Tag Archives: corn dosai

Vellai Chola Dosai/White Corn Pancakes (Whole Grain Dosai Series)

Vellai Cholam/White Corn is next on the list. This is a pancake using fresh corn.
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Now, with the title, whole grain dosais/pancakes, can fresh corn be included?

Is Corn a vegetable, grain or a fruit?

 

Corn seed is actually a vegetable, a grain, and a fruit. Corn seed is a vegetable because it is harvested for eating. (Usually sweet corn when grain is harvested at the milk stage.) Corn seed is a grain because it is a dry seed of a grass species. (Usually field corn when harvested after the grain is relatively dry.) Corn seed is a fruit because that is the botanical definition.http://www.extension.org/pages/36971/please-settle-a-dispute-is-sweet-corn-a-vegetable-or-a-grain-what-is-the-difference-how-about-field-#.U6LYm3bZU3A

 

According to the Whole Grains Council, fresh corn is usually classified as a vegetable and dried corn (including popcorn) as a grain.

Corn is a whole grain if the bran, germ, and endosperm are all left intact, just like whole wheat. If the corn is milled or degermed to remove the bran and germ, then it is a refined grain. http://blogs.extension.iastate.edu/foodsavings/2013/07

 

Of course, if one has dried corn,  replace in place of fresh corn in this recipe and soak with the lentil for 4-6 hours, grind to a smooth batter and let it ferment overnight and make pancakes. (Target sort of justified isn’t it).

Still, I am courageous enough to post this under a whole grain dosai-  with two things in mind-

1. the very kind readers who don’t oppose

2. the goodness of fresh corn that gives equal nutrients to fit as a whole grain
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Interesting facts about white corn

 

White maize is biologically and genetically very similar to yellow maize, although there is a difference in appearance due to the absence of carotin oil pigments in the kernel which otherwise cause the yellow colour of the grain. Production conditions and cultivation methods are largely identical.

Among the individual geographical regions of the developing countries, white maize production is of paramount importance in Africa. In this region, which produces about one-third of the global white maize crop, it represents about 90 percent of the total regional maize output. The main producers include Kenya, Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe, countries in which white maize represents between two-thirds and 90 percent of total cereals production. Other important producers of the region include Egypt, Ethiopia and Nigeria, where white maize constitutes from 15-35 percent of total cereals production. In these latter countries, white maize rivals in importance other cereals, such as wheat, rice, millet and sorghum. http://www.fao.org/docrep/w2698e/w2698e03.htm#TopOfPage

 

Corns come in various colours – among them, the yellow corn, common on the cob; white corn is more chewy. But makes very good pancakes. I have already posted chola dosai/corn dosai with milled yellow corn – the powder version. see – https://dosaikal.com/2012/05/24/chola-dosaiyellow-corn-flour-pancake/

This one is with fresh white corn. Here in Cambodia, the markets are filled with yellow and white corns. Depending on the season, sometimes yellow and sometimes white is in bulk.

I like the yellow ones to be pressure cooked as a snack with salt and pepper, the yellow corn, the more chewy among the two is preferred as dosai/pancake.

White Corn Dosai can be made with white corn alone as the ingredient without black gram, blended with water and salt to make a batter. Dosai comes out good, but should administer caution while spreading in the pan.

The one I have made in this post is with the combination of dehusked black gram as in Idly or Plain dosai. Since I have used fresh white corn, I soaked the black gram alone with fenugreek seeds. After grinding the batter, fermentation is not needed. The batter might become sour or even go waste as the fresh white corn would get spoilt soon.
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A Few Health Benefits of Corn

Anti-oxidant
You can get health-supportive antioxidant benefits from all varieties of corn, including white, yellow, blue, purple and red corn. But recent research has shown the antioxidant benefits from different varieties of corn actually come from different combinations of phytonutrients.

Corn is actually a unique phytonutrient-rich food that provides us with well-documented antioxidant benefits. In terms of conventional antioxidant nutrients, corn is a good source of the mineral manganese. But it is corn’s phytonutrients that have taken center stage in the antioxidant research on corn. Different varieties of corn highlight different combinations of antioxidant phytonutrients.
Fibre
Corn is a food that gives us plenty of chewing satisfaction, and its high ratio of insoluble-to-soluble fiber is partly the reason.
Digestive properties
Recent research has shown that corn can support the growth of friendly bacteria in our large intestine and can also be transformed by these bacteria into short chain fatty acids, or SCFAs. These SCFAs can supply energy to our intestinal cells and thereby help lower our risk of intestinal problems, including our risk of colon cancer.
Tackles blood sugar
Given its good fiber content, its ability to provide many B-complex vitamins including vitamins B1, B5 and folic acid, and its notable protein content (about 5-6 grams per cup), corn is a food that would be expected to provide blood sugar benefits.
Sufficient fiber and protein content in a food helps prevent too rapid or too slow digestion of that food. protein and fiber also help prevent too rapid or too slow uptake of sugar from the digestive tract up into the bloodstream. Once the uptake of sugar is steadied, it is easier to avoid sudden spikes or drops in blood sugar. http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=90
Vellai Chola Dosai/White Corn Pancake

 

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Ingredients (makes approximately 10-12 dosais)

  • vellai cholam/white corn – fresh kernels- when removed – 2 cups
  • ulundham paruppu/dehusked black gram – 1/2 cup
  • vendhayam/fenugreek seeds – 1/2 tsp
  • uppu/salt – to taste
  • yennai/oil – to make dosais

 

white corn – soaked them for 15 mins. as I had refrigerated them the previous night

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Method of Preparation

  1. Wash and soak dehusked black gram and fenugreek seeds in enough water for 2-3 hrs or if the weather is not too hot, can soak overnight
  2. Grind the black gram-fenugreek with fresh white corn kernels together in a grinder/blender to a smooth and fine paste
  3. Mix  enough salt and the batter is ready to make dosais
  4. The extra batter should be kept refrigerated for further use
  5. Make hot Dosais and serve with vengaya thuvayal /onion chutney or any chutney of choice
  6. After the dosais, more/buttermilk which is the diluted version of yoghurt with salt is served as coolant
  7. The buttermilk aids in digestion.

 

the batter

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Note:

  1. If one is using dried corn, soak overnight like the black gram
  2. Dry red chillies can be ground together with the soaked ingredients for a spicy taste
  3. Chopped shallots mixed to the batter or spread over the dosai while cooking adds a different flavor to the pancake
  4. Any chutney of choice, but preferably with garlic, that would aid in digestion suits well
  5. The chutney can also contain shallots that would aid in cooling the system.
  6. Buttermilk is highly preferred with asafoetida to avoid gastric problems and also acts as a coolant.

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Chola Dosai/Yellow Corn Flour Pancake

 

healthy chola dosai/corn dosai

 

Cholam means Corn in Tamil language.   Before rice became a staple food in Tamilnadu,  cultivated cholam/corn, kezhvaragu/finger millet, kambu/pearl millet and many more natural grains which are uncommon in cities and becoming less common in towns and villages these days were used in making kanji/porridge or  cooked as main course meal.

Even today, every area – be it rural or urban in Tamilnadu has one or many local grinding mills. Ladies of the household use the local grinding mill to grind their gothumai/wheat, cholam/corn, kezhvaragu/finger millet, kambu/pearl millet and other whole grains to powder for usage in their day-to-day cooking – idli, dosai, upma and so on.   Powders to make all staple and speciality gravies like sambar, rasam, puli kuzhambu, kuruma and many more have to be grounded in these mills. Hence, these local grinding mills are indispensable. Nowadays, the whole grain powders are available ready-made in super markets.

 

Whole grains have some valuable antioxidants not found in fruits and vegetables, as well as B vitamins, vitamin E, magnesium, iron and fiber.

The medical evidence is clear that whole grains reduce risks of heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes and obesity. Few foods can offer such diverse benefits.

People who eat whole grains regularly have a lower risk of obesity, as measured by their body mass index and waist-to-hip ratios. They also have lower cholesterol levels. http://www.wholegrainscouncil.org/whole-grains-101

 

That is why I thought I could share one of the easiest dosai batters, though needs little practice while making dosais/pancakes – Chola Dosai.

Makka Cholam/Sweet Corn is more common in most of the tourist/picnic spots… in beaches and hill stations – grilled corn, flavoured with juice of lemon, salt and chilly powder makes a spicy-tangy comfort food.

Dried corn is milled into a powder to make different breakfast and dinner main courses in Tamilnadu…. especially in rural Tamilnadu. I think it is slowly becoming a restricted affair in the cities to make idlis or dosais from different kinds of grains. Lack of time due to fast paced life!

Now, to some health benefits and historic facts of corn…

 

Corn is actually a unique phytonutrient-rich food that provides us with well-documented antioxidant benefits. In terms of conventional antioxidant nutrients, corn is a good source of vitamin C as well as the mineral manganese. But it is corn’s phytonutrients that have taken center stage in the antioxidant research on corn. http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=90

Archaeological studies indicate that corn was first cultivated by the primitive people of Mesoamerica at least 5600 years ago.

Corn or maize was the primary starch for Native Americans for centuries. The kernels were boiled or fried, or ground to cornmeal after drying.  http://jugalbandi.info/2007/11/indian-corn/

 

 

The evidence of maize in archaeological sites in China and its depiction in Hoysala Temples in India, both dated before the 15th century A.D., suggests that this domesticated crop was diffused by human action before the arrival of Columbus in the New World. The implications of this evidence are of great magnitude, since the presence of maize in Asia indicates that humans were able to migrate between both hemispheres; more than likely through trans-oceanic means of travel. http://geography.uoregon.edu/carljohannessen/research.html

 

 

cholam/corn

 

While coming from Chennai, I had brought chola maavu or the corn powder milled from the nearest grinding mill. After that was done, I get the packed yellow corn flour from the indian store.

 

chola maavu/corn flour

 

 

Chola Dosai

Ingredients (makes approximately 4 dosais)

  • chola maavu/yellow corn flour – 1 cup
  • salt – as needed
  • water – enough to make batter

Batter

Mix chola maavu, salt and water into a lumpless loose batter.

 

pour in patches

 

more if required

 

spread to make it even

 

turn to cook

 

 

Method of Preparation

  1. Heat dosaikal/tawa/flat pan on stove
  2. When hot, grease well with gingelly oil or any cooking oil
  3. Take enough batter in a ladle and pour in circular motion from inner to outer or outer to inner side of pan
  4. Pour more batter if needed and spread to make a crispy fine dosai/pancake
  5. Do not make like normal dosai method – pouring the dosai batter in the middle of the tawa and spreading it evenly in circular motion; see  https://dosaikal.com/2011/08/14/basic-dosaidosa/
  6. Pouring the batter in patches, and then quickly spreading it evenly on pan makes perfect chola dosai
  7. Sprinkle oil on the outer edge of the dosai and let it cook till brown
  8. Turn the dosai to cook on both sides
  9. Serve hot with preferred chutney.  see https://dosaikal.com/category/chutneys/.

 

cooked well on the other side

 

ready to serve

 

 

Note:

  1. This batter would stick to the dosaikal/pan immediately – hence cannot be made like the normal dosai – in circular motion from inside to outside.
  2. Pouring in patches from outside to inside or vice versa and then spreading helps to avoid broken dosais.
  3. Takes a little practice to be successful. Good Luck!