The name "Dahi Vada" itself makes my mouth drool. The soft, spongy vadas immersed in a chilled spicy, creamy yoghurt just melts in your mouth like an ice-cream. It looks oo like an ice-cream...Kind of Chocolate sauce drizzled over large Vanilla Ice-cream scoops. YUM!! There is so much going on, in a single bite that your taste buds will have an explosion of sweetness, saltiness, spiciness, all at the same time but yet you will be able to tell, what taste is coming from where.
For my blogger friends who are not from India, let me tell you what exactly Dahi Vada is. "Dahi" means yoghurt in Hindi & "Vada" is the lentil fritters. These fritters are deep fried & then soaked in a spiced chilled yoghurt & then topped with a sweet chutney or sauce. This is one of the popular accompaniment or a delicacy prepared in an Indian cuisine. Both North & the South Indians prepare this dish but with a slight variation. Some like the yoghurt more sweet, some a little less. But the taste remains just delish!
- 1 cup urad dal (split skinless black lentils, washed)
- 3 cups fresh curd (yoghurt) + 1/2 cup curd more
- 1 tbsp red chilli powder
- 1 tsp roasted cumin powder
- 1 tsp sugar
- salt to taste
- cooking oil for deep frying
- Soak the washed urad dal in a bowl of water for a minimum of 4-6 hours. Drain it and grind the dal to make a paste. Use very little water to grind the dal. The paste should not be watery but so thick that when you take a spoonful of the batter and invert the spoon, the batter should fall off with a plop sound!
- Add salt to your taste & use your hand to mix to trap the air inside the batter which will make the vadas fluffy and soft.
- Heat oil in a heavy based pan to deep fry the vadas. When it becomes hot, take a tablespoon of the batter & drop it slowly to the oil. Unlike "uzhunnu vadas" (see the recipe under the category, Indian), you don't have to make holes in the batter. Deep fry the vadas until they become light golden.
- While the vadas are frying in oil, take a bowl filled with 1 cup of hot water & 1/2 cup curd with enough salt. Mix well and keep aside. Take out the vadas from the oil & drop it straight to this salted yoghurt-water. Let the vadas soak in it, while you fry other batches. This procedure is done to make the vadas soft.
- Take another mixing bowl & mix in the 3 cups curd/yoghurt & beat it well till smooth & frothy. Add red chilli powder, roasted cumin powder, sugar & salt. Mix well & keep aside.
- Squeeze the vadas, kept in the yoghurt water to remove the excess water & place it well in a flat square dish. Pour the earlier made spiced yoghurt over the vadas so that the vadas are completely covered with it. Chill the dish for at least 2 hours before serving it.
- At the time of serving, top the dahi vadas with sprinkling of red chilli powder & cumin powder & pour on some generous amount of meethi chutney or the sweet tamarind relish. Heaven!!
PS: Please click here for the recipe of Meethi Chutney.