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Masala vada, Masal vadai step by step recipe

masala vada

Masala vada, learn how to make a flavorful, crispy outside, soft from inside masal vadai with step by step photos.

I rarely make masala vada as I am not confident making these. In particular, we, in our families make plain paruppu vadai in which we don’t add garlic, mint leaves or even fennel. We make it in a different way, when compared to the tea shop version. So when ever I cross any tea shops, the smell of these masal vadais will be mesmerizing. I will keep wondering what could be the flavor factor.

Once, one of my grandpa bought a masal vadai in Chidambaram Bus stand tea shop. Obviously, I loved it a lot. Was very young then, only around 12 or something, still remembering that vadai. In particular, it was as big as our palm size and had lots of onion and veggies too like carrot, peas. Superb vadais.

masal vadai

Secret for a flavorful masala vada

After I started cooking only made few times, but the paruppu vadai version. Once, I asked one of my friend about the flavorful perfect masala vada recipe. She said, pudina(mint leaves) and crushed garlic and fennel does the magic. So tried few times that way and loved the flavor! Finally, I made it to blog the recipe. Vj doesn’t like fennel so I reserved some batter for him without fennel.

Fennel seeds, ginger garlic and mint makes the magic.

How to make the most flavorful, crisp vada?

Firstly, soak chana dal (bengal gram) and grind it coarsely. Then mix with onion, chilli, herbs like mint, coriander, ginger and garlic along with spices to make the mixture. And, shape it as patties with thin outer edge and thick at the center. Finally, deep fry it few per batches to get soft inside, crispy outside masala vadai.


  • Use red chilli instead of green chilli.
  • Ginger garlic paste can be added instead of grinding fresh.
  • Skip ginger or garlic and use only one in either of it.

Masala vada

Masala vada, learn how to make a flavorful, crispy outside, soft from inside masala vadai with step by step photos.

Cup measurements


  • 1 cup Chana dal/ kadalai parupu
  • 1 tablespoon Rice flour/ raw rice
  • 1 Onion
  • 5 Green chillies Medium spicy
  • 1 teaspoon Fennel/ soambu
  • 2 tablespoon Coriander leaves chopped
  • 2 tablespoon Mint leaves
  • Salt
  • 1 sprig Curry leaves
  • 1 inch Ginger piece
  • 5 Garlic cloves