What’s your indulgence on a cold miserable day? NC brought out in full spate some miserable and grumpy days to the boot. Nagging cold weather accompanied by some rain and a weather that could not decide between holding onto winter and hopping aboard the spring train. Yikes !
Now imagine a day where the sun refused to peek out and the bare branches of the trees formed a sticky silhouette to temper the gray dull skies. The weather even managed to incite my boisterous and slightly neurotic lab to snooze . And quite a vent hugger she was. The warm draft of air from the heater vent provided the perfect huggable carpet spot for her and I could hear her stretching and yawning.
I would have loved to take out that raggedy brown blanket, stretch out on the recliner with a hot cuppa and indulge in a book. Any book. But since kids would arrive from school and look forward to something that could perk them up.
So a hot steaming cup of chai it is and a plate piled with piping hot and steaming baby kale and baby spinach masala vada(i). Chockful of these and the lentils provide much of the protein and flavors of fennel and ginger and garlic. Seriously folks, you would be missing out if you do not make these.
A plate piled high with piping hot, crispy, golden brown masala vada(i).. packed with kale and spinach and spiced with those flavors that make it extra special – protein packed indulgence and hot steaming cuppa to make it even more better. It’s ok to indulge once in a while and it sure calls for it today !
Now what’s your excuse and what’s your indulgence?
Soaking time : 3 hrs Prep time : 15 min Cooking time : 25-30 min Pieces : about 30
Serves a hungry lot !
Pulses and Cereals: Soaked for about 3 hrs or so.
- Dry split Channa dal : 3/4 cup
- Dry Toor Dal : 1/4 cup
- Flax seeds : 2 Tbsp
- Rice : brown/ white : 2 Tbsp.
- Baby Spinach : 1 cup : chopped
- Baby Kale : 1 cup chopped
- Onion : 1 medium size : chopped fine
- Garlic cloves: 3 : chopped fine
- Cilantro : 1/4 cup, chopped fine
- Mint leaves : 8-10, chopped fine
- Green chilies : 8-10. chopped fine ( adjusted to spice level)
- Ginger : peeled, 1 inch , chopped fine
Dry Spices: ( preference can dictate the kind of spices added)
- Fennel seeds / Saunf : 1 Tbsp
- Salt : 1.5 tsp , adjusted to taste.
- Deep frying in peanut/ canola/vegetable /saffola oil of your choice.
- Grind to a thick and coarse consistency the soaked ingredients listed under pulses/ cereals
- The batter should not be extra fine or smooth but be ground enough to show occasional whole soaked dals with coarse consistency and done so just the little amount of water required. Do not make it too watery or mush, then the vada(i)s will soak up extra oil.
- Add in all the ingredients listed in spices and mix well.
- Add in the ingredients listed in vegetables and herbs and mix well.
- Let the batter rest for about 5 to 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile heat the oil on medium high heat.
- Test the temperature of oil by putting in a tiny dropful of batter. If it floats immediately to the top and is sizzling, you can begin the process of making vada(i)s.
Shaping, Frying the Vada(i)s
- You can use the flat side of a ziploc bag, dab it with oil and drop 2 Tbsp. of coarse batter, flatten to get a round disc and gently slide it the oil.
- Or the method I prefer, is to use my fingers and palms to shape the flattened discs and slide them gently in oil.
- Fry in medium high heat about 6-8 in batch or so. The discs are about 2-3 inches in diameter.
- Fry these in medium high heat to a nice even brown. Do not fry in very high heat. If you do so, the outer layer will get cooked faster than the inner one and it is not something you will relish!
- Enjoy with a hot cup of tea and the mush awaited book of your choice!