Mysore masala dosa is a popular South Indian dish made from a fermented batter of rice and lentils. It is characterized by its crispy exterior and its soft, fluffy interior. The dosa is typically filled with a spicy potato mixture and served with sambar and coconut chutney.
What is Mysore Masala dosa?
Mysore masala dosa (pronounced 'dosey' or 'dosai') is the most popular dish originating from the Mysuru region in Karnataka and is quite different from the regular dosas. Mysore masala dosas are slightly thick, golden, and crispy on the outside while spongy and soft on the inside. A thick, red, spicy chutney is smeared inside the dosa and is topped with a potato filling. A dollop of butter is put on top of the potato filling before folding the dosa in half.
Making this Mysore dosa needs some planning as the dosa batter needs to be fermented overnight. You can also buy dosa batter from any Indian grocery store. Once the batter is ready, the potato filling and red chutney are to be prepared. The actual cooking time, i.e., making the filling, chutney, and the dosa itself, is less than one hour.
Why you will love this recipe
- This authentic recipe includes all tips, tricks, and troubleshooting techniques to get perfect crispy dosas.
- Mysore masala dosa is an ideal choice for a weekend brunch. Its combination of crispy dosa, spicy chutney, and savory potato filling provides a satisfying and enjoyable meal.
- The slightly thicker dosa, with its crispy exterior and soft, spongy interior, provides a delightful textural contrast.
What is dosa batter?
Dosa batter is the fermented batter used to make dosai. Raw rice and urad dal (skinned black lentils) are the main ingredients to make it. These, along with poha (flattened rice or rice flakes), fenugreek seeds (methi seeds), and chana dal (split yellow peas) are washed, soaked, and ground, which is then fermented for several hours.
Dosa batter: Use store-bought batter or homemade dosa batter. Soak and grind the dosa batter from the previous night and let it ferment.
Potatoes: Boiled and lightly mashed potatoes are used to make the filling.
Ghee and butter: Use ghee to fry the dosa. Top the potato filling with a dollop of butter.
See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.
Step 1: Soak and grind rice and lentils for dosa batter. Let it ferment overnight in a warm place. Read how to make masala dosa batter here. Dosa batter is fully fermented and ready for making dosas. Add salt to the batter and mix. Alternatively, use store-bought dosa batter.
Step 2: To make red chutney, heat oil and fry the chana dal. Add dry red chillies, onion, garlic, and salt. Fry until the raw smell of garlic goes away. Let the mixture cool down. Grind into a thick and fine paste using a little water.
Step 3: To make the potato filling, boil the potatoes in an
Step 4: Heat oil and add mustard seeds. Once they splutter, add cumin seeds, chana dal, urad dal, curry leaves, green chillies, turmeric powder, and ginger. Saute for a minute. Next, add the onions.
Step 5: Saute the onions until they are translucent.
Step 6: Add potatoes, salt, and 2 tablespoons of water. Mix well and saute for 1-2 minutes. Turn off the heat and add lemon juice and cilantro/coriander leaves to the potato curry.
Step 7: To make the dosa, pour a ladle full of dosa batter on the dosa tawa or a non-stick pan. Spread the batter in a circular motion. Cook on medium heat until brown.
Step 8: Spread red chutney and add some potato filling. Add a small dollop of butter on top.
Step 9: Fold the dosa in half and serve hot.
Lightly mash the boiled potatoes. It should not have any big chunks in it but should not be fully mashed.
Use lots of onions to make the potato filling. Red or pink onions work best; however, yellow onions can also be used.
Grind the red chutney with minimal water. We want a thick chutney that has a paste-like consistency so that it can be spread easily on the dosa. If you are unable to make fresh red chutney, use lentil chutney powder.
Make sure the batter is of the right consistency. It should be slightly thick yet pouring consistency. If the batter is too thick, add a small amount of water and mix well. It is best to portion out the batter and then add water. Adding too much water can make the dosas soggy.
Make sure the tawa is hot before pouring the batter. The tawa should be hot but, at the same time, not too hot. If the tawa is too hot, you will not be able to spread the batter, and if the tawa is cold, the dosa will turn soggy.
Clean the tawa after making each dosa. Sprinkle some water and wipe the tawa off with a cotton cloth or paper towel before pouring the batter for the next dosa. Sprinkling water also helps to cool the tawa slightly.
What to serve with Mysore masala dosa?
Ghee or butter: Drizzle some ghee over the dosa for added richness and aromatic flavor. A dollop of butter on top of the dosa or potato filling enhances the taste and adds a smooth, creamy element.
Sambar: Vegetable sambar is a flavorful lentil-based vegetable stew made with tamarind, pigeon peas, and a variety of vegetables like drumsticks, carrots, tomatoes, and onions.
Chutney powder: Chutney powder, also known as gunpowder, is a dry spice blend made from roasted lentils, red chilies, and other spices. This lentil chutney powder or this flax chutney powder are great options.
Plain dosa, also called sada dosa, is made without any filling and is usually made very thin and crispy. Masala dosa has a potato filling that is added when cooking the dosa.
The potato filling called potato palya is the masala in a typical masala dosa.
No. What sets the Mysore masala dosa apart is the spicy red chutney that is spread on the dosa while cooking it.
Yes. These dosas are spicy due to the addition of the fiery red chutney.
To make golden and crispy dosa, start by preparing a well-fermented dosa batter. Ensure the batter has a smooth consistency and allow it to ferment overnight. Heat a non-stick or cast-iron griddle on medium-high heat and sprinkle a few drops of water to check if it sizzles. Grease the griddle with a little oil or ghee, then pour a ladleful of batter onto the center, spreading it in a circular motion to create an even layer. Drizzle some oil or ghee around the edges and cook until the bottom turns golden brown and crispy.
There are a few reasons why your dosa may turn out soggy. Firstly, the batter might be too thin or lacking fermentation. Ensure that the batter has the right consistency, neither too thick nor too runny, and allow it to ferment properly. Additionally, the griddle or pan might not be adequately hot when you pour the batter, resulting in slower cooking and a soggy texture. Make sure the pan is sufficiently heated before starting to cook the dosa. Finally, adding too much oil or ghee during the cooking process can make the dosa greasy and less crispy. Use a minimal amount of oil or ghee for a crispier outcome.
This can happen if the tawa is too hot. The batter will stick to the tawa and begin to cook before you are able to spread it. Always make sure the tawa is hot enough but not too hot. See the tips above.
More dosa recipes
If you tried this Authentic Mysore Masala Dosa Recipe or any other recipe on my website, please leave a 🌟 star rating and let me know how it went in the 📝 comments below.
Mysore Masala Dosa
For the dosa:
For the red chutney:
For the potato filling:
To make red chutney:
- Heat oil in a frying pan/kadhai. Add chana dal and fry until it is golden.
- Add dry red chili, onion, and garlic. Fry for a few minutes until the raw smell of garlic goes.
- Turn off the heat and let it cool completely.
- Transfer into a mixer or blender and grind into a smooth paste using very little water.
To make potato filling:
- Boil the potatoes and lightly mash them. The potato filling should not have any big chunks in it, at the same time should not be fully mashed.
- Heat a frying pan or kadhai. Add mustard seeds and let them splutter.
- Add cumin seeds, curry leaves, green chili, turmeric powder, and ginger. Saute for one minute.
- Add onion and saute until they soften - about 3-4 minutes.
- Add potatoes, salt, and 2 tablespoon water. Mix well and simmer for 2-3 minutes.
- Turn off the heat. Add lemon/lime juice and cilantro/coriander leaves.
To make the dosas:
- Heat a tawa/griddle until it is hot. Turn the heat to medium. Lightly grease the tawa and wipe off excess oil using a paper towel. Sprinkle a few drops of water onto the tawa and let it evaporate.
- Take a ladle full of dosa batter and pour it into the center of the tawa. Using the ladle or a small bowl gently spread the batter in a circular motion. Don’t spread the batter very thin.
- Pour a teaspoon of oil or ghee onto the dosa.
- Cook on medium heat until the dosa begins to brown.
- Spread the red chutney on the dosa. Add 3-4 tablespoons of potato filling in the center (don’t turn the dosa to cook the other side)
- Add a small dollop of butter over the potato and fold the dosa in half.
- Serve with coconut chutney.