This dish is dedicated to making your snack times brilliant: uttapam is a cross between a pancake and a crumpet, to which you can add any vegetables. I am partial to squashed tomatoes, sweet caramelized onions, and the odd chile, and I am also not averse to Cheddar grated over the top (when no other Indians are looking).
Makes 8 (enough for 4 to snack on)
FOR THE UTTAPAMS
1 cup rice flour
¾ cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
1 cup warm water
FOR THE TOPPING
2 red onions, sliced
2 Indian green chiles, slit lengthways
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
½ pound ripe baby tomatoes, sliced thinly
Put both flours, the baking soda, salt, and yogurt into a bowl. Mix thoroughly, then make a well and add the water and eggs. Whisk to a smooth batter and leave to one side.
To make the topping, put 3 tablespoons of oil into a frying pan and, when hot, add the red onions. Cook for 12 to 15 minutes, until the onions have caramelized, then add the green chiles, salt, and black pepper, and stir. Add the sliced tomatoes, stir again, then take off the heat.
To cook the uttapam, put 1 teaspoon of oil into a non-stick frying pan over medium heat. When hot, pour a small ladleful of batter (around ¼ cup) into the pan, smooth it out into a round with the back of your ladle, and allow to set for 1 minute. Then take a tablespoonful of the tomato mixture and place it on top. Flip the uttapam and cook for another minute, or until cooked through, then shuffle onto a plate.
It’s always a good idea to test a little of the first one to check the cooking times and flavor, adjusting either if need be, before cooking the rest of the uttapams.
These are delicious with a vegetable sambhar (see here) and coconut chutney (here).