Today I would like to share with you this very easy vada recipe from my cousin Uma. She had made these yellow split pea masala vadas for a lunch gathering and it was outstanding!
Vadas are lentil fritters that are made all over India. Crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, vadas are delicious appetizers and snack time treats.
There are as many vada recipes as there are various types of lentils. The basic recipe for vada involves soaking lentils in water for a few hours to soften them, and then ground into a thick coarse batter to which vegetables and spices are added.
The thick batter is then deep-fried. Vadas are usually served with a side of chutney like coconut chutney. For those of you living in the Southern United States think of these as hush puppies except these are made with lentils.
Masala vadas translates to vadas with “masala” which means spices and flavor enhancers. What I like about Uma’s vadas is the delicate flavor of fennel and the added flavors of onions, cilantro, ginger and green chili.
Easy as 1,2, 3
The best part of Uma’s recipe is how easy these vadas are to make. Just soak, grind, and fry. Give it a try !
Masala Vadas – Yellow split pea lentil fritters
recipe courtesy of Uma
makes 35 vadas
- 1 cup Yellow split peas
- 1 tsp fennel seeds
- 1-2 green chili deseeded to keep it less spicy finely cut
- 1/4 cup of finely chopped cilantro
- Few curry leaves if you have
- 1 inch piece of ginger peeled and finely chopped
- 1 shallot or 1 small onion finely cut about 1/2 cup
- Oil for frying
- Rinse yellow split peas. Place them in a bowl and add 1 1/2 cups of water. Soak for 3 hours.
- After 3 hours drain the lentils saving the water. Blend the lentils in a food processor with ginger, green chili and fennel seeds into a coarse batter adding a little of the lentil water if needed to blend.
- Add the chopped onions, curry leaves and salt to taste. Get ready to fry the masala vadas.
- Heat oil in a pan. Gently drop tablespoon full of batter into the oil. Fry until golden brown in color about 5 minutes, turning the vadas for even browning. Take out of the oil and drain on a paper towel.
- The vadas should be crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, make sure the inside stuffing is cooked and does not taste raw. Serve hot with coconut chutney or any hot sauce.
Happy Vada Eating!