Savory cake for a change


One weekend morning I was looking into my pantry thinking of putting together a breakfast. I grabbed some chickpea flour (garbanzo bean flour or gram flour) and made this dish for a hearty breakfast. This has been sitting in my draft for quite some time and I am posting it today. Read very carefully till the end and you’ll know why it got its name :)


Chick pea flour – 1.25 cups
Salt- to taste
Sugar- one pinch
Grated ginger- 1 tsp
Finely chopped green chilies- 1 whole chili
Baking soda- 1/2 tsp
Sesame oil- 2 tbsp and another 1 tbsp
Water- 2 cups(approx).

For the topping:
Curry leaves- 1 handful
Cilantro – one handful
Green chilies-2
Salt- to taste
Lemon rounds- to garnish


Sift chickpea flour and baking soda together with salt and sugar. Add water to this and keep whisking to avoid any lumps. The batter has to be thick like a pancake better/idli batter.

Add grated ginger, chopped green chilies and 2 table spoons of  sesame oil to this flour mixture. Let is sit aside for 10 minutes.

Grease a broad,wide vessel (not tall vessel) with one table spoon of sesame oil. Pour the garbanzo flour mixture into it and steam it in a pressure cooker for 15-17 minutes. Check if it is done by inserting a fork into it, if the fork comes out clean, the cake has steamed well. Let it cool for a minute and slowly go around the edges with a knife. Invert it on to a plate.

The topping:

Grind the curry leaves, coriander leaves, salt, green chilies together into a thick paste. Add about 3 table spoon of water to this paste so that it is spreadable.


Spread the cilantro paste on top of the cake. Garnish with cilantro leaves and lemon wedges.
Slice and serve with khatta-meeta chutney.

If you are wondering, yes, it is dhokla! I just wanted to try it this way to see if I can add some more flavor and moistness to the dhokla. And this version was a change from the usual dhokla we make that I thought of building another layer with some other chutneys the next time.

I added plain water, but you can also add yogurt instead of water or a mixture of water and yogurt.


And I am sending my savory cake for a change to Divya’s show me your cake event.

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10 Comments to “Savory cake for a change”

  1. Linda says:

    As soon as I saw besan I was hoping it was dhokla — a fav! Looks beautiful with the lemon and cilantro garnish :)

  2. Nice version of dhokla,very healthy and delicious…

  3. indosungod says:

    Who would so no to this breakfast? Delicious.

  4. simplyfood says:

    Lovely dhokla , a little bit like khaman dhokla,Next time try and sandwich the chutney in between two layers that works well. :)

  5. Sra says:

    When I saw this title, I wondered what it would be. I’ve been wondering if there are any savoury cakes in the Western repertoire – must explore that! Your pic reminds me of a bright, sunny garden. Happy New Year!

  6. Sayantani says:

    love dhoklas of any kind. its yum and healthy at the same time. love it!

  7. Cham says:

    I didn’t try dokla at home- the color is vibrant :)

  8. Sheetal says:

    Ah, savory and so dhokla-like! An absolute hit … love it!

  9. ruchikacook says:

    Thank you Linda. I knew you’d guess that.

    Thanks Sushma and ISG..It was spicy and yummy.

    I had had enough fruit cakes and pies last week that I thought why not make this and call it savory cake. But Sra, may be we have the pav or masala buns but spicy cake..??!! Will experiment more..Happy New Year to you too.

    Thanks Sayantani and sheetal. colorful and bright as it can get cham :)

  10. K says:


    How many whistles should it be steamed in the pressure cooker?


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