Cooking is not a science but an art, mistakes are okay, messes are fine—the pleasure is in the creating and the sharing of the result.
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Steps of Vada, Sambhar vada and Dahi wada -South Indian style
Soak the whole urad dal- 1 cup for 1 hour in the fridge. Grind in the wet grinder adding 2 red chillies adding the cold water little by little say in a spoon, do not add at once. We need thick batter. Add 1 red onion finely chopped, 2 green chillies, curry leaves, pepper corns-1 tsp, ginger grated 1 tsp, salt, hing(asafoetida).
This is how it looks..
Then Heat oil in a pan and start deep frying the vada. Dilute Sambhar with hot water and dilute curd with water add salt. Soak the fried vada in Diluted Sambhar and Diluted curd for 15 to 20 mts. This is to make the vada absorb sambhar and curd and remove excess oil. Then drop them in Sambhar and curd respectively.
Grinding a couple of red chillies while grinding the batter yields a bright color vada. This is my Mom's tip.
For dhein vado, as we call it in Sourashtra, grind 2 tbsp of coconut, 2 green chillies and 1 tsp of cumin seeds with small piece of ginger. Add this to the curd and to this add soaked vada. I learnt this from Chitra mami of Indusladies fame. I learned the tip of soaking the vada in diluted sambhar and curd from a TV show of Mrs. Revathy Shanmugam.
My sincere thanks to Saravanan dha for giving me the recipe. This one is sure hit. I am still amazed about the taste as this has no onion, tomato nor ginger garlic but the aroma is so distinct and delicious.
Here goes the recipe: Parboil 4 medium size potatoes in water adding salt. Do not overcook the potatoes. cube them. Deep fry the cubed potatoes in mix of oil and ghee(1/2 and 1/2) to golden brown. Transfer all the oil into a cup and heat say 3 tbsp of oil ghee mix, to this add coriander, cumin, chilli powder and garam masala powders(1 tbsp, 1/2 tbsp, 1 tbsp or more-suit your spice level, a pinch respectively). Do not brown them add 2 cups of water and required salt. Allow it to boil for 5 mts. Add the fried potatoes to this. Cook this on a medium flame for 5 mts and simmer to reduce. You may go wrong at these places: 1. over cooking the potatoes resulting in a soggy curry 2. browing the masalas resulting in a bitter curry If taken care you will end with a delicious dish.
Cut grapefruit into quarters and pressure cook with salt.
Dry roast mustard seeds, methi seeds, red chillies and powder it.
Add this to the cooled grapefruit.
Heat 1/2 cup of oil and let cool.
Add it to the pickle.