I smiled so hard reading your letter about Bubbe’s blintzes. It’s just funny to me that you would write about blintzes right now.
I’m writing to you from Bangalore where I’m celebrating a friend’s wedding and indulging in south Indian food. Every morning I eat south India’s famed breakfast: dosa dipped in sambar (lentil soup) and coconut chutney. I can’t get enough! Yesterday I ate dosa for lunch and dinner, too (embarrassed). I eat dosai (plural for dosa) exactly like I used to eat Bubbe’s blintzes… over and over and over again without getting bored or too full for just one more.
From blinis to pancakes and crepes to tortillas, I’ve come to know that every culture has its own prized “blintz.” Here in south India, it’s dosa.
Dosa is made from a combination of rice and lentil flour, which is fermented into a sweet smelling batter. Its shell can be filled with all sorts of goodness from potatoes to spinach to egg. The most common filled dosa is masala dosa, in which the crispy shell is stuffed with spicy potatoes and onions.
But I like my dosai plain, just like you enjoyed Bubbe’s blintz shells without the cheesy filling. There’s something perfect about how the crispness of the oily edges turns into gooey, fermented dough towards the middle. Omg!
The best part is that it’s healthy. Traditionally, dosa is dunked into those sides of coconut chutney and sambar that I love for added protein, hardy fiber, healthy fats and a kick of spice.
Are you hosting any vegans or guests with gluten intolerance this Shavuot? Dosai are the perfect vegan and/or gluten-free substitute for blintzes. In fact, serving dosa is probably the only way to curb blintz hunger for folks who can’t eat them…and your other guests will love dosai, too!
My friends here joke that I have two stomachs like a cow, and that one is only for dosa. I try to explain the special training I received as child at Bubbe’s kitchen table, where I worked on tall stacks of buttery blintzes that magically never grew shorter. Blintz after blintz after blintz. Just like dosai, it’s easy to lose count! No one understands, but I do indeed blame Bubbe for my dosa addiction.