Using cooked or tinned chickpeas, falafels are very easy to make.
Who can resist a good falafel? Wonderful for snacks, meals, in wraps or topping salads, they are wonderfully tasty, textural and healthy. Whip them up using chickpeas you have previously cooked and frozen, for an easy supper.
Home made falafel are a huge cut above store-bought ones, or even those from some restaurants that must purchase them in bulk and keep them frozen for a long time. One has to wonder why, they are so easy to make, whereas many pre-prepared ones taste like cardboard. Who hasn’t had a wrap or roll with cardboard-tasting falafel stuffed into them for a “vegetarian option” when it would have been more flavoursome to leave them out?
Worry no more, we have your back. These are fantastic. Crispy crunchy on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. You can grind the chickpeas coarsely or more finely, which ever is your preference. But they must be ground enough to hold together as fritters.
You might like to also try hummus, which goes well with falafel. Chickpeas make a whole range of dishes. Try Chickpea Fingers, for example (it uses chickpea flour). Or Chickpea “Tabblouleh”. Chickpeas can be baked, or made into a spread, or smashed and made into a salad. They are really healthy – have a look at this article.
Continue reading “Falafel | Ta’amia | Spicy Middle Eastern Chickpea Patties or Balls”
An excellent snack – Kothimbir is the Marathi word for Green Coriander, which is the main ingredient in this recipe. Kothimbir Wada are basically coriander fritters. In this recipe, the chickpea flour batter with coriander leaves is first steamed and then cut into rings to be fried till crisp.
Use really fresh coriander for best results, and serve with chai or coffee. They can also be served as a side dish with a meal.
Vada are traditional Indian dishes. They are commonly prepared at home and as typical street food, being popular tiffin snacks. Wada are generally crisp on the outside and soft inside.
You might like to browse all of our Snacks here and here, and all of our Indian Recipes here. Try our Chai recipes here, or our general Tea recipes here. You might also enjoy Wada recipes, and our Summer recipes here and here.
Continue reading “Kothimbir Wada | Coriander Vada | Coriander Fritters”
A delicious kuzhambu with gram flour dumplings / vadai
Some time ago I had a revelation about Indian food. It is this – European food, and those cuisines that derived from Europe, focus on the vegetables (or meat if you are non veg) as the basis of a dish, and on how to incorporate flavours into the base through the use of herbs, some few spices, browning of ingredients, stocks, sauces etc.
However Indian food is the other way around – the basis of a dish is the spice mix, and the vegetables are the carrier of the spices and add texture. Flavours are deepened through the roasting of spices, the use of oil to enhance and prolong the spice flavours, even spices to thicken liquid components of a dish. When you begin to think this way about Indian food your cooking style will change and many flavours will open up for you.
This dish from Cook and See Part 1 by Meenakshi Ammal typifies this, with 4 different spice combinations added to the dish to create a layered flavour profile. The “sauce” or “gravy” for this dish is just water, tamarind and spices. The texture is created through little balls of besan/gram flour, deep fried into vadai which are dumpling-like.
Continue reading “Masala Kuzhambu with Gram Flour Vadai | S. Meenakshi Ammal”
Wonderful dumplings in spicy gravy
Meenakshi Ammal, my favourite Indian cookbook author, in her chapter on Vatral Kuzhambu, includes wonderful gram flour “dumplings”, like this recipe for Kuzhambu: Masala Kuzhambu with Gram Flour Vadai.
By contrast this recipe, Paruppu Urundai Kuzhambu, uses dal dumplings, or pulse balls made with toor dal. These give the kuzhambu a sambar like feel. The balls are made from soaked and ground toor dal which is then sauteed to par-cook and remove additional moisture before being poached in the Kuzhambu spicy broth.
The balls can be used in a Vatral Kuzhambu base, a rasam base or a moru kuzhambu base.
You might like to try other Kuzhambu recipes here and here, and our Sambar recipes here and here. Explore our Indian recipes here and here. Find inspiration in our Spring recipes here and here.
Continue reading “Lentil Balls in a Spicy Gravy | Paruppu Urundai Kuzhambu | South Indian”
Vada is a common term for many different types of savoury fritter-type snacks from South India. It seems that Vada was popular among ancient Tamils in South India during 100 BCE-300 CE, so they have a long history.
Vada can vary in shape and size, but are usually either doughnut- or disc-shaped between 5 and 8 cm across. They are made from urad gram or chickpeas.
This Vada recipe comes from the Tamil cuisine of Jaffna in Sri Lanka. It is made with steamed wheat flour. You can buy this from your Indian Grocery, but you can also make your own.
You might also like to try Dhal Puttu, Kolache Poha, Mochai Kottai. Browse all of the Indian Snacks. Or explore our Indian recipes here and here. Be inspired by our Summer recipes can be found here and here.
Continue reading “Paruthithurai Vadai | Thattai Vadai | Crunchy Crackers | A Snack from Jaffna, Sri Lanka”