This savory lentil cake can be prepared two ways. One, the traditional way my mom makes it is in a cooker shaped like a bundt pan and there would be a container filled with sand below this cooker , which is then placed on stove. Another way people make it in the form of pancakes, which is easy and quick way of making it. Personally, I have always loved the traditional way of making this dish. Here, in US we make it in oven. you can use different veggies like bottle gourd, or zucchini, spinach, fenugreek leaves, fresh corn etc. In this recipe I am using bottle gourd..
one thick big or few small ones
Oondhwa Flour or Cornmeal (Oondhwa or handva flour is widely available in Indian grocery stores. Lot of people grind this mix at home. Basically, it is equal portion
Oil + 2 teaspoons for the batter
Green Chillies paste
1/2 to 1/4 cups
Bottle - gourd , grated you can use Zucchini also
Sugar or Jaggery
Salt to taste
Curry leaves optional if you don 't have it.
In This Recipe
To make batter - Take Oondhwa flour in a mixing bowl, add the yogurt, turmeric powder, salt, ginger and green chilli paste, sugar and 2 tsp of oil and mix well , and finally add the grated Zucchini or bottle - gourd in my case. Lot of people remove the water from bottle gourd or Zucchini , but I use the water from grating Zucchini , rather than using plain water.
Finally, mix everything nicely and add water if needed. The batter is not too thin nor watery. Let it ferment for atleast 5 to 6 hours or over night, if you have time.
When the batter has fermented, now is the time to add baking soda and mix it well.
To assemble the pancakes - Take oil in a shallow pan like the one we use for omelets, heat the oil and once the oil is hot add the mustard seeds, and the moment all the mustard seeds have cracked , add the sesame seeds, curry leaves and asafoetida. immediately turn off the stove. Or else the sesame seeds will burn. And, please be careful when you add the sesame and curry leaves , everything starts popping out.
Switch on the stove alongwith oil mixture.Take the batter and drop it on the oil tadka or oil mix in the pan and spread it like a pancake. You can either make it thin or thick big one whichever way you like it. The thicker one would have a nice brown crispy crust.
cook it at slow heat for about 10 minutes and then flip it on the other side. The thin pancakes would cook faster then the thicker one in case you decide to make thick. Cook it on the other side for another 10 minutes or so.
Remove it and serve it!
If you want to ever make these for picnics or parties then I make them in muffin pans. Sometimes, I make it in baking dish or you can make it on stove the way I have shown you above.