Vegetarian Recipies – III

APPETIZERS or STARTERS

 

As the name suggests, these starters whet your appetite and give your buds the extra punch gearing you up for the main entrée.

  

MASALA VADAI

 

Deep fried flat discs of lentil combined with condiments are an indispensable find at any South Indian occasion. Call them vadai or vada, they transport you to another layer with their mesmerizing aroma.

Ingredients

 

Chana dal / Red Gram              – 250 gms

Onion                                      – 2 (small)

Green chillies                           – 1 (big)

Red dry                                    – 2(small)

Coriander leaves                       – 50 gms (finely chopped)

Ginger                                      – 25 gms

Fennel seeds/ Saunf                  – 1 tsp

Asafoetida / Hing                      – 1/2 tsp

Salt to taste

 

Method

 

Soak  chana  dal along with red chillies for just half an hour.

Wash well and strain it, keep aside.

Add ginger and red chillies to it and grind coarsely.

Add finely cut onions, green chillies, coriander leaves,fennel seeds, asafoetida and required amount of salt. Mix well.

Make into round flat pieces by pressing them onto the wet palm of your hands or on a plastic sheet and deep fry.

 

It can be had with coconut chutney or even ketchup.

 

PAKODA

Onions or vegetables coated in gram flour and condiments and spread as fritters into oil are handy alternatives available to serve unexpected arrivals. A tinge of softness and crunchiness in every bite, these pakoras or pakodas are an instant hit among diverse groups.

Ingredients

Besan flour(Gram flour)         – 150gms

Rice flour                              – 50gms

Onions                                  – 3 (big onions)

Ginger                                  -1 tbsp (Finely chopped)

Coriander leaves                   – 4 tbsp (Finely chopped)

Green chillies                       -2 (finely chopped)

Asafoetida / Hing                 – 1tbsp

Fennel seeds / Saunf             -1tbsp

Salt to taste

Method

Cut onions into thin long slices.

Ginger, chillies and coriander leaves have to be finely chopped.

Sieve the besan and rice flour well.

Heat a deep dish pan with oil so that while the batter is being mixed, the oil would get heated to be able to fry the pakodas just on time.

In another container, add both the flour along with salt, ginger, coriander leaves, green chillies, asafoetida and fennel seeds. Mix well.

Add a few spoons of hot oil into the mixture and crumble them well. This would ensure the crispness of the pakodas.

Then add the thin long slices of onions. Add little water and mix well. The consistency should be such that the batter can be spread as fritters into oil and deep fried.

Spoon or pick a lumpful of batter and spread them little by little into the hot oil.

Turn them over once or twice to even the heat on all sides of the pakodas.

When it turns golden brown, remove and spread on plate.

Points to keep in mind

The batter should neither be too loose nor tight.

Red chilli flakes can be added too depending on the spice required.

Onions can even be replaced by capsicums or potatoes. This can be had with ketchup

 

MANGALORE BONDA

Ingredients

Maida         /All Purpose flour    – 6 tbsp

Rice flour                                   – 2 tbsp

Rawa/Sooji/Semolina                 – 1 tbsp

Finely cut onions                       – 2 tbsp

Minced green chillies                 – 1 tbsp

Coriander leaves                        – 2 tbsp

Cooking soda                            – 1 pinch

Thick sour curds                  – as needed to hold the dough.

Oil for frying

Salt as required

Method

Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl.

Keep covered for at least 3 hours.

Add soda just before frying.

Heat oil, make medium sized balls and fry till golden brown.

Points to keep in mind

Do not over fry bondas. A light golden brown would ensure softness and crispness.

Use just required curds to hold the dough.

As a variation, chopped greens can be added before frying.

 

MOONG DAL VADAI

Ingredients

Moong dal                               – 6 tbsp

Raw rice                                  – 2 tbsp

Ginger                                     – 1 tbsp minced

Green chillies                           -1 tbsp chopped

Asofoetida         /Hing             – 1tsp

Red chilly(Dry)                       – 1big

Coriander leaves                      – 2 tbsp (chopped)

Salt to taste

Oil for frying

Method

Soak moong dal and rice for half an hour along with red chilly.

Grind coarsely with just enough water. It should not become soggy.

Add green chillies, ginger, asafoetida and coriander leaves along with salt.

Heat oil in a pan and divide the batter into small flat balls and deep fry until golden brown.