From Madurai, Robyn Eckhardt reports:
Onion, cauliflower, fenugreek, garlic, egg white, potato, mushroom and masala are just some of the variations on dosa offered by the 49-year-old Mr. Karthikeyan, who took over the business from his father after earning a master’s degree in economics. “What could I do? There was no one else,” he explained as he unhurriedly worked five griddles simultaneously — four for dosai and one for fried dishes like masala powder-seasoned hard-boiled eggs with onion, cilantro and curry leaves. “Back then, a dosai cost a quarter of a rupee,” he said. Today Ayyappan charges 10 rupees and up.