Paruppu vadai also known as chana dal vadai is a deep fried snack made with chana dal. This is a No onion, No garlic recipe and made especially during festivities.
Many prefer urad dal vadai to the chana dal vadai, as the latter turns a bit dry, if not made properly. I totally agree with the above statement. I also hated paruppu vadai , amma used to make only 4 or 5 just as offering/neivedhiyam for the poojai. There were no takers for the paruppu vadai and she would make it into something the same evening.
If you are looking for a masala vadai with onion and other spices, check this cabbage masala vadai. These vadai are best with tea on a laid-back weekend evening.
Later, she came up with a trick to make the delicious and crispiest chana dal vada that no can resisit. Her vadai is so popular in our apartment and she would carefully pack and send some for her colony friends.
What is the secret ingredient?
- Amma adds a handful of almonds when she soaks chana dal for the vadai.
- The dal should be soaked well and must be ground with almost no water.
- The batter shouldn’t be ground very smooth. There should little coarse bits of dal in the batter.
- While shaping the vadai, make sure you make it thin and not thick vadai.
- Finally be patient while frying, keep the oil at medium heat. Do not crowd the pan while deep frying the vadai.
How to make Kadalai Paruppu Vadai
The chana dal/kadalai paruppu has to be well soaked. i usually soak it for 3-4 hours. If making the vadai for a festivity at home, the trick is to soak the dal, as soon as you enter the kitchen to begin the day’s cooking.
I soak around 10 almonds for 1 cup of chana dal and 5-6 nos red chilies with the dal. The chili numbers depend upon how spicy you prefer your vadai. Both my kids love to munch on these crispy chana dal vadai, so i keep the spice medium.
After 3 -4 hours of soaking, drain all the water, add curry leaves, coriander leaves to the dal, grind it close to fine batter. Do not grind it smooth, we need a bit of crunch and crisp.
Heat the oil and when it reaches the correct temperature, start frying the vadai. We do not use any kind of thermometer to check the temperature of oil, just drop a small amount of vadai batter into hot oil, when it sizzles and raises up, then the oil is ready. So convenient isn’t?
When the oil is ready, keep the gas stove in medium and start frying the vadai. Deep fry them in batches, i fry 4 at a time. Shape them thin, drop them in to hot oil, do not disturb the vadai immediately, let it sit for a 30 seconds undisturbed.
After a minute, stir the oil for the vadai to separate and cook well on both sides to golden brown. Remove the vadai with a slotted spoon and drain on a kitchen towel. Enjoy the yummiest and crispiest kadalai paruppu vadai you have ever tasted.
Paruppu Vadai|How to make Paruppu Vadai
- Indian style mixie or any heavy blender for grinding the vada batter
- Heavy pan for deep frying
- 1 cup Kadalai Paruppu/chana dal
- 10 nos almonds see notes for alternatives
- 6 nos red chilies i used round variety
- ½ tsp hing/asafoetida
- a sprig of curry leaf
- few coriander leaves
- ¾ tsp salt or to taste
- 1 tsp ghee/hot oil
- Oil for deep frying the vadai any vegetable oil, i used sunflower oil
- Wash the chana dal twice in running water and then soak it in water along with almonds and red chilies in water for 3-4 hours. Hydrating the dal is very important, to get good vadai.
- After the said time, drain all the water from the dal. Take the dal along with the soaked almond and red chilies, in a mixer. Add curry leaves and coriander leaves to the dal. Grind it to a almost smooth batter without adding any water.
- Do not operate the mixie continuously. Pulse and grind. If you feel the mixture is getting too dry, add 2 tsps of water at a time and grind again. Remember not to grind the batter smooth. We need little bits and pieces of broken dal here and there.
- Transfer the dal to another bowl. Add hing and salt to the batter and mix it well with your hands. Add a tsp of ghee or hot oil to the batter and mix. I have missed this step while making vadai, though this didn't change the texture or taste of the vadai, amma says it will keep the vadai crisp and palatable for long time.
- Heat oil in a heavy bottom pan. When the oil is hot, drop a small round of batter in to the hot oil, when it sizzles up immediately, then the oil is ready for frying
- Wet your left palm, and take a small lemon sized batter in a right palm, place it on the left palm and shape it into a circle. Make sure the circle is thin and in round shape. Transfer the shaped vadai in to your right palm and slide it slowly into hot oil. Take care while doing so.
- Fry them in batches, i did 4 at at time. Let the dropped vadai sit for a 30 seconds untouched, then stir the oil with a slotted spoon, let the cook golden brown on both sides.
- Remove the vadai with a slotted spoon and drain them on a paper towel. Enjoy the vadai with hot cup of coffee/tea.
- The above measurements give 15-18 vadai, when shaped thin and the correct size.
- If you are allergic to nuts, you can use 1-2 tbsp of urad dal in place of almonds while soaking.
- I have used 6 nos red chillies in the recipe, it depends on your spice level. Both my kids enjoy the vadai, so i keep it medium spiced.
- Do not overcrowd the pan while deep-frying the vadai. Keep the flame in medium.
Enjoy these deep fried snack with a cup of coffee or tea. They taste better when served hot straight from the pan.
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