Adais are perceived to be a poor cousin of Dosai. Atleast, I thought it was, while I grew up. So, all of childhood, I was a rather reluctant Adai eater - it was thick, tough to eat. The taste was a bit mixed, often spicy and it had to be eaten with jaggery or with honey. The Dosai on the other hand, was easy to eat, thin, had accompaniments like Masal and Sambar and Chutney and of course, was easily available at restaurants and was very very tasty.
And while dosais are available around the globe (and that is no exaggeration) and in a zillion flavours ranging from Masala to Sada to Mysore to Onion, the Adai barely finds itself in any restaurant - even in Tamil Nadu leave alone outside. A pesarattu can be found in Andhra menus. Maybe Adai can be found in a handful of restaurants in TN. Beyond that?
So what gives? The adai is easier to make, has very little standing and preparation time and is nutritious, far more than the dosai. And yet, the adai continues to remain a less glamorous cousin of the adai.
Is it the looks? Is it the taste? Is it the thickness? Is it the color - a deep dark brown as opposed to golden doses? What is it - I don't know.
And the prospects for the adai in restaurants don't look very bright. While the dosai has captured the imagination of many a country.
(The little ones, in the meantime, have started a protest campaign against Adais)