A couple of weeks ago, while out with a friend we hadn’t seen in a while, the ole blog came up in the course of our conversation. Turns out, she works for a company who does the promotional material for dc dosa and knew about this event, Dosas for Dummies, for media and bloggers. I’m always on board with trying new things and sharing them with you, so this was perfect.
It was held in the cafe area of the Foggy Bottom Whole Foods, where the dc dosa stand is located. Priya Ammu, the owner of dc dosa, had a table set up for her guests and one with her cook top and ingredients. We sat down and were appetized with Mango Ginger Lassi. the first thing I noticed was that the lassi had a little bit of a kick to it! The ginger and cayenne made this lassi stand out from others I’ve had in the past. This seems to be Priya’s philosophy for everything at the stand. Classic Indian foods with her own little twist.
So what is a dosa? I read up about them before this event, but I had never had them. Dosas are a bit like crepes, originated in South India. They are traditionally made out of rice batter and eaten as a breakfast food served with chutney. Priya saw an opportunity to turn them into more of a meal, by adding fillings to them. Hers are also made out of different types of lentil batters so that they are healthier and stick with you longer. I learned that the recipes for dosas are very home-based with every family having their own. Her recipes come from her mother-in-law, but most of them had her own tweaks. Except for the chutney! Those are made strictly by her MIL’s recipes.
dc dosa has 3 different dosa options, with 3 different filling options, and 3 different chutney options. Priya whipped up all 3 different kinds with all of the toppings and had big bowls of all of the chutneys on the table for us. She started with the Four Lentil Dosa with sautéed cabbage and carrots. She suggested this be eaten with the Cilantro Sesame or Onion Tamarind chutney. Next, was the whole mung lentil dosa with eggplant and sweet potatoes with suggested cilantro sesame or tomato peanut chutney. And finally, she prepared the petite yellow lentil dosa with curried potatoes with a suggested cilantro sesame or tomato peanut chutney.
I loved everything I tried. It was all really delicious and very flavorful. Priya explained to us that she doesn’t use processed ingredients. No curry powder here, just fresh ginger and garlic, red chilies, etc. She explained that this is how people should be eating. Everything on the menu is vegan and gluten-free and they range from about 280-400 calories. This was music to my ears. It may not be apparent from what I blog, but I generally try to watch what I eat. Low-calorie, healthy lunch out options are always welcome. Her passion for dosas and healthy, whole, fresh food was so apparent. It’s clear that she got into this business to share dosas with the world. She hopes that dosas are the next burrito and even shared that her business model is based on Chipotle. She hopes to expand within Whole Foods soon.
- Favorite thing I had: The Four Lentil Dosa with cabbage and carrots. I had a hard time deciding between the tomato peanut or cilantro sesame chutney. While Priya was cooking and we were between dosas, I noticed that everyone at the table was basically just eating the chutney with a fork. “Research!” No, it was just good enough to eat with a fork.
- Most interesting thing I want to try next time: I got to try everything on the menu! But Priya also told us that they don’t mind mixing fillings, so I’ll have to try that. I am excited about the Strawberry and Black Pepper lassi that’s coming up when strawberries are in season.
- How soon I’d go back (tomorrow/next week/next month/special occasions): I’m definitely taking co-workers for lunch there this week. I almost went back for dinner, but couldn’t fit it into my other evening plans.
- Places to go afterward (what’s nearby): I wanted to take a spin around Whole Foods since I was already there but had to get back to work.