Chef Dhiraj ready to serve utappam.

After our dosa-making lesson with chef Dhiraj at Grande Bay Resort in Mamallapuram, he looked at all the batter his talented team had produced and with a sparkle in his eye, started to flex his creative chef brain. Pretty soon we were flipping these Utappams and fortunately for Pauli-Ann and I, this thicker version of a dosa, was much easier to contend with. Note the dab of ghee placed deliciously to the centre for added flavour. Eat them with sambhar at breakfast, as a snack or even as an accompaniment with dinner.

Utappam – pancakes topped with vegetables Recipe



½ kilogram of short grain parboiled rice
15 grams chana dal
125 grams urad dal (whole but skinned)
5 grams fenugreek seeds
Salt to taste
Sunflower as needed to grease the griddle
1 – 2 cups sliced shallots
2 green chilies, chopped in rings
Ghee as needed


  1. Soak the rice and chana dal together with enough water to cover for about 4 hours.
  2. Soak the urad dal and fenugreek seeds with enough water to cover in a different bowl for the same time.
  3. Drain and then process the rice and chana dal with a little water until they form a fine paste (there should be no grit if you pick up a bit of the batter and feel it between your fingers).
  4. Drain and process the urad dal and fenugreek until very fine (it will be thicker).
  5. Mix the two batches together and add salt to taste.
  6. Cover with a cloth and leave to ferment in a warm place (25-35℃) for a few hours in South India (or overnight in colder climates like Canada).
  7. Heat a griddle or tava and add oil, coating the circumference of the surface.
  8. Take a ladle full of batter, pour it in the centre and let it spread in as a thick pancake.
  9. Sprinkle the top with the slices onions and chilies.
  10. Drizzle a little ghee or oil around the edges to help it crisp up.
  11. Cook until the surface is covered with bubbles, flip and cook the other side until brown. Finish with a dab of ghee to the centre if desired.
  12. Serve with sambar of chutney.

Thanks for trying this recipe.

We'd love to hear from you.