Dahi Vadas are lentil dumplings topped with a spicy savory yogurt and tamarind chutney. These are great as a side dish for a formal dinner or served as a chaat.
Makes about 30.
- 3/4 cup washed Moong dal
- 1/4 cup washed Urad dal
- Oil to fry
- 1 1/2 cup yogurt
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon red chilly powder
- 1/2 teaspoon roasted cumin seed powder
- 3 tablespoons tamarind chutney
To make the Vadas:
- Mix both dals and wash several times until the water appears clear.
- Soak dal in 4 cups of water for at least six hours.
- Drain the water and blend dal to very creamy texture. Just using enough water as needed to blend. Using too much water while blending dal will not be creamy in texture.
- Whip dal batter using a spoon in a circular motion for about two to three minutes until batter will become light and fluffy. If needed add few spoons of water.
- To fry the vadas, use a flat frying pan. Do not put more than 1/2 inch of oil in the frying pan.
- Place the heat on medium high. To check if oil is ready put a little batter into the oil, oil will sizzle and batter should start expending upwards slowly without changing color.
- Place about 1 tablespoon of batter into the oil. Batter should not be covered with oil. This will allow the vada to expand. The vada will be softer if they are shallow fried.
- Fry the vadas in small batches. Fry the vada until thew are golden brown all around.
- After you have made all of the vadas, place the vadas in luke warm water and soak for about 20 minutes.
- Next squeeze the vadas gently to take out the water, be careful not to break the vadas.
To make Yogurt topping and Garnish:
- Take two cups of yogurt and mix until very smooth. Use some milk as needed to make the consistency similar to pancake batter or lassi. Add about 1 teaspoon of salt or as needed.
- Soak all the vadas in the yogurt batter for at least twenty minutes, giving the vadas time to absorb the yogurt.
- Slowly pick up each vada and transfer into a serving dish, pouring a few spoons of extra yogurt all over the vadas.
- Just before serving, sprinkle some salt as needed, ground roasted cumin seeds, red chilly powder and finish off with a drizzle of tamarind chutney.
- Change the proportions of dal or make vadas with just urad dal or just with moong dal.
- As an alternative, you can add chopped green chilies and crushed coriander seeds to the dal batter, just before you start frying the vadas.
- Instead of serving with tamarind chutney, you can add some chopped cilantro over the dahi vadas.
- You can also make the vadas very small and serve as a Raita dish.
- If you are vegan, you can also soak the vadas in tamarind chutney instead of yogurt and sprinkle some chopped cilantro.
You can also make the dahi vadas in advance and freeze them before soaking in the water. When ready to use, take as many as needed out and soak in hot water for a few minutes. Next, change the water to room temperature and soak for 20 minutes. Now you can prepare and serve them the usual way.