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Masala Vadai

  • Duration: 2 hours 20 min
  • Serves: 4–6 people

Authenticity Slice

Instead of grinding all the soaked lentils, keep a little aside and directly add them to the ground batter. This will add to the crunchiness of the vadai and give them a great texture.

Trivia Tadka

Do you know masala vadai is ingrained so deep in the Tamil culture that there are grandma stories about this dish? The most famous being, “Paatti Sutta Vadai”, the story involving a grandma and a crow. 


  • Husked Bengal gram (chana dal) (1 cup, 200 gms)
  • Onions, finely chopped (2)
  • Green chillies (hari mirch) (4)
  • Ginger (adrak) (1" piece)
  • Salt (1/2 tsp)
  • Curry leaves (kadipatta) (1 sprig, tear roughly)
  • Oil (2 cups for frying)


  • Wash dal and soak it in water for 2 hrs and then drain.
  • Add chillies, ginger and grind to a coarse paste using very less water (3–4 tbsps).
  • Add onions, curry leaves, salt and mix well.
  • Heat oil in a deep frying pan to smoking point.
  • Wet your palms, make a small peda (ball) of batter and flatten it into a 1" round patty using your fingers.
  • Slip it gently into hot oil. Deep fry the vadais in batches over moderate heat, turning frequently till they are golden and crisp in colour.
  • Masala vadais are ready to be served, piping hot with the delicious coconut chutney.

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