Malgudi Days

Chana Dal Vadai

Chana Dal Vadai

Chana Dal Vadai

Contributed by Tanvi @sinfullyspicy


Ingredients (makes 8-10 vadai)

  • ½ cup Chana lentils (Bengal gram)
  • 2 tbsp split white urad lentils
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion
  • 1 inch ginger finely chopped, optional
  • 1 or 2 green chilies, chopped (adjust to taste)
  • 8 to 10 curry leaves,chopped
  • 2 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil for deep frying



  • Rinse lentils a couple of times in water and soak them in about 1.5 cups water for 2 hours.
  • Drain the soaked lentils very well. There should be no water in the lentils. 
  • Without adding any water, grind the lentils to a coarse mixture. Some whole chana dal should be visible in the mixture. If you add water, then it becomes difficult to shape the vadai but if you are not able to grind at all, then add 1 to 2 tablespoons water and then grind.
  • Transfer ground lentils to a bowl and add onion, green chilies, ginger, curry leaves and coriander leaves. Season with salt. Mix well with hands. Check the taste and adjust salt if needed.
  • Oil your palms and make small or medium sized balls from the mixture.
  • Flatten them, shape them using hands and place them on a plate. Ypu should get 8-10 vadai out of the batter.
  • Heat up oil for deep-frying in a wok or a deep cast iron pan (about 3” inch oil) on medium flame.
  • Check the oil temperature by dropping a small portion of the batter in the oil. If the batter comes up steadily & quickly, the oil is hot enough for frying.
  • Carefully slide the prepared dal vadai in the hot oil. You may use spatula to do so. Fry 3 or 4 vadai only at a time.
  • Fry them for a couple of minutes and then turn over with a slotted spoon and fry the other side. Adjust the flame while frying if the oil becomes too hot.
  • Fry till the vadai become golden and crisp. Takes about 6-8 minutes on medium low heat, the onions on the crust of the vada look golden, it’s a good indicator.
  • Drain excess oil on a paper towel .
  • Fry up the remaining dal vadai this way in batches.
  • Serve the coconut chutney or tomato chutney.

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