One of my favorite dishes that I miss since being on Keto and coming from South India is the masala dosa. In South India the dosa is a breakfast staple. I did some experimentation and have come up with a recipe that I enjoy and am sure you will too.
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The traditional masala dosa has two parts, the crunchy dosa (crepe) and the savory potato filling. The dosa is traditionally cooked with a rice and lentil batter that needs fermentation. Along with the potato filling this is a carbohydrate heavy meal. I needed a keto friendly version. If you have your own filling, the recipe for just the dosa is here.
The first step is to make the filling so that it is ready when each individual dosa is made. There are many recipes leveraging cauliflower as a mashed potato alternatives. I took inspiration from these recipes and made adjustments as the potato filling used in a traditional dosa is not as creamy.
Cauliflower is the main ingredient and this recipe uses 1/2 a head of cauliflower chopped into florets. There are two methods to cook the cauliflower florets so that it can be mashed for this keto masala dosa.
Method 1: Steam in the Microwave
I used a Pasta Boat with a steamer attachment to seperate the water from the cauliflower. Any microwave steamer will work. If you do not have a steamer device for the microwave, you can put in a 1/4 cup of water in a bowl and add the cauliflower and cover with a plate or plastic lid. Heat the cauliflower in the steamer for 10 minutes.
Pasta Boat with Steamer attachment on base
If you did use a bowl with a plate to cover, make sure to drain all the water that is left.
Method 2: Cook Cauliflower in boiling water
Bring 4-6 cups of water to a boil. Add cauliflower florets to boiling water and cook for 10 minutes until cauliflower is soft. You should be able to mash a floret with a fork. When done use a strainer to drain the water.
Transfer the cauliflower florets to a large bowl. Add the 2 oz of cream cheese, 1/4 cup sour cream and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese and start mixing with a large spoon. Once the ingredients are well incorporated, take a masher and mash the cauliflower. You do not want to over-mash as you do not want it too creamy like mashed potatoes, but more rough to have the same consistency of the traditional potato filling.
Cauliflower mashed to resemble potato filling
Add Spices and other ingredients
Take a large pot on the stove and heat on medium. Add 2 tbsp of olive oil and spread across the bottom and let it heat up. Add the mustard seeds first, then the onions, chilies, ginger, coriander leaves and curry leaves. Cook until onions start to become translucent but make sure they do not turn brown. Onions can be cut down if you really want to further lower the per serving carb count. Add the turmeric and salt. Mix until everything becomes yellow.
Finalizing the Cauliflower Filling for Keto Masala Dosa
Now add the cauliflower mash and mix together well with the other ingredients in the pot. It should turn out with the cauliflower mash turning yellow in color spread out evenly.
Set the cauliflower filling aside as it will be used in making the masala dosa.
Making the Keto Masala Dosa
I experimented and created a batter using just three ingredients and it closely resembles the look, texture and taste of a traditional dosa. The batter is simple to make and requires mixing 1 cup of coconut milk, 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese and 3/4 cup almond flour and as a bonus does not need the fermentation process of a traditional dosa.
The batter is the easy part, however cooking it on the skillet is the tricky part of this recipe. To make thinks easier you will need a non-stick skillet, silicone spatula to spread out batter and a thin spatula to flip over. The first thing to make sure is to let the non-stick skillet heat up on medium-low heat.
Methodology to Cook Dosa
For the first dosa lightly rub some olive oil (or oil of choice) on the skillet. For subsequent dosas, oil is not needed. Place 2-3 spoons of the batter on the middle of the skillet. Then use the silicone spatula to spread the batter out. Then give it some time for the bottom to cook. You can tell when it is ready to flip when the edges turn to a brown color. Before flipping over, slide the thin spatula underneath and all around the dosa to loosen from the skillet. Then it is ready to flip over to cook the other side. Then the second side should be cooked for a short 20 seconds and then flip back over. At this point add the cauliflower filling on top of dosa towards one side. Then fold it in half.
Methodology to cook the Dosa on the skillet
Add filling and fold dosa
- Bring 3 to 4 cups of water to a boil (Microwave option is also available to steam cauliflower and described below.
- Chop cauliflower into florets and wash
- Put cauliflower florets into boiling water and cook for about 5 to 7 minutes until florets are soft. Alternatively, cauliflower can be steamed in microwave using a steamer or pasta boat for 8 to 10 minutes.
- When done, put cauliflower in a strainer and drain all water (boiling method).
- Quickly transfer cauliflower to a bowl while it is still hot.
- Add cream cheese, sour cream and parmesan cheese.
- Start by mixing well to spread out the ingredients evenly.
- Use a masher to mash the cauliflower.
- Set aside mashed cauliflower
- Heat a pot on a stove with 2 tbsp olive oil
- When the oil is hot, add mustard seeds,
- Then add onions, chilies, cilantro, curry leaves and ginger.
- Cook until onions are translucent stirring intermittently (make sure it doesn't turn brown).
- Then add the turmeric and salt
- Mix well until whole mixture is yellow
- Now add the cauliflower that was set aside.
- Keep mixing to evenly distribute the mix and the whole filling is an even yellow color.
- Turn off heat and set the cauliflower filling aside.
Dosa (Crepe) Preparation
- Take the coconut milk, mozzarella cheese and almond flour and mix well into batter
- For the first dosa brush 1 tsp of oil on the skillet
- Heat on medium high and wait for the skillet to be hot
- Take 4 tbsp of the batter and spread on skillet with silicone spatula
- Make sure the first side is browned before flipping over. You should be able to slide a thin spatula underneath easily when ready.
- Cook other side for a short period so the dosa comes together
- Add about 2 to 3 spoons ( 3oz) of Cauliflower filling on one half
- Fold the Dosa in half and enjoy!
How did this keto masala dosa recipe come out for you? Let us know in the comments below.