My family's Surati Khaman Dhokla Recipe (a savory chickpeas cake)
If you love healthy and spicy snacks, then my family's Khaman Recipe is just for you! This type of dhokla is made with overnight soaked chana dal (chickpeas), yogurt, and spices.
Coming straight from the kitchen of my Surati grandparents! Not only is it one of my favorite snacks but also a popular Indian one. A savory chickpeas cake never tasted so good!
Surati Khaman Dhokla
❤️ Why you'll love it
It's packed with protein, meal preps well, and is family friendly. The three most important things we all need these days, right? It also pairs well with a cup of masala chai. We are winning folks!
Khaman Batter Ingredients
- dried chana dal (dried split chick peas)
- yogurt, plain
- turmeric powder
- ginger, fresh and grated
- green chili peppers, fresh and blended
- cooking oil
- mustard seeds (rye)
- cumin seeds (jeera seeds)
- asafaetido (hing)
- coconut, shredded and unsweetened (fresh preferred)
- fresh slitted jalapenos, serranos, or thai chillies
- fresh cilantro, chopped
- Start by washing the dried chana dal with cold water.
- Soak the chana dal in a large bowl with cold water for 8 hours.
- Drain the water (do not rinse again).
- Blend the chana dal with ginger, green chilies, salt, a pinch of turmeric and asafaetido.
- Mix in plain yogurt.
- Cover the bowl with a lid and place it in a warm area for 8 hours (alternatively, you can use an Instant Pot on yogurt mode for 8 hours)
- After 8 hours, mix the batter and now you can make Surati Khaman Dhokla!
- Heat water in a steaming vessel.
- Brush some oil on a dhokla dish.
- Place the dish inside of the vessel so that it gets hot while you prep the batter.
- In a bowl, mix the Surati khaman batter with eno fruit salt.
- Pour the batter into the dhokla dish that is now heated.
- Place a lid on the steaming vessel.
- Cook the khaman for about 15-20 minutes on high heat.
- When opening the lid, try not to let the condensation drip back into the pot.
- Take the dish out of the vessel and let it cool down while you make the tempered oil.
- In a small butter pot, heat a generous amount of oil.
- Once heated, add mustard seeds.
- After they begin to pop, add the cumin seeds and chili peppers.
- Add the asafaetido and cook for about 10-20 seconds (or until peppers are translucent).
- Pour the tempered oil over the khaman.
- Cut and serve as is or with sev.
- Steaming Vessel (can use a dish inside of an ourplace pan to steam)
- Dhokla Dish/Tray for cooking (can use any dish that fits inside a steaming vessel)
- Pot Holders
- Large Bowl with Lid
- Instant Pot (optional)
- Blender/Juicer (I use a BlendTec)
- Butter Pot for vagar
- Final serving/storage container
Storing the Batter
Khaman batter can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days or it can be fozen for about 3 months.
Storing the Dhokla
Once cooked, the Khaman Dhokla can be kept in the fridge for about 5 days. Reheat in the microwave with a lid to keep them soft and fluffy.
- Try not to shake the vessel (or even the stove) when the khaman is cooking. It can deflate the rise or prevent them from rising.
- Be sure to check the expiration date on your Eno. Sometimes, older ingredients can also prevent khaman from rising.
- TIME SAVER- You can skip the fermenting stage for the batter by eliminating yogurt as an ingredient and substituting it with a little bit of lemon juice instead.
Dairy Free- use lemon juice instead of yogurt and skip the fermentation process.
☕️ Pairs well with...
Dhokla pairs perfectly with a piping hot cup of chai or Indian coffee. Most times served as a side dish with a complete meal of kadhi, rice, and sabzi. Khaman is topped with sev, marinated onions, and fried chili peppers.
A dhokla recipe that originated in Gujarat, India. It is made with chickpeas, yogurt, and spices.
Every city and every household has different recipes. Each variety, I am sure is great. Here, I shared a recipe that is common to Surat, India.
If using soaked chana dal, then it can take anywhere from 9-18 hours total depending on fermentation.
Yes, for up to 3 months.
A large bowl, steaming vessel such as an Our Place Pan or a large pot with a stand inside which can hold a dish on top of it, pot holders, knife, spatula, tempered oil or butter pot, and a blender.
Yes! Lightly oil the waffle maker and pour the batter. Cook until slightly brown. Top it with tempered oil for optimal flavor.
Yes! Add equal amounts of water and batter and cook for about 5 minutes or until fluffy.
Of course! I eliminate the chili peppers and add less ginger when making this recipe for my kids.
📚 Related Recipes
Surati Khaman Dhokla
- Steaming Vessel (something similar like an Ourplace Always Pan)
- Bowl with a Lid or an Instant Pot, to ferment in
- Small Butter Pot
- Oven Mits or Pot Holders
- Large Bowl or Tray, to store end product in
- 1 cup chana dal (split dried chick-peas)
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated
- 1 tablespoon fresh green chilies, blended (jalapeno, serrano, thai)
- 3 tablespoon plain yogurt (see note 1 for substitution)
- ½ teaspoon hing (asafetido)
- pinch turmeric powder (optional)
- 2 tablespoon oil + some for coating
- 2 tablespoon eno (fruit salt) add this right before cooking
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 tablespoon whole mustard seeds (rye)
- ½ tablespoon cumin seeds (jeera)
- ½ teaspoon asafaetido (hing)
- large chopped fresh green chili peppers
- ½ cup chopped cilantro (do not add to the oil instead pour tempered oil over it)
- 2 tablespoon shredded fresh coconut (do not add to the oil. Instead pour tempered oil over it)
INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE BATTER
- Wash the dal and soak for 8 hours. (Tip: soak it in the blender for less cleaning)
- Remove the water and rinse again one last time.
- Add ginger, green chili, yogurt, salt, hing, pinch of turmeric powder, and enough water until half of the daal is soaked.
- Blend until smooth/mildly course. I prefer a few chunks of daal to be left in the mixture, but you can blend it fully as well.
- Pour the batter into a bowl (or leave it in the blender if there is enough space for the batter to rise).
- Let the batter ferment in a warm dark place for about 8-12. Alternatively, you can use the yogurt mode on an Instant Pot to ferment for about 12 hours. Simply pour the batter into the Instant Pot and set yogurt mode to 12 hours.
- Once fermented, you can make the khaman right away, refrigerate for up to 3 days, or freeze for about 3 months.
HOW TO MAKE THE STEAMED KHAMAN
- Add water to a steaming vessel (I do NOT recommend the Instant Pot at this time), place an empty oiled tray inside the vessel (assuring it does not touch the water), cover with a lid, and let the tray heat up while the water boils on medium-high heat. NOTE: heating the tray before adding the mixture is a key tip here.
- Split the dal mixture into two portions (this will depend on the size of your tray but the recipe makes two 10" trays of khaman).
- In one portion that you are going to cook, add 1 tablespoon of Eno and 1 tablespoon oil. Mix it quickly and well. This will activate the Eno.
- Open the lid to the vessel and pour the mixture into the tray. It should spread evenly. If not, gently tap and spread. Try to work quickly here
- Making sure the heat is still on a high/medium-high, place the lid on top of the vessel immediately and let it cook for 12 minutes. KEY TIP: Do not tap, touch, shake, or move the vessel in any way. It can prevent the khaman from rising. (Example: It's almost like a cake when you take it out of the oven mid-cooking process.)
- Once the time is up, do both of these at the same time: Lower the flame and open the lid without spilling the condensation from the lid onto the khaman.
- Take the tray out of the vessel and let it cool for about 5-10 minutes.
- Once it cools, cut into small squares using a butter knife. I like to cut it into 1" squares but you are welcome to cut it bigger or smaller.
- Using a flat spatula, place the front end into a cut you just made. Then slide it under to lift up the squares.
- Place the chunks into a large bowl. Continue to steam additional khaman, at this point before moving on to the next step.
- Top the khaman with cilantro and coconut shreds. Then make the tempered oil.
- You must work quickly. Heat oil in a small butter pot. Once the oil is hot add mustard seeds + jeera seeds.
- They will begin to pop. Once the popping stops, immediately add hing and chopped chili peppers.
- Let the peppers cook until slightly translucent.
- Drizzle the oil mixture on top of the cilantro and coconut.
- Toss it together and enjoy!
- Serve with sev, marinated onions, fresh chili peppers, and a cup of hot chai.
OPTIONAL WAFFLE MAKER INSTRUCTIONS
- Pour the batter on a lightly oiled waffle maker. Let it cook a few minutes.
- Remove from the waffle maker and enjoy as is topped with some oil and jaljeera, chaat masala, or red chili powder.
- Combine batter with equal amounts of water. Pour it into a coffee mug until it is half way full.
- Cook for about 5 minutes or until done in a microwave on high power.
- Enjoy topped with oil and chaat masala, jaljeera, and red chili powder.
How to make Waffle Khaman Recipe Step by Step Instructions
I use a small waffle maker that is perfect for my kitchen, but feel free to use a larger version as well. All Clad has a waffle maker that is going to make my dreams come true one day!