Masala vada with a little spin!
The weather has been wonderful, not too hot and pleasant to everyone’s satisfaction. That prompted me to go wild and soak in the goodness of the Sun and feel its bliss. So excuse me! Last week I did not post much because of this silly reason. Oh come on, let me blame it on the weather and not my laziness. Summer has its share of other attractions like travel, visitors, parties and shopping. Food that needs less preparation or eating out has been the norm lately.
Parties being the part of the game, I schedule all my invites to the summer months. When guests come, I have a stash of vadas that can be made earlier at leisure and frozen. Reheated, they are crispy finger food/starters for any occasion along with a welcome drink. It works like a charm!
There are two kinds of vadas, the urad dhal/black lentil and the channa dhal/chick pea vadas. For some strange reason, Urad vada also called Methu vada is far more favoured by many. It can be soaked in curd/yogurt and other preparations like sambar and rasam. It can also be served with breakfast or lunch and can be eaten just dipping them in chutney.
Masala vada, split chick peas vada is made by adding spices and doesn’t need any accompaniment but would be tastier with chutney. I have rarely seen people say ‘no’ to these vadas. I normally buy them for an in-car snack while on an afternoon drive.
I can swear that the tastiest vadas I have eaten are from the corner of our street in Coimbatore. There was an old lady just like in the fable, making vadas in a most unhealthy junction of the street. Did they taste yum? If I cannot forget those vadas after all these decades, then you can easily deduce!
I made these by adding a little oat meal for a change. Why? A bit more nutrition conscious, hehe! These vadas with the addition of green leaves like spinach or methi, are called Keera vadas.
- 1 cup channa dhal/split chick peas
- 1/4 cup oats
- 2 green chillies
- small piece ginger
- 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
- 1/2 medium red onion
- few curry leaves
- few coriander leaves
- Vegetable oil for frying
- Wash channa dhal andsoak for at least 4 hours.
- Add chillies, curry leaves, chopped onion and ginger to the drained split chick peas.
- Crush those in a blender to a coarse mixture without adding any water.
- Let there be some some dhal not crushed to provide an appealing texture.
- Add oats, salt, fennel seeds and chopped coriander leaves and mix well.
- Make the mixture into small balls and flatten them by patting with the fingers.
- Heat oil to a smoking point and slide the patties carefully into the hot oil one at a time.
- Fry a batch of 5 vadas at one time as more patties will lower the oil temperature.
- Lower to medium heat and cook on both sides by gently turning the patties.
- Serve them piping hot with tea.
Tea shops sell them as an evening snack with tea or coffee. It is also an all time snack in South India. There are many hard core fans for this vada. I am one! You never know if you will be addicted too. So take a spicy bite!