Leafy thin - Paan Pole

This post was originally written in October 2006. Yes, that's how long overdue it is; but I have a valid reason for my procrastination - everytime I made these dosas, I forgot to measure how much water I added to the batter.

Sure I could have used the generic description of 'a flowing consistency', but how useful is that if you are trying a recipe for the first time? So this time I wrote a reminder to myself and stuck it on the burner the night before. And that's how this post finally saw the light of day.

I think the name 'paan pole' is an allusion to how thin these dosas are (paan = leaf). Its plus point - no fermentation required; its negative point - the batter, what else? I speak from experience when I say it's really easy to mess the batter up!

But don't let such talk scare you. They are worth a little sweat - as soft as a fine saree and equally comforting. Paan pole and chutney/ jaggery is a weekly affair at my in laws' home. It is a treat to watch my mother in law dish them out with perfection (I am nowhere close). However my favorite accompaniment to paan pole remains a spicy chicken curry - believe me it is a match made in heaven!


PAAN POLE (Thin Dosa)
(makes 6)
1/2 cup short grain rice
1/4 cup grated coconut
salt to taste
oil for frying

Soak rice in enough water to cover (1 1/2 cups) overnight or for a minimum of 4 hours. Wash in 2-3 changes of water. Then grind to a fine paste along with coconut and salt, gradually adding about 1 cup of water.

Remove to a mixing bowl and add water to get a very runny batter, about 1/3 cup. Mix well. The batter should have a few bubbles on top and the consistency should be that of buttermilk.

Heat a non stick skillet/ frying pan with a teaspoon of oil. Drop half a ladleful of batter into the centre of the pan. Lift pan and rotate gently so batter spreads into a thin circle (look at edges in photo).

Cover and cook for half a minute (on moderate heat). Fold twice and serve hot - they are best eaten fresh off the pan. Serve with chutney for breakfast or spicy chicken/ vegetarian curry for dinner.
(Remember to stir the batter everytime)



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh my God! Ashwini,

This looks amamzing and yummy. I am a konkani often lurking around your blogs.. I love your posts.. and I am salivating looking at the paan polo.. an easier American shortcut I learned here is to mix rice powder with diluted cocnut milk.. it's not as yummy as the original, but hey when you want it instantly, it's a good way..


4:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That is something totally new to me. How come keralites didn't figure this out? Konkanis has been keeping this away from us for too long. Thank God this post saw daylight!
I think it would go well with some chicken stew. Hmmm....

4:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

neer dosa at mahesh restaurant in bombay. your post brought back good memories.

- bee

5:37 PM  
Blogger Swapna said...

Thanks for the recipe. I love neer dosas. My college friend used to get them in her dabba and we used to finish them.Later, I had these dosas in my office canteen. And now, thanks to you, I can have them at home:-)

6:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My MIL cooks them and I really relish it.
Thanxs for sharing

6:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Aah ... Paan pole - the magic word that brings any blog lurker out of the closet. It felt so nostalgic to read the word "paan pole" that I just had to leave a comment. My mum made these back home usually for breakfast - with a filling of grated coconut, sugar and crushed cardamom. Ofcourse the savory versions were served with the much touted "chicken roce" curry ... Yummy !

What a lovely blog you have Ashwini! Classic recipes and elegant pictures...An absolute pleasure to lurk around :)


9:33 PM  
Blogger Manasi said...

Lovely!!! I shall try it out on a week end!! Thanx.
BTW.. how do u get such perfect snaps?? Amazing!!

10:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How did you knwo I was asking around for this recipe!!!!???? :D :D

I think its also called as neer dosa right!!!!

Thanks girl!!!!!! I am gonna make them soon. :)

11:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ahwini, these look so deli-cious and deli-cate! The picture makes me want to soak the rise right now!

11:57 PM  
Blogger Anjali Koli said...

Ashwini those look divine. bee is right it is also known as neer dosa. I learnt it from a Shetty lady. Another theory goes like this since the batter is watery it is called paan pole, paan as in pani. SriNidhi too is doing the right thing in Thal too they are made using just rice flour and water mostly for BF with previous nights curry.

12:19 AM  
Blogger FH said...

OMG!! Ashwini,these are sooo white and delicate!!I thick we call it Neer(water) dosa in B'lore but I have never seen this white though!Beautiful!!!Thanks for recipe.

8:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Ashwini,

The paan pole looks sooo delicious! I'm very excited about this post -- I'm one of those 'trying for the first time' on so many of these dosas, so the amounts are very helpful to me :):)

Thanks so much for sharing this. I can't wait to try!

9:01 AM  
Blogger Mythreyee said...

excellent dosas. Will sure try this one. thanks for sharing.

11:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The dosas look so pretty, like angels! And no fermentation needed? Thats great. I make a similar appam, but I add a little yeast and let the batter rise for a few hours. I thought it wouldn't work otherwise. I will try this out, ashwini.

1:12 PM  
Blogger Manjula said...

makka poTTa book jatta...makka pan poLe jai :((
Pan pole looks soo heavenly. Me too love this dish with Chicken curry. We used to eat this with goDDa ravo and now with Maple syrup.

1:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe you, I'm sure this is a taste of heaven, looks soft and delicious!

2:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ashwini - the paan polo looks delicious. I have never tried this before, but would love to make it over the weekend. Thanks!

3:17 PM  
Blogger Suma Gandlur said...

I need to try them. Once I tried neer dose recipe from some website and they were not a success.From then onwards, I never even thought about them. They look beautiful.

3:52 PM  
Blogger Shah cooks said...

is this what is also called neerdosa? i used to love having these with sukka chicken in bombay. Thanks a lot Ashwini!love you for this.

6:13 PM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Hi Srinidhi, hmmm trust paanpolo to bring a Konkani out of lurk mode :-) Thats a quick fix idea, thanks.

Gini - haha! It goes awesomely with chicken curry/ stew. In fact the Shettys/ Bunt have a similar dosa called neer (water) dosa that they eat with their chicken curry.

Bee - you are from Bombay???? Yaaayyy :-D I have had amazing meals at Mahesh Lunch Home - prawn ghassi, neer dosa, kori rotti...its divine food isnt it?

Swapna - no problem. You know I had a Shetty friend too and whenever she would invite us to lunch I would literally dance with joy :-)

Sushma - thanks

JM - thanks for your kind words. And for coming out of lurkdom :-)

Manasi - thanks. And this is in no way a perfect picture...

Coffee, Anjali, Asha - yes, neer dosas are similar. The excess water in both gives the dosas this spongy texture and look. Let me know how you like it.

Anita - go ahead soak now! Even 3 hours is fine if you are in a hurry :-)

Linda - I am glad you want to try the recipe. Let me know if they turn out well.

Mythreyee, Monisha - thanks

Manjula - haang yo, hav tuk baneyn dita :-)

RP - angels, so cute. Are appams similar?

Mandira, Suma - let me know how they turn out

6:28 PM  
Blogger Seema Bhat said...

Oh my god these paan pole are just picture perfect. How do you manage to take such beautiful pictures gal? Which camera do you use?
Paan pole is a lot simillar to our Neer Dosa. The difference being just the addition of coconut.
Oh my god!!! I am still drooling over the picture. They look so soft and fluffy. Am gonna try it your way next time.
Thanx for sharing

6:42 PM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Shaheen - yep these are similar though I am not sure if neer dosa has coconut.

Seema - thanks. So you don't add coconut to neer dosa? That must make them more difficult. Do share your recipe with us. Thanks for the compliment on the photo - I use a Nikon. Usually pics turn out great if there is good light.

6:50 PM  
Blogger Sri said...

Oh my Ashwini...they really so thin...when you asked to look up the edges to see the thickness that's when i saw it god they are so have to try it.Looks beautiful too...never had it before.
Thanks for sharing this recipe.

Have a wonderful V. day.

9:56 PM  
Blogger HAREKRISHNAJI said...

I do believe you it is made in heaven,but we do not have to go all the way to heaven, one's wife has to just walk upto kitchen.

In Mumbai, in south Indian Restaurant. the dish called Paan li is somewhat different, It's some sort of sweet, I do not remeber exactly, I think made out of coconut, wrapped in Paa.

2:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow!! Thats something easy and nice. Happy Valentine's Day. Cheers!!Jessica

3:41 AM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Sri, I know the edges are easy to miss...let me know how they turn out.

HKji - or one could make them for oneself from this recipe :-D
Paan pole is traditionally eaten with jaggery syrup.

Jessica - thanks

9:37 AM  
Blogger Manjula said...

You got voted the best!
Congrats on being the Best Food blog in the Indibloggies list.

10:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lovely poles, Ashwini! Very nice of you to say exact measure of water to be used for diluting. Helps starters very much.BTW thanks for the recipe.

10:54 AM  
Blogger Mishmash ! said...

Thanks for sharing this recipe; I'm gonna try for sure; will let u know how it came out!


12:16 PM  
Blogger Lady Mcbeth said...

The paan poles look yummilicous!

12:46 PM  
Blogger ServesYouRight said...

ooooh - fabulous! Wonderful recipe and wonderful picture :-)


2:01 PM  
Blogger Aditi said...

They look so beautiful Ashu Didi!All white and fluffy. And pls tell me that's lasun-chatni next to it.Yumm!

3:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Firstly, let me congratulate you on your nomination to the Indibloggies!

And those poles are alluring..:)..the best part - no fermentation. Lovely picture!

10:24 PM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Manjula, Sailu - thanks so much for your wishes

Lakshmiammal, Mishmash, Lady Mcbeth (love your name btw), Smita - thanks

Aditi - Yep the very same - lasnichi chutney :-)

8:58 AM  
Blogger author said...

hey ashwini,
I love neer dosa,my college friend used to get these in her tiffin with green rock!

10:29 AM  
Blogger author said...

btw the neer dosa is featured in sanjeev kapoors menu of the week

4:00 PM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Thanks Surpiya. Menu of the week huh? that on his web site? I will check it out.

4:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Ashwini,
Your posts are amazing.This recipe seems to be so easy and as said by everyone, it would definitely go well with chicken & egg curry!
Im definitly gonna try this!!
Also by any chance have you done pharmacy as i one of my senior's name was Ashwini(shenoy) & was konkani.


5:23 PM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Dhanya - thanks. The recipe is easy, but making the dosas can be a bit difficult due to the watery batter. Just be sure to use non stick.
My answer would depend on whether you liked her :-) Kidding...I am a commerce grad.

5:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Ashwini,
I made Paan pole from your recipe formula. As per your instruction, i made it in appam chatti. So it came out without sticking. It was mind blowing!
About my senior i wished you were the same as she was sweet...bother not..
Also by seeing u guys im inspired as i always wished for. The main intention is to kill time rather. Being a guru i wish to get some help for building up. I dont know how to list u all into my blogroll. Kindly help!Its

4:45 PM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

You are a woman of your word! Glad you liked paan pole Dhanya...have mailed you the instructions on blog rolls

9:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi your paanpoli looks so appetising.Can you pls tell me what is short grain rice?Is it sona masoori?Thanks Vidhi

8:14 PM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Hi Vidhi, yes sona masuri rice is short grain; basically any variety except basmati. Let me know how you like paan pole

6:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Ashwini,

Paan polo tasted great, i have tried it once before, got messed up because of amount of water i added, you sure are right, its very easy to mess it up. This time i was happy to see amount of water to be added in recipe. Thanks, it was delicious.

1:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hello ashwini.

i never imagined ,ill see the pole in a blog,and that too of the konkan side!
i thought this dish is unique to my native place is which is in the northmost part of kerala....
I have been having this,since my childhood..right in my granmas kithchen...
i was surprised to learn that its a konkan dish...
i wonder where she learnt it from,and all the others at my native..
i better ask her..
this pole,ull only find in this particular place in kerala..and no where else really...


2:28 PM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Hi Safia thanks for writing in. So you grew up on paan pole huh? Lucky you!! There is a small community of Konkani people settled in Kerala...maybe that could be the link?

2:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a mangalorean and love ur pictures of pan pole. Did u grind the rice in the wet stone grinder (ultra) or summet grinder. Could u give me the exact measurements of water and rice if u can ? I tried a couple of times but it comes out very thick and slippery on one side. Which brand of sona masoori u use ? I will really appreciate ur feedback and may God bless u for having a good heart to share ur wonderful receipes.

8:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can this be made using rice flour and coconut milk?

10:01 AM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Anon, thanks for your kind words. I have a very unreliable American blender, no wet grinders or sumeet. It takes a long time to get the batter well ground on blenders. Leave the motor running and go for a walk ;-)
No such problem if you have a good Indian style mixie though. Grind batter that you shouldnt be able to feel any rice grains. Just a little rough texture to the watery batter.
I use Priya sona masuri available at the local grocery store.
Re: the water measurements - I have given the cup measures used widely here (you will get plastic cup & tablespoon measures in any store like Target etc. usually in the baking section. See -
If the first dosa turns out to be thick add a little more water to the batter, stir and try. Also don't pour too much batter on the pan. Put less, rotate pan and let it spread. If it doesnt spread into a full circle, pour a little more to and rotate again. I hope this helps. Good luck!!

Gini - I haven't tried with rice flour honestly. Though the concept is the same the dosas will have a very different texture. I use frozen grated coconut but I wouldn't recommend coconut milk. Let me know how it works

1:52 PM  
Blogger Raaga said...

My favourite. I have been eating it with pitti chitni toop for as long as I can remember. Of late, though, I do eat it with green coconut chitni.

Just landed here for the first time. I just started a food blog myself. And there are a host of amchi recipes there. I also plan to add non amchi stuff. :)

1:14 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

You could also try adding half an onion to the ingredients. Smells heavenly and tastes equally good too!


9:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I want to know where did u buy the appam chatti and what it is the English term used for the pan ?


11:50 AM  
Blogger Raki said...

Hi Ashwini,

Really very thoughtful of you to put in the correct measurements of water to be added. Wonderful effort and beautiful pictures.... you are a good cook :o)

6:10 PM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Anon I dont have an appam chatti. This dosa is made in a regular tawa with raised edges.

Raki - thanks for your lovely words.

10:57 AM  
Blogger Dibs said...

So simple yet so difficult! I miss my mangalorean friend who could make these so well! I used to call them lace handkerchiefs! Came here from SWC round up on Taste of Mysore.

7:32 AM  
Blogger Ashwini said...

Thanks Dibs, and welcome to FFT.

11:57 AM  
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8:45 PM  

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