Savory Lentil Doughnuts (Medu Vada / Urad Vada)
Vada is a crispy Indian snack, prepared especially during auspicious occasions. When I was a kid, I used to eagerly wait for these special occasions especially because that is when my mom usually prepares this yummy snack.

Ingredients: (to make approximately 20 vadas)

black gram (urad dal) - 1 cup
split yellow mung bean (moong dal) - 1/2 cup
green chillies - 3
curry leaves - 1 stalk (chopped)
ginger paste - 1/2 tsp (or ginger - 1 inch piece - peeled)
salt - a little more than 1 tsp (adjust according to taste)
baking soda - 1/4 tsp
oil for deep frying


Soak black gram and mung beans overnight in plenty of water. Drain and grind coarsely into a thick paste, with minimal necessary water, along with the remaining ingredients, except curry leaves. Then add chopped curry leaves and beat till fluffy. Take a tablespoonful of batter on an oiled plastic sheet, make a hole in the center and deep fry till golden brown.

1. For a quick turnaround, the black gram and mung beans can be soaked in warm water for about an hour, if there is not enough time to soak overnight.
2. If you like the vada to be soft instead of crispy, as the ones used for preparing dahi vada, replace mung beans with additional black gram and grind the batter to a smooth paste.
3. When the batter is ground coarsely, the vada comes out crispy.
4. Excess water while grinding the batter causes the vada to absorb too much oil.
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