Best Occasion to Prepare this Recipe
Weekends are when you crave a LOT of Junk. Just anything fried in oil will also do. That’s how I’ve seen our system behaves. Why? ’cause all through the week, we are too busy to beg mom/wife to make “something nice”, or if you cook, you’re very happy that you can make atleast salad, dal-chawal. Then weekend comes, that’s when you’re the king of your bowel, you have enough time to deal with even if something goes wrong with it. Who cares?!
On that note, vada is one such popular weekend food in our household. Come Saturday, we drag ourselves to this restaurant that serves Idli-Vada or I make them at home. It’s a tradition we hate to defy. To keep it fun, I serve myself a new innovative vada variety every weekend.
You wanna get the Vada texture right? Check out some useful pointers in “My IMPROV & NOTES” section!
Note: If this is your first time frying an item, please stand a few inches away from the fuming oil and SLIDE the batter along an edge of the kadai. Do NOT drop it straight in from the top- the oil is bound to spray straight at you.
PS: Serve hot with green Chutney, Coconut Chutney or tomato onion chutney if you have time to spare. You can also have it just with tomato ketchup
My Top Recipe Recommendations
- Ulundu Vada/Uzhundu Vada/Urad Dal Vada Recipe– Urad Dal vada is one of the most popular south Indian snack. It not only serves as a popular tiffen/breakfast recipe, it serves as an ideal accompaniment to piping hot tea.
- Masala Vada Recipe- Walk in the street near your house. Do you find a tea stall somewhere around? Ask them for vada, they’ll serve you these yummy fritter snacks that’ll keep you wanting more. If you’re a regular, you know how it feels!
- Saboodana Vada Recipe – A preferred fasting food, also had during festivals like Navratri. I’ve given my tips for making them crispy – check My Improv & Notes section!
- Mumbai Style Batata Vada/Aaloo Bonda – Batata Vada also known as aloo bonda is a deep fried savory appetizer made with spicy potato mix. When they are served hot they are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. This is a very popular street food in Mumbai. Try Vada Pav at home today!
- Dahi Vada/ Dahi Bhalla –Made with lentil and yogurt, this easy-to-make recipe is loved by people of all age groups. This recipe is a melange of spices, chutney, crunchy vada, yogurt and freshly chopped coriander. The addition of yogurt amps- up the health quotient of this recipe, as it is easy to digest and is healthier
- Rava Vada/Sooji ke Vade– Sooji+ Yogurt, deep fried in oil. No prior soaking needed. A very hassle free recipe for instant snacking!
- Kalmi Vada– A popular Rajasthani snack served with green chutney! This one is made out of 4 Dal types with flavoring of Ajwain. Delicious as it is healthier
- Palak Dal Vada/Keerai Vada – This popular Vada type is forever etched in my memory as my grandma used to make this for my dad regularly and it was thoroughly enjoyed by him! It’s prepared using Chana Dal, Toor Dal and mixed its batter with spices, shallots, and chopped spinach
- Cabbage Vada – Another popular variation of Masala Vada that gets crispier as it is delicious
- Moong Dal Vada – Moong Dal Vadas are also known as pakoras, bhajias or fritters. Try them as a late afternoon snack!
- Beetroot Vada -Beetroot Vada is a deep fried, mild sweetish South Indian fritter. The dals are soaked for an hour and ground coarsely with fennel seeds and green chilies
- Sambhar Vada – Enjoy this in Madurai Idly Kadai when you visit Tamil Nadu. Top the Sambar vada with chopped onions and coriander
- Kacha Posto Bora– Posto bora is a rare delicacy cooked in the Bengali household. These poppy seed fritters are made with poppy seeds(of course), lots of green chillies, maida and fried in Bengal’s favourite mustard oil
- Thavala Adai – This is a unique vada recipe prepared in South Indian households made using rice, lentils and grated coconut
- Vazhapoo Vada/Banana Flower Vada – This is one of the authentic Tamilnadu delicacy. In this recipe, cleaned and chopped banana flower is ground with gram dal and spices & deep fried in oil.
- Falafel Recipe –Crispy Fried Garbanzo bean/Chickpea fritter balls- popular “vadas” made in Mediterranean cuisine. One of my most favorite recipes that closely resembles our very own Masala Vada
- Milagu Vada/Pepper Vada – Crispy and crunchy pepper vada are offered in Hanuman Jayanti
My Improv & Notes
How to Make your favorite Vadas in the right texture?
Medhu/Urad Dal Vada Tips
- Don’t add water while grinding the Dal mix
- Place mixture in the refrigerator for 15-20 minutes before making the vadas, they will turn out crispier!
- Check if the oil is hot enough to fry the vada, if it’s not hot enough, vada will absorb more oil into them
- Do not deep fry the vadas on high flame, otherwise they will turn dark on the outside really fast and remain uncooked on the inside
- You can fry 4-5 vadas at a time depending on the amount of oil you use
- Add ginger, curry leaves, pearl onions, and even black peppercorns – gives an aromatic taste to urad dal vada/medhu vada
Masala Vada Tip
- For making Masal Vadas, I grind 1/2 tsp fennel seeds (saunf), 1/2 tsp jeera, 1/2 tsp coriander seeds (dhaniya seeds), 2 red chilies, one inch cinnamon stick, 2-3 garlic cloves together and add it to the dal mix for extra flavor. Add 4-5 chopped mint leaves to your mix
Saboodana Vada Tips
- As for Saboodana Vadas, when you prepare the mix, mash it well with your hand. This is very important, as you will be squeezing off the water present in saboodana. else there are chances for the water present in saboodana to burst while you deep fry
- If you want your saboodana vadas to be crispy, add a tbsp of fresh or dry grated coconut and 2 tbsps of Rajgira (Amaranth) flour to your mix
Dahi Vada Tips
- An important tip for making juicy Dahi Vadas- to get them all spongy, porous and fluffy, as an important step, beat the batter till they get light and fluffy. They should be fried immediately after beating the batter. Once the vadas are fried, they should be soaked in water which makes it even more softer and succulent.After soaking, the vadas should be gently squeezed to drain excess water. Be gentle, otherwise they will break
Milagu Vada Tip
- Rice flour and hot oil gives crispiness to the vadai. So do not skip it!
Sooji Vada Tip
- For Sooji vada, make sure the batter consistency is right as it is critical to making the vadas crispy. Leave the batter mix soaking for about 15-20 minutes and make sure it’s not too watery