What exactly is fermented khaman dhokla? Well, a dhokla is an Indian steamed bread made from a fermented batter. It can be made from all sorts of different grains: rice, barley, lentils, quinoa, chickpeas. They are fermented with yogurt, then the batter is steamed and topped with spices.
Dhokla has a cake-like structure and is traditionally eaten as a breakfast or snack item. It also works as a mild and filling bread for a spicy Indian meal.
I have made dhokla with soaked lentils and rice, which are then ground up (like in a dosa or idli recipe). This khaman dhokla recipe is made with chickpea flour. It avoids the grinding required with other dholka recipes, so it is quicker to make.
- Pour batter into a greased 6″ cake pan or a greased pudding bowl that is small enough to nest inside a large pot.
- Put 2″ of water into the bottom of the pot.
- Place a small jar on the bottom of the pot that is tall enough to sit just above the water level. Then place your pudding bowl on top.
- Steam with the pot lid on, occasionally checking the water levels. To keep the water from dripping off the top of the pot onto the pudding, either cover the pudding with tin foil, or wrap the pot lid in a tea towel. See below for photos of my set up.
Fermented Khaman Dhokla
Khaman dhokla is an Indian steamed bread made from a fermented batter. It is traditionally eaten for breakfast, but it is also nice served along side of a spicy curry.
- Prep Time: 5 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Total Time: 20 minutes
- Yield: Serves 6-8 1x
- Category: Side Dish
- Method: Steamed
- Cuisine: Indian
- 1 cup chickpea flour
- 1 tbsp semolina (optional)
- 1/2 cup yogurt
- 1/4 cup filtered water (chlorine free)
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp oil
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 tbsp shredded coconut
- 2 tsp sesame seeds
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 diced chili and 5 curry leaves (optional)
- 2 tbsp cilantro
- Mix the chickpea flour, yogurt and water in a glass container and allow to ferment for 8-12 hours.
- When ready to make the dhokla, mix in the baking soda and oil.
- Pour the batter into a 6″ cake pan, cover and steam for 10-15 min (until a knife comes out clean). See section above for an easy homemade steamer.
- Heat the oil and fry the spices and coconut until they are fragrant and just starting to brown.
- Pour the toasted spices over the freshly steamed dhokla. Top with cilantro and serve warm.
- Though yogurt is traditional in this recipe, milk kefir or buttermilk will also work as well.
- Instead of chickpea flour, you could use rice flour, lentil flour, garfava flour, etc. Though changing the flour would officially change the type of dhokla.
- I like serving dhokla with chutney, yogurt or lemon pickles. It’s a nice simple base for all sorts of delicious Indian flavours.
Keywords: gluten free, egg-free, sugar free, flour free, grain free, bread, cake, savoury, chickpea, rice, lentil, breakfast, dinner