“Maa. why the serious look?” asks my little one, sensitive, concerned and caring. “Dear, thinking of something funny to write.” I clarify, my position. She laughs out loud. Truly being funny, is serious business. “No Joking matter” I say.

Also contemplating on the Question – What to make? Has to be something new, interesting, different (as S wishes) | hearty (as Pa wishes) | tasty (as Twishes) and healthy (as Maa wishes). Answer –  is this delightful, all time snack from the famous Gujarati cuisine, Dhokla, light and fluffy, savoury steamed cake, made with Gram flour.

Dhokla – the spongy delight!

Prep time : 25 mins ; Cooking time : 25 mins ; Serves : 4

Ingredients for the batter :

  • Gram Flour | Besan – 2 cups
  • Green Chilies – 3 – 4
  • Ginger – 1 inch
  • Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Butter milk – 1/2 cup
  • Water – 1 1/2 cups or as required
  • Lemon – 1
  • Unrefined cooking oil -1 tsp
  • Eno Fruit Salt – 1 1/2 tsp
  • Rock Salt powder – as per taste

Ingredients for tempering :

  • Mustard oil | Sesame oil | any other unrefined oil – 1-2 tsp
  • Mustard Seed – 1 tsp
  • Sesame seeds – 1 tsp
  • Green chilies – 2 – 3
  • Brown Sugar – 1 tsp

Ingredients for garnishing :

  • Coriander leaves – 3 sprigs
  • Grated Coconut – 1 tbsp
Dhokla – Steamed Seasoned Savoury cake


1. Grind green chilies and ginger in a blender. Finely chop coriander leaves and grate coconut for garnishing. Grease the vessel in which the batter is to be steamed with 1/2 tsp oil.

2. Sift the gram flour, add turmeric powder, buttermilk, blended green chilly and ginger mixture, lemon juice, oil, salt and water. Mix well, till no lumps are formed and the batter is smooth and of dropping consistency. Keep aside for 20 mins.

3. In the meanwhile, heat water in a pressure cooker or a wide mouth vessel and bring water to boil.

4. Fold in the Eno fruit salt gently into the gram flour batter, so that air bubbles formed remain. Now pour the gram flour batter into the greased vessel and immediately place the batter filled vessel, inside the cooker. Steam cook the batter in a pressure cooker, without the weight or in a wide mouthed vessel with a lid on. Watch out for cooked batter aroma, to help you decide when to switch off  heat. It takes about 15 – 20 mins

5. Upturn the steamed cake onto a plate and cut it into about 1 1/2  to 2 inches square pieces.

6. Heat the oil for tempering, add mustard seeds, after they splutter, add sesame seeds, green chilies cut lengthwise, half cup water, sugar,  and salt. Pour over the sliced, cut, steamed cake and garnish with finely chopped coriander and grated coconut.

Vegan Version :  Replace buttermilk with water and follow the above recipe. This version is a tad bit denser but nonetheless, tasty.

Cook’s note : Make sure to add Eno fruit salt , just before steaming, for soft and spongy Dhoklas, as the end result.

Best wishes and do try this famous Gujarati snack, soft and spongy delicious delight along with green chutney!


2 thoughts on “¤ DHOKLA ¤”

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