I have been in Delhi for a few weeks now and have tasted so many preparations, which were just memories from childhood, not-so-long-ago! In my journey of exploring new and old dishes during my stay in India, I have picked chilla as my first entry. What better dish than chilla - which is like a pancake, both salty and spicy and is eaten for breakfast!
Chillas can be made from moong dal or besan (gram flour). I would imagine that Chilla - like many-a-besan (gram flour) dishes, originates from Rajasthan. However, Moong dal chillas are more popular amongst families in general, as well as on cookery programmes, whereas I can only remember eating besan chillas for weekend breakfast in our house. I don't remember having chillas at anyone else’s homes either…but this may well be, because it is mainly eaten for breakfast and one doesn’t often get invited for breakfast!
Chillas need to be prepared fresh and eaten straight from the pan. It is usually eaten with chutney and I would specifically recommend eating it with green spicy coriander chutney.
- 250 gms Besan
- 1 tsf Ajwain (Carrom seeds)
- 1 ½ tsf Salt
- ½ tsf Chilli powder
- ¼ tsf Turmeric powder
- 1 tsf Garlic paste
- 1 tsf Ginger paste
- Hand full of chopped methi (Kasori)
- 1 medium onion chopped finely
- Oil for shallow frying
- Mix all the ingredients except oil with approx 200 mls of water into a batter which should similar consistency to pan cakes batter. Keep aside.
- Heat a flat frying pan over medium heat. When hot spread some oil and wipe it with a tissue.
- Now put a ladle full of batter in the middle the frying pan and spread it into a pancake.
- Put some oil on the pan cake and let it cook it on lower heat till the under surface of the pancake is lightly brown.
- Now turn over and cook the other surface till that is also lightly brown. You may want to press the pancake with a flat ladle so the whole pancake is heated evenly.
- Eat it with chutney.