Monday, April 05, 2010

Bite-size Dahi Vadas

Some of my memories growing up in Bihar, are of really sour dahi vadas served during Holi at our neighbor’s place. As if Auntyji waited in anticipation for days for the “curd” to turn sour before she dipped her sour-o-meter and decided that was it!

As if that was not enough, her vadas were hard, and often crumbled before they actually reached the little melamine bowls she served them in.

Call me spoilt, but sorry Auntyji I like my dahi vadas a little sweet and petite-size. And definitely made with real urad dal and not slices of bread you sometimes sneaked in!

Here is how I make my dahi vadas:

1 cup urad dal, soaked overnight
250 grams plain yogurt
1 tablespoon chopped raisins
2 tablespoons chopped cashew nuts
1 tablespoon finely chopped/grated ginger
2 tablespoons finely chopped coriander
1 tablespoon finely chopped green chilies
Roasted cumin seeds, coarsely ground
Sweet and sour tamarind chutney
Vegetable oil for frying
A pinch of baking powder
1 teaspoon red chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
Black salt

IMG_6959Grind to a smooth paste the urad dal. Whisk it with a pinch of baking powder and plain salt. Add just a wee bit of the chopped ginger, coriander, green chilies, cashew nuts, raisins, cumin seeds, and black peppercorns.
IMG_6960 IMG_6962Heat oil in a wok, make small, bite-size dumplings of the dal batter and fry till golden brown. I usually stick a toothpick at the center of the dumplings to check if they are done. Its best to fry them in batches and not crowd the wok/pan.
IMG_6964 IMG_6966Dip the dal dumplings in water for 1-2 minutes and squeeze out the water between your palms, readying them for the yogurt dip!
IMG_6967In a blender, churn the yogurt, black salt and sugar to taste. Plate the flattened dumplings in a dish and pour the yogurt mix. Garnish with all the chopped ingredients and chill.
IMG_6970 IMG_6971 IMG_6973Drizzle some tamarind chutney, sprinkle roasted cumin powder, red chili powder and serve the Dahi Vadas.
IMG_6977This is a great appetizer for the summers and you will usually find it all over India - though in its various regional avatars. IMG_6974


Ushnish Ghosh said...

Dear Pree
I love extra sour Dahi vada, a speciality in ORISSA..In Kuwiat I used to make this , by using medu vada from market and keep dahi out side to make it sour..and lot of chilis.
read my story on short cut to Dahi vada ...the preamble ..the recipe is not imp.
bhalo theko
Ghosh kaku

The knife said...

Pree, its amazing how you make these dishes in a faraway land. Loved the look of the vadas

Dahi vadas in Mumbai are so sweet that I often have them instead of desserts in buffets

PreeOccupied said...

@Ushnish Kaku, I saw your medhu vada short cut. Looks wicked.

@The Knife, I do too, eat dahi vadas for desserts in weddings. I think mine was the only wedding I missed having any dessert, mishti doi ta miss korlaam. :-(

The knife said...

@Pree: our wedding had the same set of seven adults and two tiny tots and the two of us. Lunch was a buffet at a place called Starters and More. Which has shut down since. Dinner was at a restaurant called Gallops. I was too nauseous to eat by then.

We landed at Calcutta the next day where my mom had organised a kochuri and alu evening as neighbours came to bless just as we landed at calcutta