Medu vada recipe with step by step photos – Crispy, fluffy and delicious vada that goes very well with coconut chutney or sambar. These urad dal vada are also known as Garelu in Andhra, Uzhunnu Vada in Kerala and Medhu Vadai in Tamil Nadu.
These doughnuts shaped fritters are made with black gram, herbs, coconut and spices. Even though the main ingredient is urad dal (black gram) but the herbs and spices can vary. You can also add vegetables like onions or grated carrots or grated beetroot.
Medu vada is one of my favorite snack. It is one snack I loved as a kid and still do. I especially like the crispy and fluffy medu vada dunked in hot sambar with coconut chutney by the side.
The combo of vada sambar with coconut chutney is very famous and tastes awesome. You can enjoy them with any variety of sambar.
Whenever we would go to any Udupi or Kerala restaurants in Mumbai, I would order either vada sambar or Masala dosa. these two were always on my top list of South Indian snacks.
I love all South Indian snacks and back with mom and dad, I am having a good time to have my favorite South Indian breakfast tiffin snacks like dosa, Rava dosa, Appam and of course my top favorite these urad dal vada.
Mom made this for brunch and I happily captured the pics. We had medu vada with the sambar and coconut chutney.
Medhu Vadai is one of the easiest snacks to make. If you have leftover sambar and don’t know what to do… Just make the Medu vada… Dip into the sambar and enjoy…
If there is no sambar, then too you can have the Medu vada with coconut chutney or even with mint coriander chutney or tomato sauce. You could use any dip of your choice… May be even a tahini dip or any cheesy dip will be great.
How to make medu vada
1. Soak 2 cups urad dal (husked and split black gram) for 4 to 5 hours. You could also soak them overnight.
2. Later drain the water. Add the soaked urad dal in a grinder jar. Add 2 to 3 tablespoon water or as required. But just make sure that not to make the batter very thin. You can grind in parts and add water as required.
3. Grind the urad dal to a smooth batter. The batter should be fluffy, thick and not liquidy. A quick tip is to add a few drops of batter in a bowl of water. The batter drops should float. If they float and do not get dissolved, then that’s the right consistency. if the batter becomes watery or thin, then the instant relief would be to add some semolina or urad dal flour to it. Otherwise also you could add some semolina to the batter. But best is to have the right consistency of the batter.
4. Remove the batter into a big bowl or vessel.
Making medu vada batter
5. Measure and keep all the ingredients ready for making the batter.
6. To the batter, add ⅓ cup finely chopped onion, 1 or 2 sprig of curry leaves (chopped) and 2 to 3 tablespoons of chopped coriander leaves (optional).
7. Next add 1 or 2 finely chopped green chilies, 1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger and ⅓ cup chopped fresh coconut pieces (optional).
8. Also add 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, 1 teaspoon crushed black peppercorns and salt as required. The addition of black pepper gives a good taste but its optional and you can skip adding it.
9. Mix the batter well with the herbs, spices and salt. You do not have to ferment the batter. You can use it right away.
10. Take a bowl of water. Apply some water from the bowl on both your hands.
11. Take some batter in your right hand from the bowl. Give it a round shape.
12. With your thumb make a hole in the center. You can also use banana leaves or zip lock bags to give the medu vada its doughnut shape.
Frying Medhu Vadai
13. In a kadai heat oil. Keep the flame to medium. Once the oil becomes hot, Slid the medu vada into the hot oil. if you really do not care about the appearance of the doughnut shape of the medu vada, then just drop spoonfuls of the batter directly in the oil.
14. Once the vada are slightly golden then gently turn over with a slotted spoon and continue to fry.
15. Fry the medhu vadai till crisp and golden. the oil should be not very hot, but medium hot. you want the vadas to be cooked from inside. very hot oil will quickly brown the vadas from outside but they will remain uncooked from inside. Less hot oil will make the vada to absorb too much oil. Even if the batter is thin then also the vada will absorb too much oil.
16. Once the medhu vadai is crisp and golden, then remove with a slotted spoon draining the extra oil. Fry the rest of vadas in the same manner.
17. Drain them on kitchen tissues to remove extra oil.
18. Serve medu vada hot or warm with sambar and coconut chutney. enjoy.
More South Indian snacks
Medu Vada (Uzhunnu Vada)
- 2 cups urad dal (husked & split black gram)
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon black peppercorns, whole or crushed (optional)
- 1 or 2 sprig curry leaves, chopped
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped (optional)
- 1 or 2 green chilies, chopped
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger
- ⅓ cup chopped coconut pieces, optional
- few sprigs of coriander leaves, chopped (optional)
- salt to taste
- oil for deep frying
- some water if needed to grind the batter
making medu vada batter
- Soak the urad dal for 4 hours or overnight.
- Grind the soaked dal to a smooth batter with little water if required.
- If the batter becomes watery, then the instant relief would be to add some semolina or urad dal flour to it. Otherwise also you could add some semolina to the batter.
- Add the spices, herbs, onions and salt. Mix well.
- Take a bowl of water. Apply some water from the bowl on both your hands. take some batter in your right hand from the bowl. Give it a round shape.
- With your thumb make a hole in the center. You can also use banana leaves or zip lock bags to give the medu vada its doughnut shape.
making medu vada
- In a kadai heat oil. Keep the flame to medium.
- Once the oil becomes hot, slid the vada into the hot oil.
- Once the vada is slightly golden then gently turn over with a slotted spoon and continue to fry.
- Fry them till crisp and golden. The oil should be not very hot, but medium hot. You want the vadas to be cooked from inside. Very hot oil will quickly brown the vadas from outside but they will remain uncooked from inside. Less hot oil will make the medu vada to absorb too much oil. Even if the batter is thin then also the medu vadas will absorb too much oil.
- Fry all the medu vada this way till they become evenly browned and crisp.
- Drain them on kitchen tissue to remove excess oil.
- Serve the medhu vadai, hot or warm with sambar and coconut chutney.
- When making medu vada for fasting, then don't add onions.