Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Besan Cheela - The Vegetarian Omelette!

Besan Cheelas are vegetarian omelettes for breakfast, I learnt about, during my dieting days (Yep, I've had a share of those). But my dieting was more focussed to a new lifestyle eating healthier and better. I've never starved (I can't!) just because I wanted to lose some extra pounds. My body responds beautifully to exercise. And I'm so glad it does.
The first time I read about this, it was in 'Crossword' - a nice bookstore in Pune. I was browsing through the cooking books and found a tiny booklet on healthy breakfasts or fat free breakfasts (Sorry, I forgot the author's name!). This recipe got me curious because I've never heard of a 'besan dosa like thing' until then. I was discussing this with a friend in the office cafetaria and that very day, the cafetaria happened to have 'Vegetarian Omelette' for evening snack. What a coincidence! :) We tried it and liked it, except the Omelette was dripping with oil. I've tried it often since then, it is a very quickie breakfast. And you can use any vegetables you like - tomates, onions, cabbage, carrots, etc. These Omelettes are full of proteins and make a healthy breakfast. But, if you are allergic to besan, stay away from this.


Besan/Gram flour - 1 cup
Onion - 1 finely chopped (Lengthwise or any way, but it should be very fine)
Coriander leaves - a handful (finely chopped)
Hing/Asafoetida - a pinch (optional)
Green chilly - 1 (finely chopped, should not be identifiable)
Cummin seeds - 1/2 tsp (slightly crushed in hand, not pestle and mortar)
Salt to taste
Oil - to make cheelas (less than 1/2 tsp per cheela)
Vegetables of your choice - finely grated (I skipped, since I was in a hurry)

Take the gram flour and break any lumps (Use an egg whisk). Add water and mix it to a thick batter, using the whisk. I use the whisk for everything - from rava dosa batter, pancakes and cheelas and even during the preliminary stages of upmas (SShhhh! Don't tell!). Add in the onions, cummin seeds, hing, coriander leaves, green chillies, salt and finely grated vegetables (Carrots, Cabbage, Tomatoes, Greens, squashes etc - qualify, root vegetables don't.)

Make pancakes in a hot tava/griddle and serve piping hot, with green chutney! Red colored onion/tomato chutney tastes good with this too. (Note: The hing helps in digestion of this proteinaceous pancakes.)

This is my entry for Tony's Curry Mela for this week.

22 comments:

Ashwini said...

Great minds think alike hee hee.

Kay said...

Yep! :) I agree.

Priya said...

AWESOME !!! this should be a feast for ur unborn baby. I bought besan almost a year ago and still it not getting over, how do u know thats its gone bad. Should i throw it away and buy some fresh besan. and can u give some storage tips. hope u dont mind my stupid questions.

Diane said...

This is my favorite weekend breakfast, although I make mine with ghee...
:)

I didn't know it could be made with any kind of veg. I always make mine with tomatos. Thanks for the ideas!

BDSN said...

In the morning I was droolin over Ashwini's cheela pictures and now Iam drooling over yours....Oh guys!!

Annita said...

I was thinking of a quick breakfast tomorrow and now decided this is it..Will let u know the result.
And thanks for ur recipe

Tanuja said...

yummy cheelas i will definetly try this. thanks for the receipe. Kay try some cheelas made from yellow corn flour its good for u and ur baby at this time.

Priya said...

Hi Kay...this looks like a awesome recipe...especially when I was missing Dosa's ...this Dosa look-alike is sure gonna find place in my kitchen.
I am going to have it for a breakfast tomoro even if that means I am going to be late for College ;-)

Kay said...

Thanks Priya! I think that besan would have spoiled by now, you can see the difference in the smell. (one yr at your shelf, there must be sometime it sat on the shelf at the stores too..) Your best bet would be buy fresh. I always store besan/rice flour/all purpose (I try not to usee maida, but sometimes very little for special dishes) etc in the refriegrator, door compartment. Doesnt get spoiled, this way. I also store some home made/ store bought masalas in the same area too. HTH!

Diane, Traditionally it is made with tomatoes, but I sneak in more vegetables ;) try it, It's tasty.

Thanks BDSN, Annita, Tanuja (I'll try with cornflour, when we reach Toronto and let you know how it went, Thanks!) and priya! If you guys try it, let me know how you liked it! It's really super quick. If you have some tomato pickle or some other left over chutney, it becomes a 2-mins breakfast! :)

Kitchenmate said...

Cheela, definitely going to try; tell chelkut that "omelette with veggies", lemme see whether he finds it out???

Priya said...

Hi Kay, I tried them today for breakfast...and they tasted really good...I dint have time for the green chutney...but had them with Ginger pickle that I got from India...and it was a awesome combo...thank u soo much for the superb recipe..!!

Reshma said...

cool!guess what my lunch's going to be today;)

sailu said...

I do make besan dosas (that's what we call them at home) but its been a very long time since I have made them.Maybe I should make them this week.I generally dry roast the besan on low heat for a couple of minutes before I mix in the water or very dilute buttermilk and veggies to make dosas or omelette..:)

Vaishali said...

Hi Kay,
Which Crossword store did you go to? There are many in Pune. I am curious because I am from Pune :)
By the way, they serve this omelette with tomatoes at Udupi restaurants too and they dutifully serve it with some ketchup and two slices of bread, which means that it needs to be eaten like an omelette. Funny, isn't it?
Btw once more, I am at your blog for the first time.

Lera said...

Besan cheela sounds delicious and nutritious..:)

Vineela said...

Hi kay,
U r besan cheelas r looks yummy with green chutney.Let me give a try.
vineela

Kay said...

Oh, Karthi! He'll definitely find out. IT's light and fluffy like an omellete but tastes almost like dosa or the lightest version of pesarattu...

Thanks Priya! :) I'm so glad you liked it. I eat with tomato pickle too and it's yummy.. With a pickle, this dish should be ready in do-minutes ;)

Reshma, How did it go?

Sailu, How nice! Lemme try it next time with roasted besan and also with diluted buttermilk. It's so quick, isn;t it?

Welcome to my blog, Vaishali! I used to frequent the one opposite Jehangir-Apollo hospital. I also liked the one in Pyramyds.
That one about Uduppi hotels was very funny! LOL :) Imagine a dosa or a besan crepe inside two slices of bread!

Thanks Lera and Saltnpepper! Do tell how it went! :)

Vaishali said...

Hi Kay,
I made these with grated cabbage for breakfast today. Yum!

Kay said...

Thanks Vaishali! I'm glad you liked it! :)

Anonymous said...

Very nice Recipe of Besan Cheela, But if u want to make it more healthy go to http://creativecooking.wordpress.com/
One of my friends told me about this site and I tried them as well. They r really easy and healthy...

ShrutiWrites said...

Hi Kay,

You might be a little surprised to see a comment on such an old post. But I just wanted to, first, thank you for putting up the recipe of my fav breakfast dish, and secondly, let you know that i have linked your page to my blog http://parntingtoday.blogspot.com/2009/06/mondegreen-and-imagination.html
Hope it's OK by you.

Kay said...

Thanks Anon!

Sure, Shruthi! Totally ok with me.