I am a total Snacks/Junk food person. In fact this is one of the major things I miss about India. Availability of any type of snacks you want within a few minutes. Wada Pav, Samosa, Bhel, Sev Puri, Pani Puri, Dhabeli, Pav Bhaji, Sandwiches...the list is endless & so is the variety. I still remember this particular sandwichwalla near my office in Worli who carries a mobile phone. Whenever we were hungry or just felt like having some sandwiches, all we needed to do was call him with our preferences & he would be there in 15 minutes with the goodies! I had specific places where I liked all these junk food items. Patel's Pani Puri, Mahaveer's Samosa also Gurukripa, Anna's Dosa, Wada Pav outside the King George School, Dhabeli in Ghatkopar(E) and so on.
*Sigh* Those were the days .....
Now If I have one of those urges to have any of the above, I have to make them at home myself or go looking for it all over London. Nothing tastes as it should even if you manage to find what you want. Then I start thinking about everything I am going to sample the next time I am in India....
So here's one of the numerous delicacies that I crave for :)
The best part about this is that when you plan to make this, you automatically have two things ready. I always start out with Medu wada with coconut chutney & sambhar for a weekend breakfast and then make Dahi wada for an evening snack.
Makes about 10-12 wadas (If you want more, just increase the qty of Urad Dal)
1 cup Urad dal
Crushed Black pepper
2-3 cups Curd
1-2 pinches kala namak (Rock Salt)
1 tsp red chili powder
2 tsps roasted jeera (cumin) powder
2 tsps sugar
Oil for frying
Soak the dal for about 2 hours. Grind it to get a batter similar to that of Medu wada using as little water as possible. Add a little salt & crushed black pepper & mix. Now you can either fry it by making small balls with your hands or by dropping the batter with a tablespoon in the oil. If the batter is quite thick, I would recommend doing it by hand as the wadas will then have a nice round shape. Fry all the wadas and keep aside.
In a Bowl take the curd and whisk it without adding any water. Add the salt, kala namak, chili powder, jeera powder & sugar and mix properly.
Now take the wadas and immerse in warm water for 3-4 minutes & then squeeze out the water. This will soften the wadas and also help to get rid of the excess oil (No, keeping it longer in the water will not take away more oil, rather the wadas will become too soft & might crumble).
Add the wadas to the prepared curd and keep it in the refrigerator.
To serve, scoop out the wadas on to a bowl & add some of the curd. Sprinkle a little kala namak, jeera powder & chili powder. Add some tamarind chutney & coriander/mint chutney.
I didn't have any of those chutneys and we were too hungry to spend time making them so we managed without them but the result was just as delicious.