Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Thavala Vadai (தவல வடை)


'Thavala vadai' (தவல வடை) is made with a mixture of different dhals and hence, it has a distinct taste as against ‘medhu vadai’ (மெது வடை) made with urad dhal alone. Thavala vadai makes a good snack item along with coconut chutney. However, you can make this vadai as part of festival menu, preferably without onions. This recipe was taught by my grandmother and it works great for me. Give it a try!

Fig.1: Thavala Vadai Batter
Ingredients: (Makes approximately 12-15 vadas)
Bengal gram dhal/ channa dhal – 1 big hollow ladle or 75ml measure
Red gram dhal/ Toor dhal – 1 big hollow ladle or 75ml measure
Black gram dhal/ Urad dhal – 1 big hollow ladle or 75ml measure
Salt – to taste
Asafoetida – a generous pinch
Dried red chilli – 2-3 no (adjust to taste)
Curry leaves – a few
Oil – for deep frying
Onion – 1no, chopped finely*

*You may use shallots (சாம்பார் வெங்காயம்) instead of onion. Peel and chop shallots finely and add to the vadai batter.

Method: Wash and soak the dhals in sufficient water for at least four hours. Later wash the dhals once again and drain the water completely. Grind the dhal with salt, red chilli and asafoetida into a thick batter using the mixer-grinder. DO NOT add water while grinding. Transfer the batter to a bowl, add curry leaves and chopped onion. Mix well (Fig.1). 

Fig:2 Shape the batter into a vadai
Heat oil in a kadai on medium flame and check if the oil is ready by dropping a small quantity of batter into it. If the oil is ready, the batter will fry and rise to the surface. Shape the batter into a ‘vadai’ (வடை), like a round patty on a plantain leaf. You may also use a thick plastic sheet for this purpose (See Fig.2). Wet the sheet with water, place a tablespoonful of batter and flatten it slightly. Remove it from the sheet and drop it gently in hot oil. 

You may be able to fry 3-4 vadas simultaneously, depending on the size of the vada you make. Turn the vadas over and cook on both sides, till the vadas become golden brown in color. Remove the vadas and place them on paper napkins for the excess oil to drain. Continue to make vadas till you use up the batter fully. You may store the vadas in a hot case. Serve hot with coconut chutney.

Thavala Vadai (தவல வடை)
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