Vada Pav Recipe

Remember the recipe for Batata Vada I posted last time? The popular sinfully good spiced potato patty which is deep fried and the one we relished?  Well as if that indulgence was not good enough, we took it to the next level and enjoyed even more. We re-created the street food magic at home and ate them as as Vada Paav. 

Vada Paav is a popular street food in Mumbai. It is an Indianised version of vegetarian burgers. The vada called as Batata Vada (burger) is a spicy potato filling, dipped in gram flour batter and then deep fried. This is then placed inside a small square bun (called Paav) smeared along with green and garlic chutney and eaten as is. Hence the name Vada Pav for this dish. 

 This is a burger on the go, and since everything fits in compactly there is no fear of spilling or smearing things around. This makes a very appetizing and a filling snack. 

Of course, you can eat the Aloo Bonda as is, which is just as blissful. And if you have any doubts about stuffing this in dry bread, then let me tell you that two types of chutney’s that are smeared on the bread make this appetizing. Do give this a try (if you have not already tried it) and you will be in for a pleasant surprise. 

As I have mentioned before, along with the Batata Vada, we will also need to prepare two chutneys before processing with the assembly.

Spicy Coriander Chutney: 

This is versatile chutney and can be used as accompaniment along with several other dishes like Dhokla, Bhel Puri, bhajjis, Batata Vada. It is prepared using fresh coriander and mint leaves, along with green chillies, cumin seeds, lemon and sugar. It is very spicy, tangy and little goes a long way while using this.

Ingredients: 

  • 2 cups cilantro/coriander (cleaned and stems removed)
  • ½ cup mint leaves/pudina (cleaned and stems removed)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 3-4 green chillies
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • Juice of one lemon
  • salt

Method:

  • Combine all the ingredients and run it in the blender, adding very little water. Transfer it to a bowl.

 


Cute Batata Vada

Peanut Garlic chutney: 

This is yet another spicy but dry chutney made out of garlic, peanuts and red chilli powder. The pungent flavor of garlic, along with peanuts adds crunch and enhances the taste even more. 

Ingredients 

  • 5 cloves of garlic ( peeled)
  • ¾ cup roasted peanuts (skin removed)
  • 1  tsp dry red chilli powder
  • Salt to taste 

Method 

  • Add the peanuts in a blender and pulse it. Next add the chilli powder, garlic and salt and blend until combined.
  • This is a coarse chutney and do not add any water to this. Transfer to a bowl.

Assembly of Vada Pav

First gather all the ingredients required to make the Vada Paav.

  • Pav buns/ Laadi Paav (as required) [ small square bread rolls, substitute with hamburger buns or bread rolls or even regular sandwich bread]
  • Peanut Garlic Chutney
  • Spicy Green Chutney
  • Batata Vada (make sure they are hot)
  • Chopped onion rings
  • Lemon pieces

Method: 

  • First take one square of the paav buns and cut it horizontally ¾ of the way.
  • Note: You can roast this bread in little butter for taste, but that is optional.

  • Spread some dry garlic chutney on one half of the bread and green chutney on the other half evenly.
  • Place one Batata Vada inside the sliced pav and squeeze some lemon juice over it
  • Top this with the chopped onion rings and add more dry garlic chutney if required.
  • Close the bread and gently smash the batata vada.

    Bite into this goodness and rejoice!

Aloo Bonda /Batata Vada


After the scorching summer we had here, the weather has taken a U turn and turned into a mild, pleasant one, reminiscent of the autumn season. Added to this it got cloudy and we had some drizzle over the weekend making it even cooler. There is something about the rain that gives me that cozy, nostalgic feeling. And on days like this, I cannot think of a better way to spend the day than to indulge in some crispy deep fried stuff. The most common deep fried stuff I resort to are these fritters/bhajjis or medu vada. But this time I decided to go for a change and made these deep fried potato vada, called Batata Vada.

 Batata Vada is a popular street food in India, literally called Potato fritters is a deep fried indulgence. Even though this originated in Maharashtra, it is popular all over India and is called as Aloo Bonda in South India. It consists of a spicy potato balls which is then dipped in chick pea flour and then deep-fried. This is usually served with different chutneys along with sautéed green chillies. 

There are many steps for making this dish, but once you get a hang of it, you can organize the process and make it in an efficient manner. This is served as appetizer, an evening snack or when served as Vada Paav which can be indulgent meal in itself. 

Ingredients for the potato stuffing: 

  • 3 big potatoes ( boiled, peeled and mashed)
  • 3-4 curry leaves
  • 1Tbsp ( green chilli+ garlic+ ginger ) coarse paste
  • 3-4 strands coriander leaves
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 1 Tbsp oil
  • Juice of a lemon
  • Salt to taste 

Method

  • Wash the potatoes, chop them into halves and pressure cook them along with the skin.
  • After it has cooled, peel the skin, mash it in a plate and keep aside. It is alright if there are some lumps in the cooked potato.
  • Take a pan and heat oil. Add the curry leaves and the coarse green chilli garlic paste and cook until the garlic turns light brown.
  • Add the mashed potato, turmeric powder, salt and cook until everything is mixed.
  • Cover with lid and let it cook on simmer. Add the chopped coriander leaves and lemon juice, stir well. Keep aside.


Batter/ coating for the vada: 

  • 1/2 cup gram flour (besan)
  • 1 Tbsp rice flour
  • 1tsp red chili powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • Salt to taste

 Method: 

  • Take a bowl and mix all the above ingredients well. The gram flour may have some lumps, so be sure to break them apart.
  • Add water to this mixture in intervals and mixing it well until it becomes a smooth paste.
  • Note: The consistency of the batter is important, so make sure that it is not too thick or thin. Keep aside.

 Making Vada/Bonda: 

  • Heat sufficient oil in a pan for deep frying.
  • In the meanwhile make small balls ( 2-3 inch diameter) from the stuffing that was made before.
  • After the oil is hot, take a stuffing ball; dip the ball into the batter and drop it into the hot oil. Fry it and then turn it around until it gets light golden brown color.
  • Transfer it to a paper towel. Continue the process with the remaining stuffing and make the Aloo Bondas. 

Serve hot (very) with Tomato ketchup or Green chutney or Tamarind Chutney or as is or as Vada Paav (recipe coming up next!).

Instant Besan Dhokla/ Khaman Dhokla Recipe


Khaman Dhokla, a Gujarati traditional dish is a savory snack made out of gram flour. It is steamed (not deep fried) and is typically served during breakfast or dinner. Since it is made out of chickpea flour it is rich in proteins and carbohydrates. Soft, spongy and delicious they also make a great mid-afternoon or tea time snack. 

Years ago I used to buy the readymade Khaman Dhokla mix by Tarla Dalal for making instant dhoklas.  The dhoklas would come out pretty good and had a good flavor and texture. We used to have it as a tea time snack or as a starter when we had guests. But I guess, off late they have stopped making it as I am not able to find them in the grocery shelves anymore. The other brands that I tried do not come close and I was not happy with the results. 

That is why I resorted to finding a good recipe of making Khaman Dhokla from scratch. I tried from couple of sources but this recipe here I liked the best. I made some tweaks of my own, and thise dhokla comes out soft and spongy just as we like it. 

Remember that tadka/seasoning is important and needs to be done the right way. I liked her unique concept of seasoning which is adding the sugar and lemon in the tadka itself. When this is poured over the steamed dhoklas they give it a wonderful sweet, tangy and nutty flavor. 

Recipe Source: Adapted from Archana’s kitchen

 Ingredients:

  • 1 cup gram flour/besan
  • 1/2 cup yogurt/curd/dahi ( I used low fat)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp ginger+green chilli paste
  • 2 Tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp Eno fruit salt
  • Salt to taste 

For tempering 

  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds  (optional)
  • 5-6 curry leaves
  • 2-3 dried red chillies
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 3-4 tsp Oil  

Garnish 

  • 1-2 Tbsp grated coconut
  • 1 Tbsp coriander leaves (chopped) 

Method: 

  • In a big bowl, add the besan, salt, oil, eno fruit salt and mix with spoon. Add the yogurt, water and whisk it well. This batter should be little thick.
  • Heat a pressure cooker with enough water in the bottom. Grease dhokla thalis or a round container that fits in the pressure cooker.
  • Note: I use the round steel vessel that is used for cooking rice in the cooker.
  • Transfer the prepared batter to this until it is 2/3 full. Remember after the dhoklas are steamed they will puff up.
  • Steam for 12 – 15 minutes with lid covered (but without the weight/whistle).
  • After 15 minutes, turn off heat and allow it to rest for 5 minutes in the cooker itself with lid opened. Take it out and keep aside. 

Seasoning/ Tadka 

  • Heat oil in a small pan and add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds and curry leaves. Let the mustard seeds crackle. Add the dried red chillies and turn off the heat.
  • Slowly add the water, sugar, salt and lemon juice to the prepared seasoning.
  • Using a small spoon pour it evenly over the steamed and cooled dhokla. Let it rest for a little while.
  • Cut them into desired shapes square or diamond and garnish with coriander leaves and coconut before serving.