Rava dhokla or Suji ka Dhokla is a soft, fluffy, steamed savory cake made from rava (suji or semolina or cream of wheat) together with herbs, spices, white sesame seeds and topped with coconut and coriander leaves. For the leavening of the batter, fruit salt (eno) is used. Usually, this recipe is made with curd (yogurt) but here I share a tasty vegan recipe made with lemon juice.
About This Rava Dhokla
This recipe I learned when I was working in a school. The teacher colleagues were discussing on how to make this recipe of rava dhokla. When they were talking, my mind was registering all the details of this dish.
When I went home, I told my mom the whole method and she made it the very next day. It was hit in our home and till today mom makes rava dhokla often. The recipe which we would make used curd (yogurt) or buttermilk.
But this suji ka dhokla recipe is made with lemon juice and water. This combination of lemon juice and water works like a charm. You will not notice any difference in the taste of the rava dhokla made with yogurt and this one.
This is an easy, quick and delicious dhokla variety and does not require fermentation. I have steamed the suji dhokla in an electric cooker. A dhokla steamer or even a stovetop pressure cooker or Instant pot or a saucepan also works well for steaming. You can also make it in a microwave.
I suggest using eno or fruit salt to make the batter airy and light. I don’t add baking soda as a leavening ingredient, since I don’t like the soapy odour of it. However, if you cannot get eno or fruit salt, then use baking soda instead.
This is a quick tasty snack option and goes best with coriander chutney or papaya sambharo or mint-coriander chutney or mint chutney or any green chutney of your choice.
How to make Rava Dhokla
1. In a mixing bowl take the below-mentioned ingredients and mix them thoroughly with a spoon.
- 1 cup rava/semolina (use fine variety of suji and not the coarser variety)
- ginger-chili paste (½ inch ginger + 1 green chili – crushed and made into a paste in a mortar-pestle)
- 1 tablespoon or 1.25 tablespoon lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- salt as required
- ½ cup water or as required.
Don’t add the fruit salt (eno) at this step. Keep aside for 15 to 20 minutes. The batter has to be slightly thicker than the Idli Batter.
NOTE 1: Don’t make the batter thin or very thick. As this will change the texture of the suji dhokla.
NOTE 2: Keep in mind that depending on the texture of your rava, you may need to add more water.
2. While the batter is resting and before you add eno to the batter, prepare your pans for steaming. First grease a steaming shallow pan with oil and set aside.
Next in a pot or a saucepan take 2 cups of water. Place a small trivet in the saucepan inside the water. Bring this water to a gentle boil on medium heat.
Then add 1 teaspoon eno or fruit salt. The addition of eno helps in leavening the batter and gives a soft fluffy texture to the suji dhokla.
3. Stir briskly and be quick to mix. Make sure the fruit salt is distributed evenly in the batter. However, don’t overdo the mixing as you don’t want the air bubbles to escape from the batter.
4. Quickly pour the batter into the prepared greased pan. So before you make the batter grease a steaming pan very well with oil as I have mentioned above.
Steaming Suji Ka Dhokla
5. Spread the batter in the pan with a spoon. Then shake the pan to even out the batter. Place the pan on the trivet on the saucepan.
You can steam the rava dhokla mixture using a stovetop pressure cooker, an electric rice cooker or the Instant Pot.
6. Cover the saucepan or pan or steamer with a lid and steam for approx 15 to 20 minutes. I used an electric steamer and steamed it for exactly 20 minutes.
Check with a toothpick to see the doneness and if the toothpick comes out clean and there is no sticky batter on it, then the rava dhokla is steamed well. Remove and allow to cool for 5 to 6 minutes.
7. Here you have 2 options. You can add the tempering mixture directly to the steamed pan containing the rava dhokla.
Or unmould the rava dhokla carefully on a serving plate and then slice and temper the slices. You can use any of the methods.
To prepare tempering for dhokla, heat oil in a small pan. You can use peanut oil or any neutral-flavored oil.
8. First add the mustard seeds. Let them crackle.
9. Then add cumin seeds and allow them to splutter. Then add the asafoetida (hing), white sesame seeds and curry leaves and fry for some seconds.
Switch off the heat. Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of water to the tempering. Be careful as the oil is hot and adding water would create a splurge. So add the water carefully and from a safe distance.
10. Pour the tempering mixture evenly over the sooji dhokla.
11. Top with some chopped coriander leaves or freshly grated coconut. Slice and serve warm or cool with a side chutney like green chutney or mint chutney or papapa chutney.
It makes for a light and tasty evening snack. It can also be packed as a snack in a tiffin box for kids.
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Rava Dhokla | Suji ka Dhokla
- 1 cup rava or suji or semolina or cream of wheat – use finer variety
- ½ inch ginger + 1 green chili – crushed and made into a paste in a mortar-pestle
- ½ cup water or add as required
- 1 teaspoon oil
- ½ teaspoon sugar or add as per taste
- 1 pinch turmeric powder
- 1 to 1.25 tablespoons lemon juice – from 1 medium sized lemon
- 1 teaspoon eno (fruit salt) or baking soda
- salt as required
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
- 8 to 10 curry leaves
- 1 pinch of asafoetida (hing)
- 2 to 3 tablespoons water
- ½ tablespoon oil
- 2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves (cilantro)
- 1 to 2 tablespoons fresh grated coconut – optional
- Mix all the ingredients mentioned under the list 'Main ingredients' except for the fruit salt.
- The batter has to be slightly thicker than the idli batter. The batter should not be thin or very thick.
- Keep aside for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile add 2 cups water in a steamer pan or saucepan. Also place a small trivet inside the water before you begin to heat it. Let the water come to a gentle boil on medium heat.
- Grease a pan with oil.
- Add the eno to the batter and stir briskly. Don't overdo the mixing as you don't want the air bubbles to escape.
- Quickly pour the batter in the prepared greased pan.
- Spread evenly and shake the pan to even out the batter.
Steaming rava dhokla
- Keep the pan with the batter in the steamer or sauce pan on top of the trivet.
- Cover the steamer or sauce pan with a lid and steam for about 15 to 20 minutes on medium heat.
- I used an electric steamer and steamed for exact 20 minutes.
- Check with a toothpick to see the doneness and if the toothpick comes out clean without any batter particles sticking to it, then the suji dhokla is steamed well.
- Remove and allow to cool for 5 to 6 minutes.
- You can temper directly or unmould the rava dhokla carefully in a serving plate and then slice and then temper it.
- Heat oil in a small pan. First add the mustard seeds. Let them crackle first.
- Then add cumin seeds and allow to crackle them.
- Add the asafoetida (hing), white sesame seeds and curry leaves and fry for some seconds.
- Switch off the heat. Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of water in the tempering.
- Be careful as the oil is hot and adding water would create a splurge. So add the water carefully and from a safe distance.
- Pour the tempering mixture evenly over the rava dhokla.
- Top with some chopped coriander leaves or freshly grated coconut.
- Slice and serve suji ka dhokla warm or cool with an accompanying chutney of your choice like mint chutney or green chutney or cilantro chutney. It can also be packed in lunch box as a snack.
- Use the fine variety of suji or rava and not the coarser variety.
- The batter is slightly thicker than the idli batter. But don’t make it very thick as this will make the sooji dhokla have a dense or chewy texture. Also don’t make it very thin.
- Instead of eno you can use baking soda. But 1 teaspoon of baking soda would give a lot of its soapy odour in the dish. So I would suggest adding ½ teaspoon of baking soda. Note that this much amount also will give some soapy odour. So according to your preferences, you can even add ¼ to ⅓ teaspoon of baking soda.
- The recipe can be scaled to make a bigger batch for gettogether or parties.
Nutrition Info (Approximate Values)
This Rava Dhokla post from the blog archives first published in September 2013 has been updated and republished on August 2021.