Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Monday, February 7th - Dosa - Mission - Mission Must!! Yummoriffic!

Bhatura - Puffy Wheat Bread
We got together with some of our friends in the Mission after our first full day in San Francisco.  S, N's wife won't be able to join us in Tahoe so we wanted to make sure to spend time with her.  A volunteered to find us a place that could accomodate us all.  Luckily Monday's are alot easier to negotiate bigger tables.  Dosa normally doesn't accept groups larger than 6 or so and on weekends, it's not unusual for there to be a queue at the door.

Channa - Stew of Chick Peas MMMMM
N and S came the first week they opened and they waited 2 hours.  I personally would have walked around the corner for a 3$ Burrito but they said it was worth the wait! 

Dahi Papadi Chaat
Dahi Vada
A and R are from India though I'm not certain if they are from the South where Dosa's originate.  The appetisers and 'street' food starters are pretty common everywhere.  We ordered a few to share:  Dahi Papadi Chaat and Dahi Vada.  And for the first time, were told how to actually eat them.  I was thrilled.  We'd often seen these puffy little pockets in the Dahi Papadi Chaat, bite-sized flat crispy bread, potatoes, spiced organic yogurt, tamarind and mint-cilantro chutneys. Before but had no idea as to the proper way of eating them. You are meant to take one of the little puffs and poke a small hole in the top with your finger (which we shall all assume is already immaculately clean). Fill it with the vegetables and sauces that accompany them on the plate and then pop it whole into your mouth.  Watch out for the green Chile sauce.  It's got a serious kick.  The Vada were little Lentil Dumplings with Yogurt.  So goooood!

We actually put a good dent into the entire menu. We ordered at least half the Dosa's on the menu.  Dosa's are thin, crepe like pancakes, typically made of Lentil flour, filled with a variety of vegetables, cheeses or meats.  They do come from Rice and Wheat as well but normally, the menu would specify if they were like in the case of the Rava Masala Dosa at this restaurant.

Dangerously Spicy Mango Habanero Dosa, wooooo!
We also shared a Channa Bhatura which is my favourite vegetarian Chick Pea Masala with Vegan Poori.  It's that gigantic puffy bread you see at the top of the post.  It was the size of a dodge ball and served piping hot.  Carefully poke a hole at the top with a clean knife,since it's for sharing, to let the steam out. Tear apart and eat with the Chick Peas.

As a concession to our Omnivorous mates at the table, we ordered a Tamil Lamb Curry.  It was a thick stew of large chunks of Lamb.  Not too spicy.

We shared the following Dosa. I would have all of them again except maybe the Spring which I though was a bit run of the mill with the Pea & Carrot veg mix inside :

Masala  Dosa:  classic dosa filled with creamy spiced potatoes, onions, and cashew nuts (masala)
Habanero-Mango Masala: (Warning: very intense heat!) Masala dosa layered with spread of spicy habanero chutney
Rava Masala A wispy dosa made of semolina and wheat, served with spiced Indian potatoes, onions and cashews
Paneer and Peas Dosa filled with spiced and shredded farmer’s cheese, lightly grilled, peas and cilantro
Spring Masala dosa combined with fresh vegetables including peas, carrots, cabbage and red onion

My favourites with both the Dahi's and the Paneer and the Rava Dosa's.  Please Please Please heed the warning about the Mango Habanero Dosa.  They ain't kidding.  It is killer.  There were at least 3 of us at the table with stomach's of steel that agreed we could not have ordered that one alone nor even eaten more than the 1/5th we did. I say 1/5th because some were to fearful to even try when we steelier ones started to weep.

Cost: $$$-$$$$
Service: informative, helpful, cautioned us on an over order, which I love!
Ambiance: Cozy, stylish but not pretentious
Wine List: Decent

(415) 642-3672
995 Valencia St
San Francisco, CA 94110
Mission District

Dosa on Urbanspoon

(Bear in mind I normally top out @ 6/7, have never given a 7.  Still waiting :^)


2 Leave a / Read COMMENTs:

Tiffany said...

Channa is my favorite Indian dish! This restaurant seems like a must try!

The Chef Doc said...

I've been wanting to try Dosa's ever since I saw it on The Best Thing I Ever Ate...! It looks absolutely scrumptious! I'm glad you all had a lovely time :-)