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Khatta Dhokla

Dhokla's are steam cooked snacks from Gujarat (Western India), made with fermented batter of different flours. I grew up in North India seeing just one variety of Dhokla. Later on through my Gujarati friends I came to know about white dhokla / Khatta dhokla (rice based), Semolina (sooji) dhokla, Khaman dhokla, lentil (dal) dhokla etc., etc.…..
The very first time we had this Khatta Dhokla at our Gujarati friend Aparna’s place and my son became a big fan since then. Now he takes this khatta dhokla in his lunch box at least once a week….his dhokla is made with rice. There are different ways to make this khatta dhokla …Try this khatta dhokla recipe and please do share your comments…

khatta dhokla

Ingredients for dhokla
(serves 4)

  • ¾ cup rice
  • 2 tbsp semolina
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 pinches asafoetida (heeng)
  • 1½ tsp ginger chili paste
  • 1 tsp Lemon juice
  • ¼ cup sour yogurt
  • 1 tsp fruit salt (Eno)
  • Oil to grease the dish

For Seasoning (tadka):

  • Oil 1 tbsp
  • Mustard seeds 1 tsp
  • Sesame seeds 1 tsp

For Garnishing:

  • Chopped coriander leaves 2 tbsp
  • Red chili powder to taste

To serve:

Method of preparation:

  1. Clean, wash and soak the rice in enough water for about 6 hours.
  2. Strain the water and grind rice in the grinder.
  3. Keep aside the rice batter for a few hours to ferment it. You can also ferment it overnight.
  4. Add semolina, yogurt, salt, lemon juice, and ginger chili paste in the fermented rice batter. Mix well. Check the consistency of the batter, if it is thick add a little more yogurt. It should be easy to pour.
  5. In a steamer/ sauce pan/ pressure cooker heat 1¼ cup water.
  6. Grease 2 thalis or round baking pans. You can also use dhokla thali.
  7. Add 1 tsp Eno (Fruit Salt) in the batter and sprinkle a few drops of water on top of Eno. Stir well.
  8. Now transfer the batter in the greased thalis/ pans.
khatta dhokla
dhokla batter poured in the thalis
  1. Place the dish in the boiling water steamer. Cover the lid.
khatta dhokla
  1. Steam cook Dhokla for about 12 minutes on medium heat.
  2. To check if the dhokla is cooked completely: Insert a toothpick/ knife in the side of the dhokla; if it comes out clean, then it means the dhokla is done. If the knife is not clean, we need to steam it for a few more minutes.
  3. Let it cool down for 2-5 minutes. Now cut the pieces of dhokla as you like.

For Seasonong:

  1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a small pan. Add mustard seeds, when seeds stop spluttering add sesame seeds, fry for a few seconds, and turn off the heat.
  2. Pour the seasoning on the dhokla evenly.
  3. Garnish with chopped coriander leves. Sprinkle a little bit of red chili powder.
  4. Serve delicious and healthy khatta dhokla with chutney.

Some Tips/ Suggestions:

  1. I have learned this dhokla recipe from a Gujarati friend and she makes a thin khatta dhokla in a thali set (shallow pan set). She was very kind to gift me this dhokla thali set shown above. If you do not have thali use regular round baking dish.
  2. Use a little water to grind rice and do not overgring rice.
  3. Please be patient once the dhokla is steam cooked - Do let it cool for 2-4 minutes, and then it will be much easier to cut the pieces.
  4. If you have time you can also ferment the rice paste overnight.
  5. The khatta dhokla mix can be found in Indian sores as well. You can also use dry ground rice. I prefer coarsely ground rice for this recipe.
khatta dhokla

Suggestions For Lunch boxes:

Dhoklas are my son's favorite lunch box meal. With Dhokla I usually pack some fruits and a small piece of dessert. This picture shows Dhokla, red grapes, tamarid and dates chutney, a biscuit for dessert and some dry roasted peanuts. You can pack some other fruits as per your kids taste.

khatta dhokla for lunch boxes

Some other Kid's Lunch box ideas

Some Other steam cooked snacks/ starters:

nylon dhokla oat idlies sooji dhokla