Set Dosa with Vegetable Saagu (curry) & Ginger Chutney

'Set Dosa' was a name coined by restaurateurs long ago in Karnataka when dosas were served more than one per plate. Initially hotels served 4 small dosas in one plate with chutney and Sambar or Saagu (Curry/Korma). Since the dosas were served in sets of two the name “Set Dosa” came into being. Customers who couldn’t consume all 4 dosas began to order “Half Set” which was two dosas and hence the cost of the dish also was halved. More and more people began to order half set rather than full plate, hence restaurateurs decided to change the number of dosas to 3. The customers were now left with no choice but to order a full plate with three dosas rather than half plate with only two dosas. Till date a plate of Set Dosa ordered in any restaurant across Karnataka, consists of 3 dosas.

Set Dosa is a popular variety of dosa in Mysore and Bangalore. It’s easy to make at home.

Set Dosa

1 Portion Thick Poha (Avvalakki)

4 Portion Rice (Sona Masoori)

1 Portion thick plain Yoghurt (Curd)

1 tsp Fenugreek (Methi) seeds


Soak poha, rice and methi seeds overnight. Grind to a fine smooth paste the next day using as less water as possible. Mix batter with salt and yoghurt and let ferment overnight. If next day the batter hasn’t risen, then add ½ tsp of Cooking soda.

Heat a non stick pan. Apply oil and then pour two ladles of dosa batter in the centre. If the batter has fermented well, when you batter begins to cook, holes will form on the surface, this is what you are looking for. Cover and let cook till one side is done. Some like it one side cooked while some others prefer to flip the dos and cook it on the other side as well. Suit yourself and do accordingly.

Serve with hot Saagu and Coconut chutney. When I make it at home I prefer to make either Saagu or chutney.

Vegetable Saagu

You will need:

1 potato ( small cubed)
½ cup peas
1 carrot (small cubed)
1 cup green beans (small cut)
6-7 green chillies (slit)
2-3 pods Garlic
2 cloves
1" pc Cinnamon stick
1 tbsp Corriander seeds
½ bunch coriander
2 tbsps fried gram (Hurgadale)
1 cup fresh coconut grated
Mustard seeds
Curry leaves
3 tbsp Oil
Salt to taste

Grind the green chillies, garlic, coconut, fried gram,cloves, cinnamon, coriander seeds and fresh coriander to a thick fine paste. Boil vegetables in lightly salted water, drain and keep aside.

Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds and curry leaves. Add the ground paste and fry for a minute or two. Then add the boiled veggies and mix well. Add salt and bring to a boil.

Serve with Set dosas.

Ginger Chutney

Another good combination with this dosa is Ginger chutney.

You will need:

100 gms Ginger
1 tbsp Fried Gram
½ cup Fresh or dry coconut (grated)
6 Dry red chillies (dry roasted)
½ tsp Tamarind paste
½” pc Jaggery
½ onion chopped
2 tbsp Oil
1 tsp Mustard seeds
¼ Tsp Asafetida (Hing)
Few curry leaves
Salt to taste

Add ginger, fried gram, dry red chillies, tamarind paste, jaggery and coconut in a blender. Make a smooth paste with sufficient water. Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds and when it begins to splutter add the curry leaves and hing. Add chopped onions and fry till soft and translucent. Now add the ground paste and sauté till fragrant and oil leaves the side of the pan.

Serve with your choice of main course…chapathis, dosas or rice.

This chutney stores refrigerated for upto 10 days in an air tight container.

This is my entry to “Think Spice – Think Ginger” hosted by Sunita of Sunita’s World.


  1. Wow looks very yummy,, DELISH!!

  2. I so want to have this now! My tummy is grumbling

  3. bayali neeru baratha ide :) delicious !

  4. Looks great...especially the sagu

  5. I am so drooling....Sagu and chutney yum yum.......

  6. Who can resist Namratha. They are lovely. Viji

  7. I have to try this set dosa...looks soft and yummy!!

  8. I love that well as the bowl in which it is served :-)...thanks Namratha for ending it over.

  9. nammu..i am seriously planning to relocate near ur all that u have made and the bowl in which u seved the chutney is adorable!

  10. Delicious. The dosa looks so good.

  11. i love set dosa with sagoo but never knew the story behind it. thank u:)

  12. Lovely combination.. i have been meaning to try set dosa and saagu for a while.. and the ginger chutney would've paired really well with this. I like the bowl too (the one featuring the chutney).

  13. Love setdosa/sagu. Your pictures are making me drool!

  14. I still remember the set dose I ate in Mysore at a small Brahmin restaurant where my dad used to eat when he was a student!!
    Looks great Namratha, slurp!!
    Happy Thanksgiving girl, see you on Monday!:))

  15. yummmmmmm soft dosas with veggi curry lovely yummyyyyyy deleciousssss any time of the day i just die for that lookss so yummyyyyyy thanks for sharing

  16. Set dosa is famous in Chennai too. Love the vegie curry the ginger chutney.

  17. Oh man.. you reminded me of the good old days.. i used to love that soft fluffy dosa so much!!! used to be regular in the nearest fast food corner just for this!!

    it looks too good nams!! wish you could mail me some :(

  18. Set dosa- never knew how that name came about! Saagu looksvery thick and delicious. The dosas look soft and spongy, Namratha:)

  19. Another yummy post :D I will let you feed me everyday :)

  20. Lovely dosas namrutha! The cut vegeis are looking so cute! I liked the ginger chutney served in star bowl! :) Yummy post!

  21. Thanks to all of you for leaving your lovely comments :) I'm glad all of you liked it!

  22. Thanks for the sahu recipe. I have been looking for it for years.

  23. Thanks for the description and recipe. Even Wikipedia does not have an entry for 'Set Dosa'. I linked this post to a page from a wiki I maintain about my favourite eating places and dishes.

  24. Its a long time since we ate this. I don't know why I stopped making these! I like the saagu combo which is so typical of Karnataka!

  25. days would have rolled by from 2007 to 2012, but still this post is as fresh as today. nice set dosa, saagu and ginger chutney.

    Hema's Adugemane

  26. vegetable curry is too good in taste. Tried with DOSA

  27. Hi ... I had fallen for set dosas since the first time I had it and had been looking for a nice recipe since ages now, and accidentally found this website... Your pictures make the dish look even more yummy ... :) ... I tried this today finally and it turned out to be really nice .. All thanks to you ... the dosas were very soft...
    however, I think I used quite more coconut in the saagu or probably it was not ground well, so its kind of more coconuty in taste ... can this be substituted with coconut milk ?? or else, for 2 people, how much coconut shud be used ?? I used around half a cup.
    Thanks !!

    1. Hi Pratishta, glad it turned out well and you'll enjoyed it. Coconut milk will give it an entirely different taste so I suggest sticking to grated coconut. 1/2 cup coconut for the two of you may have been a lot, use 1/4 cup and grind to a smooth paste with the rest of the ingredients. Hope this helps!


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