Kala Chana Nu Rasavalu Shaak| Gujarati Black Chickpea Curry

Kala Chana Nu Rasavalu Shaak is an utterly delectable Gujarati-style black chickpea curry, a beautiful medley of flavours. It is sweet, it is spicy, it is salty, it is tangy. It makes for just the perfect accompaniment to rotis and parathas, and goes well with dosas and steamed rice as well. When Shantaben, a Gujarati neighbour of ours, taught me how to make this Kala Chana Nu Rasavalu Shaak, I was amazed by its simplicity. How can a curry be so simple, yet so delicious, I wondered. But it was just that – beautifully simple, elegant and absolutely scrumptious.

My memories of Kala Chana Nu Rasavalu Shaak and Shantaben are inextricably tied to Thatha, my paternal grandfather.

My grandfather lost both his parents when he was around 3 years of age. His father died first, and then, his mother followed, in about a week’s time. It was Thatha‘s elder sister who took care of him, who brought him up, made sure he was educated and settled in a job. ‘We were living in hard times then. A bowl of day-old curd rice would feel heavenly to us, like a God-sent gift,’ he would always tell me. ‘You kids have too much. Too much choice, too much more stuff than you really need,’ he would say. As I grew up, I began to understand what he meant.

Thatha was in his 20s when he moved from the little village in Tamilnadu where he grew up to Gujarat, to pursue higher education. By then, he was already married to my grandmother, Paati. In Baroda, Gujarat, Thatha found himself a job in a textile mill (mills were big in Gujarat then!), and began to study Textile Technology. He began to send money back home to Paati and, slowly and gradually, started carving out a life for himself.

In the course of his career, Thatha moved to Ahmedabad (that explains my connection with the city!), and took on a better job in a better textile mill. Once he had saved enough for a down payment on an apartment in the city, he bought it. This house was palatial compared to the one he grew up in! When he thought he was making enough to comfortably manage a family in a city, Paati came to Ahmedabad to live with her husband. Three children came into the picture – all sons – and one of them was my dad. It was in this house that Thatha bought in Ahmedabad where I grew up and lived for a considerable chunk of my life.

Shantaben, an elderly Gujarati lady, lived in the apartment above us, in Ahmedabad. She had lost her husband when she was young, and had no children of her own. Thatha began seeing in Shantaben the sister who had lovingly raised him after their parents’ passing away. Shantaben began seeing our family as her own. It was at a meal at Shantaben‘s home – I don’t remember for what occasion – that this Kala Chana Nu Rasavalu Shaak was served to us. I was a teenager then, I guess. It was our first tryst with this beauty, and all of us loved, loved, loved it. When we told Shantaben about this, a few days later, she laughed. ‘This is something we make regularly, in Gujarati households. It is nothing special!,’ she said. ‘Come, I’ll teach you how to make it!,’ and whisked Amma and me away to her kitchen. We saw, we learnt, and the rest is history, as they say.

Here is how to make the Kala Chana Nu Rasavalu Shaak, Shantaben‘s way.

Ingredients (serves 3-4):

  1. 1 cup black chickpeas aka kala chana
  2. 1/2 tablespoon oil
  3. 2 pinches of asafoetida aka hing
  4. 1 teaspoon mustard aka rai
  5. 1 teaspoon cumin aka jeera
  6. 1 sprig fresh curry leaves
  7. Salt, to taste
  8. A small piece of tamarind
  9. 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  10. Red chilli powder, to taste
  11. 1 teaspoon garam masala, or to taste
  12. 1 tablespoon powdered jaggery, or to taste
  13. 8-10 sprigs of fresh coriander leaves
  14. About 1 tablespoon gram flour aka besan


1. Wash the kala chana thoroughly under running water. Soak them overnight, in just enough water to cover them.

2. In the morning, drain off the water from the kala chana, and add just enough fresh water to cover them. Pressure cook the kala chana for 4 whistles. Let the pressure come down naturally, and keep the kala chana aside. Do not discard the water in which the kala chana was pressure cooked – reserve it for use later in making the Kala Chana Nu Rasavalu Shaak.

3. Soak the tamarind in boiling water, for about 10 minutes. When the tamarind is cool enough to handle, extract a thick paste out of it, adding water little by little. Keep aside.

4. Chop the coriander finely. Keep aside.

5. Heat the oil in a pan. Add in the mustard, and allow it to splutter. Add the cumin, asafoetida and the curry leaves. Let them stay in for a couple of seconds.

6. Now, turn the flame to medium. Add the cooked kala chana and the reserved water (which they were cooked in).

7. Add in salt to taste, jaggery and tamarind paste. Mix well.

8. Cook uncovered on medium flame for 4-5 minutes, or till 75% of the water has evaporated. Taste and adjust seasonings as required.

9. Meanwhile, make a paste of the gram flour in a little water, in a small bowl. Keep handy.

9. When the gravy has cooked for 4-5 minutes, add in the garam masala and the gram flour paste. Mix well. Cook uncovered on medium flame for about 2 minutes more. Switch off the gas when the gravy begins to thicken, but is still a tad watery. If you feel the gravy has become too thick at this stage, add a bit of water. Remember that the curry will become even thicker on cooling.

10. Mix in finely chopped coriander leaves. Serve hot with rotis, parathas, pooris, steamed rice.


  1. I have always had this Kala Chana Nu Rasavalu Shaak as a no onion-no garlic preparation, and so make it the same way. We like it this way as well. If you want to, you may add some finely chopped garlic, ginger and onions after the tempering is done.
  2. Sugar can be used in place of jaggery powder.
  3. Remember to pressure cook the kala chana in just enough water to cover them. The water in which they are cooked is full of protein and, hence, it is a good idea to retain it and use it in making the curry.
  4. If you want to, you can add in some cumin powder and coriander powder, along with the garam masala. I usually skip this, as I like keeping this curry as simple as I can.
  5. Amma adds in sambar masala instead of the garam masala, in making this Kala Chana Nu Rasavalu Shaak. The result, although not strictly Gujarati, still tastes awesome.
  6. Tomato puree can be used in making this curry, in place of the tamarind paste. Alternatively, you could use a mix of tomato puree and tamarind paste. Squeeze in a dash of lemon juice at the end, if you feel the tanginess from the tomatoes and/or tamarind is not enough.
  7. I use home-made garam masala to make this Kala Chana Nu Rasavalu Shaak.
  8. I like to keep this curry quite runny, almost like a daal, rather than making it thick. Adjust the consistency of the gravy as per your personal taste preferences.

Did you like this recipe? I hope you will try out this Kala Chana Nu Rasavalu Shaak too, and that you will love it as much as we do!


I’m sending this recipe to Fiesta Friday #220, co-hosted by Mollie @ The Frugal Hausfrau and Jhuls @ The Not So Creative Cook.


Enchanted At The Mawphlang Sacred Grove, Meghalaya

This is no ordinary forest you are about to enter. This is a sacred grove, home to La Basa, a protective deity who safeguards all of us. He watches over this forest. Anyone who enters with bad intentions will have to face dire consequences. You can be inside for as long as you want, but please remember that you cannot take away anything from this forest – not even a single leaf or a dried twig,” our guide warns the husband and me, in no uncertain terms.

We are about to enter the Mawphlang Sacred Grove, in the East Khasi Hills of Meghalaya, a bare 25 km or so away from Shillong. From the outside, we can see absolutely nothing of the forest – all we can see is a huge open plain, with a tall grassy hedge covering most part of it. A little man-sized opening in the hedge indicates the entrance to the sacred grove.

We gulp, sort of nervous of getting inside with the bub.

Don’t worry one bit, please. This place is 100% safe. There are hundreds of tourists who visit here every day, and not even a single untoward incident has happened,” the guide is  quick to reassure us, probably noticing our slight discomfort. “The Basa protects,” he adds.

Stones of Khasi symbolism, just outside the Mawphlang Sacred Grove. This indicates the importance of family, we are told.

Chin up, we step into the man-sized clearing, the husband baby-wearing the bub, me walking close behind. We set foot into the Mawphlang Sacred Grove. And it is then that magic happens.

We find we have stepped into a beautiful, beautiful forest, straight out of an Enid Blyton book or from the movie Avatar. The scenery around us is nature at its best, pure, untouched, non-commercialised. At the very first glimpse of the Mawphlang Sacred Grove, we are enchanted.

Walking into the Mawphlang Sacred Grove, our guide leading the way

The Mawphlang Sacred Grove, covering about 80 hectares, has stood the test of time – it is a place that is over 1000 years old. The forest is home to several scores of species of birds and animals. It is a treasure trove of rare plants and trees, several of them bearing immense medicinal properties,” our guide says. “The Khasi community here takes care of this forest. The Khasis believe in nature. They revere nature. Any ailment we suffer from, we believe nature can cure. All of these cures are right here, within this sacred grove,” he adds.

We have been lucky to find a guide who speaks very good English, in a community that speaks, mostly, only the local dialect of Khasi. As we walk deeper into the forest, he points out natural wonders that we must absolutely see, telling us about the history of the place. We lap all of it up, eyes agape in wonder, mouths slightly open. The path through the forest is uneven, slippery at places, but it is definitely not a difficult trek.

Left: A plant that bears flowers which look exactly like a cobra’s raised hood; Right: A little bird’s nest; inside the Mawphlang Sacred Grove

We get up, close and personal with bird’s nests, a variety of mushrooms, flowers that look like the hoods of cobras, different types of orchids, herbs that cure skin diseases and headaches, leaves that help in lowering cholesterol and blood pressure. We check out Helicopter Flowers – flowers that rotate like helicopters before landing on the ground – and plants that are shaped like baskets.

Left: The Helicopter Flower. Right: A pretty thing our guide picked up from the forest floor for us to see. I forget what this is, now.

Mawphlang‘ is Khasi for ‘land of the grassy stone’ (‘Maw‘ is ‘stone’, while ‘phlang‘ is ‘grassy’, in Khasi). True to its name, and thanks to the legendary rains in Meghalaya, everywhere we look inside the forest, it is green, green, green. The branches of trees all around us, many of the rocks on the forest floor, are covered with dense green moss.

New life in an ancient forest. Orchids coming into life on a mossy tree branch, in the Mawphlang Sacred Grove.

The forest is dense, alive, impressive, but surely not gloomy. Rays of bright sunlight pierce through the trees, create a sort of magical space, where we stand and pose for photographs. Being the nature lovers that we are, being inside the forest fills us with an immense sense of peace. The calls of various birds from the trees around us help a great deal, too. Our shoulders relax, and we begin to breathe deeply of the pristine air within the forest, beginning to forget our worries and soaking in the sights and sounds before us. And, as we do this, we fall deeper and deeper and deeper in love with the bountiful, gorgeous forest spread out all around us.

There is always something or the other happening inside the forest, irrespective of whether you are able to see it or not,” our guide tells us. “There is new life coming up, old trees and plants are withering and dying, just like the cycles of our life. There is so much happening below the surface, beyond our sight and wisdom,” he says, and we cannot help but nod along at this.

Here are some out of the multitude of mushrooms we spotted inside the Mawphlang Sacred Grove. Apparently, it takes an expert eye to figure out which ones are poisonous and which ones aren’t.

Closely following the footsteps of our guide, we arrive at a gurgling stream deep inside the forest. The water is pristine, crystal clear, and naturally cold. It is pure enough to drink, the guide tells us, but advises us not to do so. There are animals drinking from the stream all the time, he says, and he is not sure if the water will agree with the stomachs of city-dwellers like us. So, we refrain, and walk ahead, after clicking a few pictures at this hugely beautiful spot.

The clear, clear, clear stream in the midst of Mawphlang Sacred Grove

While we are leaving, we hear a rustle and turn back to spot an extremely beautiful green snake skimming the waters. A couple of beautiful birds fly out from the nearby trees. We hadn’t even known these creatures were around us! In the blink of an eye, before I can fumble to switch my camera on, they are gone. “You are good, kind souls. You are very lucky. Most people who come here don’t get to see any animals,” our guide remarks.

Our young and very passionate guide (on the left), chatting with a worker inside the Mawphlang Sacred Grove. Notice the bamboo basket on the worker’s back? These baskets are used everywhere in Meghalaya.

Kings no longer exist in Meghalaya, but when they did, they would regularly visit the Mawphlang Sacred Grove, we are told. Our guide points out to us various spots within the forest – the place where the king apparently held discussions with his wise men, the place where lambs or cocks would be sacrificed to appease the Basa, the place where the sacrificial meat would be cooked and eaten. To novices like us, these bits of history (tales? folklore?) are utterly fascinating.

The spot, deep within the Mawphlang Sacred Grove, where the King used to convene with his wise men, once upon a time
The spot where the King would eat the sacrificial meat, along with his courtiers
The spot where the King would, apparently, rest after his meal

All too soon, we realise we are at the end of our tour. With our hearts full, refreshed and rejuvenated by our tete-a-tete with nature, we follow the guide back out of the forest. This time around, we take a shorter, less winding route and are back at the entrance in absolutely no time at all.

As we pay the guide for his services and thank him profusely for his energetic presence with us, he advises us to check out the Model Khasi Village just outside the Mawphlang Sacred Grove. We do just that, and thoroughly love the little village constructed to explain to tourists the concept of an actual habitat of the Khasi community.

Part of the pretty little Khasi Model Village, just outside the Mawphlang Sacred Grove

We head back to our cab, thoroughly sated, so very glad that we decided to visit this beautiful place that is still slightly off the beaten track.

If you find yourself in Meghalaya, I would urge you not to give the Mawphlang Sacred Grove a miss, but to embrace it with an open heart. It is one of the most peaceful, untouched places we have been to in a while, and I am sure you will love it too.

Notes for travellers

  1. The Mawphlang grove is sacred to the Khasis. Please do ensure that you respect the rules here, and treat the place with the same reverence that the Khasis do.
  2. This place can be covered en route to Shillong, Mawlynnong or Cherrapunjee.
  3. Please do hire a guide if you wish to take a walking tour within the forest. The trails are winding and confusing, and I would not really recommend going inside on your own. Moreover, you need a guide to point out various species of plants and trees to you, to suggest which ones can be poisonous and which ones are not.
  4. The Mawphlang Sacred Grove is open to tourists every day, from about 9 AM to 5 PM. Photography is permitted. The entrance fees need to be paid at the tourist office right there. Guide charges and camera fees are separate.
  5. There are two kinds of walking tours available here – a half-hour one and a full-hour one. I would personally recommend the full one hour tour.
  6. The forest is, indeed, a safe place to visit for kids and adults alike. The walking trail is not very tough, and anyone with average fitness can undertake it.
  7. Make sure you leave most of your belongings in your cab, if possible. Get into the forest with just a jacket or umbrella (in case of rain), a water bottle and your camera, to facilitate easy walking.
  8. You can request for a guide at the tourist office on the Mawphlang Sacred Grove premises. Most of the guides speak heavily Khasi-accented English.









Healthy Chocolate Coconut Bites| No-Cook Dessert

Are you looking for an easy dessert recipe, something that is not very tough to put together and is yet quite yummy? Well, your search ends here!

Here’s presenting Healthy Chocolate Coconut Bites, a very simple dessert that requires zero cooking, that takes barely minutes to make. It is healthy, to boot, made with raw cane sugar instead of refined sugar. It is absolutely dairy-free as well.

There is the goodness of almond butter in there. The beautiful, classic combination of chocolate and coconut is what makes this healthy dessert absolutely delectable.

Do try this recipe out, will you?

Ingredients (makes 10-12 Healthy Chocolate Coconut Bites):

  1. 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  2. 1/3 cup dry coconut powder + a little more for decoration
  3. 1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
  4. 10 almonds
  5. 4 tablespoons raw cane sugar, or to taste
  6. 4 tablespoons almond butter, or as needed


  1. Dry roast the almonds till crisp, on medium flame. Take care to ensure that the almonds do not burn. Transfer to a plate and let them cool down completely.
  2. When the almonds are cool enough to handle, chop them into slivers. Reserve a few of the almond slivers to use in decoration later, and add the rest to a large mixing bowl.
  3. To the mixing bowl, add the 1/3 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder, 1/3 cup of dry coconut powder, vanilla essence, almond butter, and the raw cane sugar. Mix well, ensuring all the ingredients are thoroughly incorporated together, and form 10-12 balls out of the mixture.
  4. Flatten the balls to make pedas. Decorate the Healthy Chocolate Coconut Bites with dry coconut powder and the reserved roasted almond slivers. Chill in the refrigerator for a couple of hours, in a dry and air-tight box, before serving.


  1. I used Jus’ Amazin’ All Natural almond butter to make these Healthy Chocolate Coconut Bites. If you don’t have it, you can use unsalted butter or fresh cream instead.
  2. Increase or decrease the quantity of cocoa powder, raw cane sugar and dry coconut powder, depending upon your personal taste preferences.
  3. Use just enough almond butter to get the mixture to a dough-like consistency. 4 tablespoons was just right in my case.

Did you like this recipe for Healthy Chocolate Coconut Bites? Do tell me in your comments!


Foodie Monday Blog Hop
This post is for the Foodie Monday Blog Hop. The theme for this week is ‘Healthy Desserts’.


Gastronomic Tour Of Burma @ Burma Burma, Bangalore, With LBB

New foodie place alert in Namma Bengaluru!

After highly successful runs in Mumbai and Gurgaon, Burma Burma Restaurant & Tea Room opened up in Bangalore on April 1, 2018. Yours truly had the opportunity to dine at Burma Burma’s spanking new outlet in Indiranagar, along with a few other foodie afficionados from the city, courtesy of Little Black Book (LBB)-Bangalore.

Namma Burma in Namma Bengaluru!

I have always been up for trying out cuisines from across the globe, and this opportunity to try out Burmese food – something very, very new to me – thrilled me to the core. The experience we had at Burma Burma entirely matched our expectations, and turned out to be utterly awesome!


Khow Suey is probably the best known of Burmese cuisine. However, it is not the be-all and end-all of the food from this exotic land. That is just what Burma Burma has set out to prove. Steamed buns, Burmese parathas, fermented green tea leaves, a variety of teas and never-heard-before desserts – authentic recipes from Burma – are what this place promises to offer, apart from the famed Khow Suey of course. And… it’s all vegetarian (a fact that surprised me), with several Jain offerings on the menu! There’s no alcohol available here.

Location, Decor And Ambience

Burma Burma Restaurant & Tea Room is another beautiful additions to the number of amazing restaurants that Indiranagar already boasts of. The place has a fantastic ambience, decked up with little knick-knacks that will have your mind travelling straight to Burma.

Some of the decor from the walls of Burma Burma Restaurant & Tea Room

There is a ‘tea bar’ near the entrance, complete with high stools, where you can request for freshly-made cups of the huge selection of varieties available.

Food & Drinks

We started the evening with an interesting amuse bouche – a miniature, fried version of Khow Suey. What a delightful palate cleanser this was! This little bite prepared us for the myriad flavours that were about to be introduced to us, over the course of the evening.

The mini Khow Suey that was our amuse bouche!

Then came Samuza Hincho (Burmese for ‘Samosa Soup’) – yes, you read that right! A big, fat samosa cut up into pieces, served in a bowl of tangy soup, with spiced black chickpeas ans spring vegetables, this dish was sheer delight. Weird when you think of it, maybe, but this is quite a popular street food in Burma, and I surely happened to love it. Don’t miss this whenever you visit Burma Burma – highly recommended!

Delight in a bowl – Samuza Hincho or Burmese Samosa Soup!

Next up came the salads. The first one was Tayat Ti Thoke or Raw Mango Salad, made Burmese style. This is made differently from the Thai Raw Mango Salad, with roasted red chilly, cabbage, lettuce and brown onion mixed into shreds of raw mango. I loved this to bits, too!

The next salad that was brought to our table was Mandalay Laphet Thoke or a Tea Leaf Salad straight from Mandalay. This is a traditional Burmese delicacy, made with fermented tea leaves, fried garlic nuts, sesame seeds, tomato and lettuce, apparently. I was highly intrigued to try out this salad – I have never, ever had one made with tea leaves! – but, sadly, it wasn’t meant for my taste buds.

Left: Tohu Mok Palata; Top Right: Mandalay Laphet Thoke; Bottom Right: Tayat Ti Thoke; all at Burma Burma – Bangalore

Post the salads, we were served Tohu Mok Palata, a curry made with tohu (the Burmese version of soy-free tofu) and Burmese-style layered parathas. The parathas were lovely, soft and flaky and almost melt-in-the-mouth, and the tohu curry was extremely flavourful as well. Yum, yum, yum all the way!

Then, we were served Crunchy Tofu Steamed Buns, another Burmese delicacy. The buns – which tasted like the Chinese baos, but with a hint of coconut to them – were pillowy soft. The spicy, crispy tofu filling within went beautifully with the buns, and made for an absolutely delectable whole.

Top Left: The Crunchy Tofu Steamed Buns; Bottom Right: Kyar Yoe Kyaw; Right: A close-up of the steamed buns

Then came the Kyar Yoe Kyaw, Burmese-style lotus stem crisps. These were a far cry from the soya sauce-drenched fried lotus root that you get in most Asian restaurants. These were super-thin slices of lotus stem, deep-fried perfectly, and served with a drizzle of salt and spice, not unlike our good ol’ potato chips. The Kyar Yoe Khaw was oh-so-delish, and I adored them. This would make for the perfect tea-time snack for rainy evenings, me thinks!

All too soon, it was time to move on to the main course, and a palate cleanser was presented to us. We were introduced to the Sea Buckthorn, a shrub that grows in parts of Europe, Mongolia and China, the berries of which are pleasantly sour and extremely delicious. Our palate cleanser was, apparently, prepared from these very Sea Buckthorn berries, and was just as delicious as we had been promised! Utterly refreshing, juicy, sweet and sour, I loved this little shot.

The Sea Buckthorn palate cleanser at Burma Burma – Bangalore

Next came Burma Burma’s signature dish, “Oh No Khow Suey, something that all of us foodie enthusiasts had been waiting for with bated breath. I love a hearty bowl of Khow Suey, and this one at Burma Burma was nothing if not hearty. It was perfectly done, with noodles soaked in a flavourful coconut milk broth, laced with diced Asian veggies, tamarind and lemongrass. This was served to us with an array of D-I-Y toppings, to add to our Khow Suey as we pleased.

Left: The beautiful bowl of “Oh No Khow Suey” at Burma Burma – Bangalore; Right: The array of toppings that came with the Khow Suey

Brown Onion & Roasted Chilly Grilled Sticky Rice came next, little string-tied parcels of sticky rice cooked with a filling of browned onions and roasted chillies, all wrapped up in the banana leaf they were cooked in. This turned out to be something that I liked, but wasn’t exactly charmed by, something I might not order here normally.

To go with the sticky rice parcels, we were served Stir-Fried Seasonal Greens With Tofu, a pungent-smelling dish of assorted veggies and tofu. The smell was extremely overpowering, and I couldn’t really eat this beyond the cursory taste of a spoonful. I understand that this is how the authentic taste and feel of the dish is, in Burma, though.

Left: Brown Onion & Roasted Chilly Grilled Sticky Rice; Top right: The ‘opened’ parcel of grilled sticky rice; Bottom right: Stir-Fried Seasonal Greens With Tofu

The chef of Burma Burma – Bangalore was sweet enough to bring out from the kitchen some of the fermented mustard and fermented soya bean cakes that went into the making of these stir-fried greens, for us to view. It is the fermented mustard that had brought that overpowering, pungent smell to the dish, he said.

Fermented mustard and fermented soya bean cakes, two ingredients that are commonly used in Burmese cooking

We were also offered samples of a few of the beverages on Burma Burma – Bangalore’s menu. We tried out their Lemongrass Cooler, Chocolate Bubble Tea and Pomegranate-Watermelon Cooler.

While the Lemongrass Cooler had a beautiful refreshing fragrance, the bitter aftertaste the drink had made it less than enjoyable. The Chocolate Bubble Tea was good, but not really my kind of beverage. I thoroughly enjoyed the Pomegranate-Watermelon Cooler, though, with its perfect balance of sweet and sour.

Left: Lemongrass Cooler; Centre: Chocolate Bubble Tea; Right: Pomegranate-Watermelon Cooler; at Burma Burma – Bangalore

The desserts came next, and turned out to be the real stars of the show. The gastronomical extravaganza this far had stunned our tastebuds, and the two gorgeous desserts we were presented with literally brought us to the edge of our seats.

The Smokey Avocado Honey Caviar Ice Cream was so very brilliant, I can only tell you to go and experience it for yourself. The stunning smokey effect of this dessert stole the show, and then the taste did the same, all over again. One can barely make out that this mildly sweet, perfectly done, utterly delish dessert was made using avocado and honey! The dessert came topped with mock caviar (fish eggs), made with honey, and added an interesting texture to it. So simple, yet so elegant – this dessert is highly recommended!

The Smokey Avocado Honey Caviar Ice Cream

The dessert that came next – Tagu Piyan – was equally brilliant. This is a Burmese country-side recipe of sago cooked with palm jaggery and served with coconut custard, with Burma Burma’s extravagant flourish. It tasted just ‘Wow!’ when had with the freshly grated coconut and powdered palm jaggery served on the side. This is another dish I’d recommend you try out here!

Tagu Piyan at Burma Burma – Bangalore

To end our meal, we were poured pretty little glasses of Burma Burma’s Lavender Tea out of a pretty little teapot. I am not normally a fan of these fancy varieties of tea – I love my masala chai too much! – but this lavender tea was a revelation. It was so delicate, so refreshing, so soothing to the nerves! I loved it to bits, and made a mental note to try out more such in the times to come.

The very relaxing Lavender Tea that I loved!


The service staff is polite, warm and friendly. We were served a pre-set menu, but it was evident that the staff is well-informed and knowledgeable about the dishes on offer.


A meal for two at Burma Burma will set you back by INR 1500 (approximately).

In hindsight

I loved the attention to detail at Burma Burma, the way efforts have been made to present authentic Burmese fare to the citizens of Bangalore, without adulterating them to suit local tastebuds.

I loved the presentation of every single dish that was brought to us.

I loved how the focus is as much on the taste of the dish, as it is on the presentation. All sho-sha and no substance, that is definitely not the case here.

Eating at Burma Burma is an experience in itself, an experience that I highly recommend you have for yourself. I can’t wait to go back here to try out the other dishes from their vast menu!

Thank you, Burma Burma, for this awesome gastronomic tour to a land far away! LBB, thank you for this fantastic experience!

Burma Burma Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Open Butter Masala Dosa| Multi-Purpose Potato Curry

The husband and I are big-time fans of the Open Butter Masala Dosa that is commonly served in restaurants across Bangalore. We especially love the one from Vasudev Adigas.

For the uninitiated, no, an Open Butter Masala Dosa is not the same as an unfolded Masala Dosa! The two things are so totally different! An Open Butter Masala Dosa is a delicious, thick dosa doused with a yummy coconut podi, served with a couple of spoonfuls of beautiful potato curry, topped with a generous pat of fresh butter, some fresh grated coconut and carrot. What’s to not love?!


The husband introduced me to Open Butter Masala Dosa when we were newly married, and I had just moved to Bangalore. The first time I tried it out, I realised that the Thengai Podi (coconut & lentil powder) that my mom makes would be just right to make these dosas. I began experimenting at home and, over time, perfected the art of making Adigas’-style Open Butter Masala Dosa, if I can say so myself.

The days when I plan to make these dosas, I make a big batch of potato curry – I’ll call it my Multi-Purpose Potato Curry – and refrigerate any leftovers. The curry tastes absolutely fab the next day, I think, and can be used in multiple ways. I’ll outline a few favourite ways of ours to use up this Multi-Purpose Potato Curry, at the end of this post.

First, though, I’ll tell you how to make this curry and the Open Butter Masala Dosa.

How to make Multi-Purpose Potato Curry

Ingredients for the potato curry (makes 15-18 Open Butter Masala Dosas):

  1. 6 medium-sized potatoes
  2. 2 medium-sized onions
  3. 1/4 cup shelled fresh green peas
  4. A 1-inch piece of ginger
  5. 4 green chillies
  6. Salt, to taste
  7. A dash of red chilli powder
  8. 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  9. Juice of 1 lemon, or to taste
  10. 1 tablespoon oil
  11. 1 teaspoon mustard
  12. 2 pinches of asafoetida
  13. A few stalks of fresh coriander


1. Wash the potatoes well, and chop each one into half. Pressure cook potatoes with just enough water to cover them, for 4 whistles. When the pressure reduces completely, open cooker and allow potatoes to cool down fully. Peel and mash them. Keep aside.

2. Slit green chillies length-wise. Chop onions and coriander finely. Peel ginger and grate it finely. Keep aside.

3. Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard and allow it to pop. Add asafoetida and let it stay in for a couple of seconds.

4. Add chopped onions, peas and ginger to the pan. Cook on medium heat till onions begin to brown.

5. Now, add mashed potatoes, green chillies, salt to taste, red chilli powder, turmeric powder and 1 cup water. Mix well. Cook on medium flame for a couple of minutes, adding a, little more water if needed. Ensure that all ingredients are well incorporated together. The mixture should not be too thick, but not too watery either. Adjust seasonings, if needed. Switch off gas.

6. Add lemon juice and chopped coriander. Mix well.


  1. Skip the lemon juice if you want to, but I wouldn’t personally suggest that. The lemon juice adds a whole lot of flavour to the potato curry, and my family likes it that way.
  2. Steamed carrot pieces and curry leaves are a couple of things that are commonly added to the potato curry. You can even add other steamed veggies like beans and sweet corn, for a more interesting version of the curry. I usually avoid these additions, and like to keep the potato curry basic and simple.

How to make Open Butter Masala Dosa


  1. Dosa batter, as needed
  2. Multi-purpose potato curry (recipe above), as needed
  3. Thengai podi, as needed
  4. Grated carrot (medium thick), as needed
  5. Salted butter, as needed
  6. Finely chopped coriander, as needed
  7. Oil, as needed to cook the dosas


  1. Get a dosa pan nice and hot, till droplets of water dance on it. Then, lower the flame to medium.
  2. Pour a ladle and a half of dosa batter in the centre of the pan. Spread it out just a bit – you should make a slightly thick dosa, and not a very thin one.
  3. Spread a little oil around the dosa. Cover the dosa with a plate, and cook on medium flame till slightly crisp and brown on the underside. Make sure the dosa doesn’t get burnt.
  4. Flip over to the other side. Cook the dosa on the other side till it begins to brown.
  5. Transfer the cooked dosa to a serving plate – the crisp, brown side down. Spread a generous amount of thengai podi evenly over the dosa, 2-3 tablespoons. Place some multi-purpose potato curry in the centre of the dosa. Top the potato curry with some grated carrot and finely chopped coriander. Place a pat of butter on the side of the potato curry. Serve the Open Butter Masala Dosa immediately.
  6. Prepare all the Open Butter Masala Dosas in a similar fashion.


  1. I use home-made dosa batter to make Open Butter Masala Dosas. For best results, use fresh, well-fermented batter that is not too sour.
  2. I prefer using salted Amul butter in this dosa. You can use unsalted butter instead, if you please.
  3. Click here for the thengai podi recipe, Amma‘s way.
  4. The dosa batter should neither be too thick nor too watery, for best results.

How to use leftover Multi-Purpose Potato Curry

  1. This leftover curry tastes lovely with piping hot rasam and rice, or with curd rice.
  2. The curry can be used to make Masala Dosa, too.
  3. Leftover curry can be used in sandwiches as well. Here’s how to make the sandwiches – a) Spread some spicy green chutney (recipe here) on two slices of bread. b) Place a generous amount of the potato curry on one slice of bread. c) Squeeze some tomato ketchup on top of the potato curry. d) Spread some grated cheese (optional) over the tomato ketchup. e) Close with the other slice of bread. f) Toast both sides of the sandwich on a hot dosa pan, using a little butter. Serve hot.
  4. Any leftover potato curry can be used to make Aloo Frankie. Go here for the detailed recipe.

Did you like the recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!

I hope you will try out this Open Butter Masala Dosa too, and that you will love it as much as we do!


I’m sending this post to Fiesta Friday, co-hosted this week by Ginger @ Ginger & Bread and Juliana @ Foodie On Board.