9 January, 2020
Medhu Vadai aka Lentil FrittersPosted in : Appetizers & Snacks, Breakfast, Deep Fried, Gluten Free, Karnataka, Kerala, Pongal, Rice, South Indian, Tamil Nadu on by : sujeesha
Medhu vadai or ulundhu vadai is one of my favorite snacks growing up. Its so versatile, after you enjoy hot crispy vadas for breakfast, any leftovers can be converted to sambar vada or dahi vada for a completely different breakfast next morning. I will post recipes for those late
Grinding the batter in an Indian wet grinder would yield the best results since the lentils get nicely mashed between stone grinders. Too bad I do not have that luxury in the USA, I just make the batter in my Preethi mixie aka Indian blender. 😊
Hence adding a little rice flour to the batter gets you that crispy-on-the-outside-and-soft-on-the-inside vada. But beware, adding too much rice flour will make the vada not so fluffy. It has happened to me and you don’t want to experience that heartbreak. Ever!
A few more tips:
It may sound like a lot of oil for deep frying. But without enough oil, the vadas tend to stick to the bottom of the pot. Done that as well. NOT pretty. Heart break!
I also use my cast iron skillet to deep fry. Cast iron evenly distributes the heat and i’m obsessed with all my cast iron pots and skillets.
Do not worry if you do not have a surface thermometer to check the temperature of oil. Once hot, drop a small dollop of batter into oil and it should sizzle and raise to the top. Though a surface thermometer is a great kitchen tool to have. I’m obsessed with mine. I used it while deep frying anything. Once i even used it to check my body temperature when I was sick, pretty accurate surprisingly lol. But no, don’t use it for anything other than checking surface temperature of cooking oil. 😉
Also, keep in mind; whole black lentil skinned yields better results than split.
Now lets jump right into making some medhu vadai 😀
By January 9, 2020Published:
- Yield: 12 (6 Servings)
- Prep: 20 mins
- Cook: 20 mins
- Ready In: 4 hrs 40 mins
Medhu vadai or ulundhu vadai is one of my favorite snacks growing up. Its so versatile, after you enjoy hot crispy vadas for breakfast, any leftovers can be converted to sambar vada or dahi vada for a completely different breakfast next morning.
- 1 heaped cup urad dhal/skinned black lentil/Uzhundhu
- 2 tbsp rice flour
- 2-3 green chilies finely chopped
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger finely chopped
- 1 cup pearl onion or shallots finely sliced
- 1/4 cup cilantro roughly chopped
- 2 sprigs curry leaves roughly chopped
- 1 tsp black pepper corns
- 1 tsp asafetida
- Salt to taste
- Oil for deep frying
- Soak lentil for 4 hour in plenty of water. While lentil is soaking, prep the veggies as follows.
- Chop onions, ginger, green chilies, coriander and curry leaves.
- Grind soaked lentil to a smooth and fluffy batter adding just enough water to keep the blender going. If you add too much water, the batter will turn runny and won’t hold its shape. So, sprinkle as less water as possible.
- Transfer batter to a mixing bowl.
- Now add rest of the chopped veggies, black pepper, asafetida, rice flour and salt to taste to the batter and combine well. Don’t be shy, just go in with your hand and beat nicely to incorporate air into the batter to make it nice and fluffy
- Pour about 4 inches of oil in a shallow skillet and bring it to a steady 350 degrees temperature on medium heat. I use a frying thermometer to accurately judge the temperature.
- Now comes the fun part of shaping the vadas and drowning them in hot oil. Keep a bowl of water right next to the stove. Dip your hand in water to make it moist. Then scoop out lime sized ball of batter and make a hole right in the middle using the thumb of the same hand. Slowly drop shaped vadas into hot oil.
- Fry in medium heat until the edges turn golden. Flip and fry until vadas are golden brown. Try flipping just once to avoid vadas soaking up oil. You will get this by practice. Fry not more than 3 vadas to not crowd the pot.
- Enjoy these delicious vada with coconut chutney and sambar.