Masala Vada

Masaal Vaade ...Masaale Vaade....wondering what this is all about? about this.. .."kanyakumariku Sellum Reealli Eranddavathu Flatformaarathil Eruthu Seela dodikalli Kalamba Thaiyaraga Eerukirathu" was able to translate Tamil into English...For my non-Tamil readers - the train leaving for Kanyakumari is about to start in Platform No : 2. I have always had such difficulty writing Tanglish.. You might ask what I was trying to depict here. I was trying to get in the mood and atmosphere right for serving Masala Vada. Masala Vada is a perennial snack sold very fervently in Railway Platforms down South India. One familiar with this scene will appreciate the passion and admiration this snack bestows on one unexpected traveler.

As a kid, traveling many times by train I have seen and enjoyed this snack by sight and never really tasted it. We were never allowed to eat anything sold in the platforms. I can only vouch it tastes excellent by the ardent invitation this attracts the moment it is brought through the platform. The aroma wading through the platform, the vendor bustling around the crowd, to get his stuff sold, the kids cajoling their parents to get them, Masala Vada is sure a sight to watch.

Apart from this, you have different foodie vendors assaulting your senses with their wares.

I was reminded of all these when we made this at home. Amma's Masala Vada is very famous, it disappears the moment it makes a presence. Well, I normally don't count how many I eat, being a typical lover of this. It is said Masala Vada goes with Chai, but I vouch for Vada with Coffee! Yes, take a bite of vada and gulp a mouthful of coffee, nothing to beat this around.

Well let me get down to the way we do this at home..

Masala Vada

Serves : 15 medium sized Vadas
Soaking Time + Preparation Time : 3 hrs
Cooking Time : 15 mins
Cuisine : Tamil Nadu

Ingredients Needed:

Bengal Gram / Channa Dal - 1 cup (200 gms)
Onion - 1 big
Green Chilli - 2
Red Chilli - 2
Ginger - 1" (optional)
Coriander leaves - as desired
Fennel Seeds - 1 tsp
Salt to taste
Curry leaves few
Oil for deep frying

Method to prepare:

Clean and soak channa dal for min 2 hrs. Except 2 tbsp of Channa dal, grind the dal with Chillies coarsely. Mix the whole channa dal to the coarsely ground dal.

Chop Onions, Coriander, Ginger finely. Mix this with the dal to form a good mixture.

Heat Oil in a pan. Divide the dal mix into small balls, flatten them into small patties, either using your palm or using a wet plastic cover.

Once the oil is hot, deep fry each one until its well cooked. Normally takes around 5 mins on sim for each one to be ready.

How you serve this is entirely your choice. On pretext of sampling, I normally eat one or two, while frying them. Rest I either serve as such or else with Coconut Chutney. But on its own Masala Vada is a match for anything!

Enjoy this snack anytime of the day!

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