|1/2 cup Chana Dal (Bengal gram)|
|1 medium Onion, finely chopped|
|1 Green Chilli, seeded and finely chopped|
|1/2 inch piece of Ginger, finely chopped or grated (optional)|
|4-5 Curry Leaves, finely chopped|
|2-3 tablespoons finely chopped Coriander Leaves|
|Salt to taste|
|Oil, for deep frying|
- Wash and soak chana dal in water for 2 hours. Transfer soaked dal to a colander and drain the water.
- Transfer drained dal to the small jar of a mixer grinder.
- Grind until medium coarse texture. If required, scrape the sides and grind the mixture again. It should be okay if a few whole dal remains (this would give a nice chunky texture to vada). Don’t add more water while grinding.
- Transfer it to a medium bowl. Add finely chopped onion, green chilli, ginger, curry leaves, coriander leaves and salt.
- Mix all ingredients well. Mixture should not be very moist or dry. If the mixture is too crumbly and it’s difficult to make vadas from it as described in Step-6, then grind 1/4 cup mixture again until smooth and mix with the remaining mixture. If the mixture is too moist and it’s hard to shape vadas, add 2-3 teaspoons of rice flour or gram flour in the mixture.
- Grease your palms with oil and divide mixture into 7-8 equal portions. Take each portion of mixture, give it a round lemon like shape and flatten it a little by pressing it in-between your palms and give a pattie like shape. Place all vadas in a plate.
- Heat oil in a deep frying pan over medium flame. When oil is medium hot, slide 2-3 vadas in oil from the side of pan and deep fry them until golden brown and crispy.
- Transfer them to a plate on paper napkin. Deep-fry remaining vadas. Masala Vadas are ready to serve. Serve them hot with tea or coffee.
- Don’t add water while grinding the dal.
- Do not deep-fry vadas on high flame otherwise they will turn dark brown fast and remains uncooked from inside.
- Place mixture in refrigerator for 15-20 minutes before making vadas in step-5. This would make crispier masala vada.
- Grind ½ teaspoon fennel seeds (saunf), ½ teaspoon dry coriander seeds (dhaniya ke bij), 5-6 black peppercorns (sabut kali mirch) and 2 garlic cloves together and add it to the crushed chana dal mixture for extra flavor.