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Handvo – Baked Spicy Lentil Cake

Handvo - Baked Spicy Lentil Cake

Handvo - Baked Spicy Lentil Cake

Handvo is a popular Gujrati snack. This is a baked, spicy lentil cake made with rice and different lentils fermented batter mixed with spices. This is served with chutney. Handvo is crisp outside and soft inside.
I have many requests for this recipe and decided to give a try. Finely after trying few times I was happy with my last trial. Now it is the time for me to try out this recipe with friends including friends from Gujrat as they were asking for the recipe. I said wow, so here is the recipe.
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Course snacks
Cuisine Indian
Servings 8 people


  • 1 cup rice
  • 1/4 cup chana dal
  • 1/4 cup curad dal split with skin
  • 1/4 cup toor dal
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • About 1 inch piece ginger chopped
  • 1-2 green chili adjust to taste
  • 1-3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon asafetida
  • 1/2 cup yogurt
  • 2 teaspoon oil
  • 1 cup laucki shredded (opo squash, bottlegourd, doodhi)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Eno fruit salt

For Seasoning

  • 1 tablespoon oil 1 teaspoon
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1/8 teaspoon asafetida
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds

Also need

  • 2 teaspoon oil to grease the baking pan
  • 8x8 baking pan, for this recipe I prefer glass baking pan


  • Wash and soak rice, chana dal, toor dal, and urad dal in about four cups of water for at least four hours.
  • Drain the water and blend soaked rice, lentil, ginger, green chili lightly coarse texture, (try not to use any water). I prefer to use food processor, add yogurt, turmeric, salt, sugar and asafetida, blend it again for few more seconds. Transfer the dal mix into a bowl and let the mix ferment for about 10 to 12 hours.
  • Add the opo squash, 2 tablespoons of oil, lemon juice to the fermented dal mix and mix it well. Add ENO to the mixture and mix, this will make the handvo mix light and fluffy.
  • Grease the 8x8 baking pan generously and pour the handvo mix into the greased pan. Tap the pan; it will help spreading the mix evenly.
  • Sprinkle the sesame seeds over the handvo batter.
  • Heat the oil for seasoning in a small pen over medium heat, after oil is moderately hot add the mustard seeds and asafetida as mustard seeds crack, turn off the heat.
  • Drizzle the seasoning over the top of the sesame seeds.
  • Cover the pan with aluminum foil and place the pan on middle oven rack and bake at 350 degree F, preheated oven for 20 minutes.
  • Remove the foil and bake for another 20 minutes until top of the handvo is light golden brown or until knife inserted in center of the cake comes out clean.
  • Let the handvo cool off for about 15 minutes. Cut them in sixteen pieces. Handvo is ready to serve.
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34 thoughts on “Handvo – Baked Spicy Lentil Cake

  1. Muanjulaji,
    Thank you for your recipes. Your videos are very informative and very big help. I have a question: when I am fermenting the batter for 8 to 10 hours, should I leave it out on the counter or put it in the refrigerator?
    – Anju

  2. Can you freeze the unbaked dough for later baking and serving? I’m cooking for a large group and would like to get as much of the prep work done ahead of time as possible.

  3. Your Handvo looks delicious. Handvo is a favourite dish in my household. Thankfully, we get the ready mix so we just marinade it overnight in yogurt and make it the next day. I don’t use Eno. I use lemon juice and soda bi carbonate and the results are fine.

  4. Thank you very much for this recipe, Manjula-Ji! This is oven baked dish is very satisfying and might become a favourite in my kitchen in the future!

    Despite it loosing some of its originality next time Lauki will be substituted with zucchini/courgette, carrot or pumpkin, which are more readily available and less expensive (as has been suggested somewhere already).

    I made two substitutions:
    1) whole urad dal for split (rather than stocking up on another ingredient),
    2) raising agent of my choice (“Weinsteinbackpulver” = 2 parts cream of tartar + 1 part baking soda) for Eno.

    Both worked out fine. Though colour was not as beautiful. Maybe this was due to using whole urad (or different quality of urad) or different quality of haldi/turmeric powder. When using a regular baking powder (whichever kind) one maybe should take care not open the oven before the batter is well baked so that it doesn’t inflate. At the same time baking soda was already reacting with the lemon juice in the cold batter, though the effect was not as strong as in your video when using Eno. Regarding opening the door aluminum foil was not necessary with my oven to prevent the top from burning. But that probably depends on anyone’s oven and on how deeply the batter is filled into the baking pan (actual baking time). In the end some extra top heat helped to give it extra crispiness.

  5. I am Gujarati and I make handvo every 8-10 days .

    To make it crisp, DO NOT put an aluminum foil while baking handvo. and prick with a tooth pick or knife after 30 minutes or so , just like we check cake, if knife comes out clean its done.
    Now turn on LOW broil on over. Move handvo plate on second shelf from top and keep in for 2 minutes . Check it right away until it turns brown ( if you need it light brown take it out now) or keep it for another 1 -2 minutes . Be careful it burns very fast so watch out closely.
    You can use any flat over proof pan glass or metal. and add shredded carrots, cabbage, green or yellow squash etc any vegetable you can shred. years ago when “dudhi” was hardly available in USA I made this any shreddable vegetable on hand.

  6. Namaste Aunty-ji
    Can I use Handvo flour with this recipe (here in the UK we can buy the flours ready mixed) if so how much instead of first four items of your recipe?
    Thank you so much for all your wonderful recipes for a vegetarian Indian food is like amrit 🙂

  7. Manjula, many thanks. You always know exactly what recipe I am looking for! Is there a substitute for Eno fruit salt? I cannot find it.

  8. Hello Madam ! want to know can Handvo be made in flat pan? if yes, then how to make it’s top crust brown? Secondly.what is the difference between Besan & Chana ka atta?
    Hope to hear from you soon.Thanks.

    1. Besan and chana Flour both are the same thing. You can also make individual helpings in a deep round bottom non stick pan. Like omelets. Cover and cook with little oil. It turns out great.

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