowadays, there is no time for everyone to have an elaborate breakfast. So Uttapam Recipe has transformed into a dinner dish nowadays in many households. Even my home is also following the same choice.
We started making uttapam in the dinner time or as the brunch on the weekends. This gives a full feeling, we like to have it in the dinner rather than the breakfast time. I keep making a different topping for each uthapam I make. This way I keep my family engaged and entertained while eating. This is a pleasure for the both.
- For making uthappam, we need batter in thick consistency. The batter should be like idli batter consistency.
- Do not dilute the batter, then the toppings would not stay in its place. It will be hard to serve and hard to eat.
- It tastes good if cooked in medium flame. The moderate flame makes its edge crispier and well-cooked center.
- Another important factor is the tawa by itself. Not all the Tawas are safe for making this.
- I always have a separate pan for making this recipe. This is easier to take even paper-thin dosas.
- For the beginners, it is always safer to use a nonstick pan. Which keeps you away from worrying about the dosas stick to the pan. Otherwise, If you use your regular roti making pan for dosa, you may have a worst nightmare dosa experience.
- The toppings can be of any ingredients, can be finely chopped raw vegetables, or can also be cooked vegetables and meat.
- You may use, grated carrot, grated cabbage, grated paneer as the topping.
- You may also use leftover Tandoori chicken, paneer, or kheema.
- The side dish for this uttapam would be chutney and sambar.
I use to make them when my idli / dosa batter becomes little sour in taste. Spices and onion fried in oil take out the sourness of it. It goes very well with coconut chutney, chutney powder, sambar, onion chutney.
How to make uttapam
Pour a ladle of uttapam batter onto a heated large pan. Gently spread like a circle.
Sprinkle, serrano peppers/ green chilies, chopped green pepper, and coriander leave one after the other.
Drizzle a teaspoon of cooking oil.
Cover it with a lid and cook roughly for 3 minutes or until cooked completely.
Open the lid, Sprinkle a teaspoon of chutney powder. This makes this dish spicy.
Then lift it gently.
Serve uttapam hot.
Side dishes for Uttappam
The best side dish for this recipe would be the coconut chutney and non spicy sambar. Chutney powder, red, mint, coriander chutneies are also the important side dish options.
And if it is topped huge with the vegetables or meat, then the side dish may not require. However, you may serve with the simple coconut chutney.
My personal picks are,
- 1/2 cup onion finely chopped
- 1 tbsp green chili /serrano pepper-minced
- 1/4 cup green bell pepper finely chopped
- 1/2 cup coriander Leaves finely chopped
For mixing the topping
- In a mixing bowl, add minced green chili, finely chopped onion, green bell pepper, and coriander leaves.
- Gently mix and set aside.
- In medium flame, heat a large pan.
- Grease the pan's surface with a drop of oil.
- Pour a 1/3 cups of idli-dosa batter.
- Gently spread in a circular motion to form thicker dosa about 6mm of thickness.
- Sprinkle the onion mixture.
- Drizzle a teaspoon of oil around the edges of uttapam.
- Cover it with a lid.
- Cook for about 2-3 minutes or until it is cooked completely.
- Sprinkle chutney powder(if needed)
- Fold and transfer to a serving plate.
- Serve hot with chutney and sambar.