Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Sabudana Vada/ Tapioca Fritters

If you've been following my posts lately, they have a common thread tying them together. 

Monsoons. The Rains, the continuous down pour, the gray skies, the gloomy weather, all of it called only for one thing- comfort food. 

When it used to rain outside, as a child I would either to go out n play in the puddles or I used to curl up in a corner near the window and read a book. Ahhh.... along with that reading time, there used to be this delightful plate of some kind of fried fritters that my mum would so lovingly make. That is how I started associating rains with that warm crispiness. The crunchy, nutty textures, spicy aromas made me feel brighter and well, lets just admit it, who doesn't like something fried! No wonder they call it comfort food. On top of everything a hot Cuppa would just make my day absolutely ideal. 

So today, when the clouds were thick and dark and no sunlight was peeking in, I was in dire need of something that would make my day a little more cheerful. 

Side note: I really should stop relying on food for comfort. 

Sabudana Vada or tapioca fritters was my choice of snack for the evening. Spiced with simple Indian spices, these fritters are a very popular street-food, especially in Gujarat and Maharashtra. Served with a spicy green chutney or even some ketchup makes for a very delicious snack. This recipe can be easily halved or doubled. I served this with The Blushing Mojito today. Usually we have a hot cup of cardamom tea with the vadas




Makes: 16-18 Vadas

Time taken: 30 min + soaking time

Complexity: **

You'll need

1 1/2 cups tapioca or sabudana
3/4 cup water
1 1/2 cup boiled and mashed potatoes
2 green chilies, sliced thinly (with seeds- optional) 
few stems coriander leaves
1/2 cup roasted, coarsely ground peanuts
juice of 1 lemon
salt to taste
1 tsp red chili powder
1 1/2" pc of ginger grated
5-6 garlic cloves grated
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp garam masala 
Pinch of love
oil for frying


Method

Sabudana needs to be soaked in water for about 2 hours for it to soften up. Take a large bowl and add the sabudana to it



Add in the water. Let it soak for about 2 hours. Cover it and set it aside



After 2 hours, the little tapioca will have bloomed and swollen up in size. They would be soft to touch and quite squishy, so very gently, just run a spoon along them to separate any chunks that have formed just like you fluff up the rice. 


Grate the ginger and garlic over the tapioca and thinly slice the green chilies over it too. I like the hum of heat running through these, thats what makes these so deeelish! 



Add in the salt and chili powder



As usual, freshly roast the cumin and coarsely grind it with a mortar and pestle for an intense impact



Add that and the coriander powder to the mix




Next take some peanuts and dry roast them till they are golden. We want to coarsely grind these as well



Here they are, all ground up. 



Add that too in the bowl



Top it off with some garam masala



Squeeze the lemon juice over it, here's me using the squeeze-y thingie



Now is the time to add in those mashed potatoes. I just roughly crumbled the boiled potatoes with my clean bare hands



Add in that fresh green coriander and start to combine everything with a wooden spoon or better still your hands. 



Once combined, it should look like this.... a crumbly dough like mix that comes together when pressed and takes shape of a ball



Take a soup spoon and start making small portions of that mix. Flatten those balls in a patty shape like so. The tapioca tends to puff up and grow in size when fried, so try and keep these thinner than usual and smaller too




Meanwhile, have your oil in the wok heating on medium heat for atleast 4-5 minutes till the oils starts to shimmer. Add in the patty one by one very carefully. They will first sink down completely to the bottom. The oil will be bubbling furiously, stay extra safe



Once they start to cook, they will float up like this




Let them fry till they are a golden brown colour. Remove from oil and drain on kitchen napkins



To serve, you have options of ketchup and mint chutney. 



How delightful they are!! 



Sunny, really! That crunch, that crispy texture, that nuttiness from the peanuts and that spicy green chili inside... how I love it!


The little pearl like beads so beautifully golden and tempting



I had 4 of these and I was sooo happy, not proud of it, but sooooooo happy!! 



Curled up reading my Bridges of Madison County for the 24037th time and my Chai and these vadas..... life is beautiful! Indulge!