Dahi vada are a craze at home and I do make them at times as they require some prep work to be done beforehand. Like making both the spicy green coriander chutney and sweet tamarind chutney, preparing the vada etc.
The North Indian dahi vada is made slightly differently than the South Indian version. In the North Indian version of dahi vada, we just add the green chutney, saunth chutney (tamarind chutney) sprinkled with some spice mixes. And the magic of its taste makes everyone’s mouth water.
1 cup Urad daal (skinned and split black lentils)
1 cup Moong daal (skinned and split moong beans)
1/4 cup Water for grinding the lentils
Salt to taste
1/4 teaspoon Asafoetida
1/4 teaspoon Ginger paste optional
1/4 teaspoon Green chili paste optional
Oil for frying Vada
10-12 oz. Yogurt (use vegan yogurt for vegan version)
1 teaspoon Powdered black salt
1 tablespoon Cumin, roasted & ground
1/4 teaspoon Red chili powder
1/2 teaspoon Chaat Masala optional
2 tablespoons Cilantro, finely chopped
1/4 cup Date-Tamarind chutney (optional)
- Soak both the lentils overnight. If you don’t have a lot of time, do so at least for 4 hours.
- Coarsely grind the soaked lentils, along with green chilies, ginger, asafoetida, and salt.
- Add little water if needed.
For the above quantity, about 1/4 to 1/2 cup water should be enough. The batter should not be runny.
- *Key Step
Beat the batter(preferably with hand) to make the batter fluffy and airy. This makes the vada quite spongy.
The key to making soft wadas is to whisk the batter in one direction for at least 5-10 minutes.
- In a pan, take some oil and heat it.
When the oil is hot, drop tablespoonfuls of batter in oil.
- Fry on medium heat until golden brown. Given that the mixture is made of lentils, it’s important for it to fry enough so that the lentils are cooked.
- Vada when fried are crispy so, Keep a container filled with water ready.
- As soon as you take out the vada from oil after frying, dunk these in a container filled with water.
- Keep it in water for about 15-20 minutes, and then gently squeeze out the water by pressing the vada between your palms, making sure not to break these.
- Add black salt (Sanchar) to the yogurt. Whisk it until the consistency is very smooth. Add a little bit of water if needed to make it slightly thinner.
- When serving, put Vadas on a plate, add the whisked, chilled yogurt.
- Add a teaspoonful of tamarind chutney (optional) and garnish with the roasted cumin powder, chili powder, chaat masala, and finely chopped cilantro. Enjoy!