Best Dosa Tawa

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Last Updated: April 18, 2018

Want the perfect crisp dosa everytime? The pan matters ! Read our best dosa tawa / Flat Griddle buying guide to understand the which pans are worth your money.

After over 50 hours of research and over three months of making dosa’s, uttapam, crepes and frying eggs and bacon – we recommend going for the Futura Non-Stick Tawa, 28cm. It offers a slick nonstick coating, good heat distribution, and excellent maneuverability and comfort. For those who wish to avoid non-stick coatings, want induction and oven compatibility and don’t mind shelling almost double the money, we recommend going for the Lodge Pre seasoned Cast Iron Tawa Pan. Cast Irons offer great heat retention and they also develop a natural nonstick coating over time if you treat them correctly.

The Best Dosa Tawa

1. Futura Non-Stick Tawa, 28cm

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We picked this Tawa because of the consistently good Dosas it gave us across three months of testing.  Made of heavy-gauge, aluminium material, this tawa is remarkably durable with consistent heat distribution for uniform results. Its 4.88mm thick which is more than most tawas available, and is highly rated by users. However it has a non-induction base and works only on traditional gas flame. We got perfect Dosas overtime without any hassles.

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2. Lodge Logic Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Tawa Pan – 10.5-Inch

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This round cast iron griddle pan is the perfect tool for cooking Dosas, pizza or crepes or even an egg. The slightly raised edges keep oil, batter and other ingredients neatly contained. Cast iron can be used on a stovetop, on induction in an oven or over a campfire. This Cast Iron pan is made in the USA, has fantastic heat retention and lasts forever. The only downsides are that they are heavy and maintaining the seasoning requires effort.

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If you have ever been shopping for Pots and Pans, its easy to get overwhelmed by the sheer choices out there. From stainless steel to anodised aluminium to ceramic – there are different materials at different price points. Its tempting to buy one set of non-stick cookware and stick to it. However depending on the type of cook you are, this may not be the right approach.

As a rule, you should purchase the best quality that you can afford. It will be well worth it in the long run. Otherwise, you will find yourself replacing them in a short time.

First, it’s important to understand the different metals and surfaces that pans are made from and how they can affect what you are cooking. The thickness of the metal is important, as pans with a thicker bottom will heat more evenly. Different kinds of metal have different conductivity– in other words, the speed that heat is dispersed through the pan and to your food.

What are the different materials in Dosa Tawa’s and which one should I look at ? 

Most pans are made out of the following materials.

Aluminum: Although aluminum is ideal for its light weight and heat-conduction properties, it isn’t good as a stand-alone material. Aluminum works well for sautéing and frying foods because if its heat responsiveness. The drawback of aluminum is that it reacts to acidic and alkaline foods, causing it to corrode and affect the taste of the food being cooked. Aluminum is generally used as a core heat conductor, or coated with stainless steel or an anodized coating to protect the food.

Anodized aluminum: Anodizing is the process of dipping aluminum in an electrolyte bath and running an electric current through metal to protect it from corrosion. The result is a dark gray surface that’s harder and noncorrosive. It is a good conductor of heat and the special finish makes it stick-resistant.

Non-stick coatings: These pots and pans have had a coating applied to them that prevents food from sticking and makes clean up easier. The non-stick surface is really an advantage when cooking some foods, such as omelettes, and when reheating sticky foods, such as rice. These pans are great for cooking low-fat meals because they require less oils. Be careful not to use any metal utensils or rough sponges on non-stick pans because the coating scratches very easily.

Cast iron: Pans made of cast iron offer great heat retention. They also develop a natural nonstick coating over time if you treat them correctly. It heats slowly but once it is hot, it holds the heat well. This makes it good for deep frying and slow-cooking.But cast iron is very heavy, a poor conductor of heat, and potentially a hassle to care for. They are quite heavy and will break easily if dropped (your floor would probably break too!)

So how did we go about picking the best pan ? 

Based on our research, the most important features that were requested in a dosa tawa was non – stick, even heating and ability to retain heat. This meant that we had to look at non-stick pans and cast iron which is has natural properties of being non-stick. We then shortlisted the best pans based on user reviews. We tried to look for thickness and weight as a parameter of how much heat can be retained. We then proceeded to get the shortlisted ones and test it out on our own. We got a professional cook to try them out and give their review. Finally we arrived at our two best options.

 

The Best Dosa Tawa

 

1. Futura Non-Stick Tawa, 28cm

tawa-big

We picked this Tawa because of the consistently good Dosas it gave us across three months of testing. Made of heavy-gauge, aluminium material, this tawa is remarkably durable with consistent heat distribution for uniform results. Its 4.88mm thick and is highly rated by users. However it has a non-induction base and works only on traditional gas flames.

We like its slick non-stick surface that released dosa’s easily, the thick bottom which retained heat longer and the sturdy aluminum construction with the plastic handle, that stays cool. The Tawa comes with a 2 year warranty from Hawkins.

However , do take note that this Tawa is flat and does not have a lip. While it is perfect for Dosas, Chapatis, toasts etc, it does not retain oil and hence unsuitable for frying bacon, eggs etc which may be runny.

We also think that 28 cm is the perfect size, anything smaller just wont do.

 

Pros:

1. Light Weight

2. Handles stay Cool

3. Easy to maintain and clean


Cons:

1. Does not last as long – expected lifetime 2 -3 years

2. Should replace if scratched and non-stick coating comes off

3. Non induction base. Will work only on standard burners

Are non-stick Pans safe ?

There has been some debate on the safety of non stick pans and their coatings and whether it causes cancer. The consensus it seems is that nonstick cookware is considered safe if it is used properly. Primarily, this means not overheating the pan. Overheating nonstick pans causes their coating to break down, which can result in the release of surface particles and/or toxic gases. Read our links at the end for more details.

Use and care 

1. Use pans on low or medium heat only (not high heat).

2. Use high quality nonstick cookware. Cheap, lightweight nonstick pans heat up faster (not good), so invest in a good quality, heavier-bottomed pan. These cost more but will cook more evenly, last longer, and be safer.

3. Avoid scratching or chipping your nonstick pans. Use wood or silicone spatulas instead of metal, and don’t use steel wool to clean your pans.

4.. Replace moderately used nonstick cookware every three to five years. If your pan becomes damaged (scratched or chipped) for any reason before this, don’t keep using it; replace it immediately.

The bad news is non-stick is temporary and will break down in 3- 4 years depending on the care you give. If the coating starts to come off or scratches, replace immediately. For just about double the price, you have the Lodge cast iron pan which basically can last forever. Read on..

 

2. Lodge Logic Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Tawa Pan – 10.5-Inch

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The Lodge Cast Iron Pan is the perfect tool for cooking Dosas, pizza or crepes or even an egg. The slightly raised edges keep oil, batter and other ingredients neatly contained. Cast iron can be used on a stovetop, on induction in an oven or over a campfire. This Cast Iron pan is made in the USA, has fantastic heat retention and lasts forever. The only downsides are that they are heavy and maintaining the seasoning requires effort.

Traditionally, before you could use any new cast iron pan, you needed to season it, heating and applying fat to saturate the metal’s pores. This would help it resist rust and eventually form a nonstick surface. In 2002, Lodge introduced Logic, a line of cookware preseasoned in the factory: Pans are sprayed with a soy-based vegetable oil and baked at a high temperature. The appealing thing about cast iron is that it absorbs heat slowly and evenly, and is perfect for range-to-oven cooking.

The Cast iron pan takes a while to heat up, but once hot, it retains heat for a long time. For Dosas, this helps in getting even cooking on a slow flame. The Pan might require a little more oil initially, but once seasoned, the old required is similar to that of  a non-stick pan. Its heavy though and the handle gets hot, so it is difficult to move around. However, it is versatile and can be used on induction, ceramic, electric and gas cooktops, in your oven, on the grill, or even over the campfire. Do not use in the microwave.

Its heavy and difficult to season, but here is one product that will last a lifetime. For dosas that are crisp and evenly cooked without any dish of artificial chemicals seeping from the pan, this is the best Griddle.

Pros:

1. With proper care, this will last forever. You can hand it down to your great grand children.

2. Induction Compatible.

Cons:

1. Heavy.

2. Difficult to maintain. If not seasoned regularly, will rust.

3. Handle gets hot and you need mitts.

 

Use and Care 

A new cast iron skillet can take a good while before it becomes truly nonstick. Even though its pre-seasoned, it  can take some time to get into a groove. In this case, be patient with it and use a little extra oil in your cooking. Make sure that you’re re-applying a thin coat of oil to the pan after you clean it. This helps protect the metal and improves its nonstick super powers.

The following use and care instructions for Seasoned Cast Iron will help your cookware last a lifetime.

After use, simply wash with your hand and dry immediately. Rub with a light coat of vegetable oil after every wash. Use little oil, just enough to restore the sheen, without being “sticky”.

Soap is generally not required, but you can wash with mild soapy water and dry and oil immediately. However, consider that cookware is 400ºF after 4 minutes on medium heat and is sterile at 212º F, so soap isn’t always necessary.Dishwashers, strong detergents and metal scouring pads are not recommended, as they remove seasoning.

Without protective seasoning iron can rust. It’s really easy to fix. Scour the rust, rinse, dry, and rub with a little vegetable oil.If problem persists, you will need to thoroughly remove all rust and re-season.

 

References 

  1. How To Restore a Rusty Cast Iron Skillet – Kitchn.com

  2. You Can Bring a Cast-Iron Pan Back From the Dead – bonappetit.com

  3. Are my non-stick saucepans a health hazard? – The Guardian

 

 

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