Even though the internet is flooded with urad vada recipes, I am compelled to document my quest to make the perfect vadas that are filled with spicy nostalgia. My attachment to food is most evident by the many food memories I hold dear. One such memory, takes me back to being a shy 10 year old at my tuition teacher’s place who was also my neighbor. Ever so often her mallu mom would make these yummy vadas and generously set aside some for me. Oh I can still recall biting into those piping hot vadas and tasting chilli in it with a hint of ginger (I suspect). And there was an occasional bite of dried coconut in it too.
Soft and fluffy, those vadas cannot compare to the ones sold in stalls. I have searched for something just as fulfilling and nothing has come close. Unfortunately we no longer have any contact with those neighbours. So all I have is this memory and every time I make these vadas I try to reach the heights of that spicy goodness. And honestly, I must admit Amma’s vadas will always be the best.
Spicy vadas filled with nostalgia
Recipe type: Snack
Yield: roughly 25-30 vadas
- 1 cup urad dal
- Salt to taste
- 3 green chillies, chopped
- 1 inch ginger, finely chopped
- 1 stalk curry leaves, finely chopped
- 1 tsp crushed pepper
- Pinch of baking soda
- Oil for frying
Let's bring it together:
- Soak urad dal for atleast two hours or overnight. Drain and grind the dal with some salt, till it's a fine batter. Add little water if needed.
- In a bowl, mix the batter with finely chopped green chilli, ginger, curry leaves and pepper. Add salt if needed. Keep it aside for an hour or more.
- In a kadai, heat oil for frying. Mix baking soda in the batter. Once the oil is hot, add the batter with the help of a teaspoon. Remove the vadas once they are golden and let them rest on a absorbent tissue. Serve them plain with hot ginger tea or some green chutney.