Give me a good rainy day, especially during the summer monsoon season, and the best snack my mother would make was any one of these deep fried favorites: Bajji, Vada, or Pakodi.
While I love to cook, I am less enthusiastic of making anything that remotely feels unhealthy such as deep fried food. Don’t get me wrong, I do love my french fries with my vegeburger or that occasional onion rings.
While I wondered about it, I never tried to bake my bajjis or vadas, so I was recently happy to see that it does work and you can bake them. Here’s how I made mine!
2/3 cup channa dal
1 tbsp brown rice flour
1-2 dry red chilies
a handful of chopped cilantro
1/4 onion chopped
1 inch piece of ginger
salt to taste
Soak the channa dal in water for 3-4 hours. It’s okay if it is more than 24 hours 🙂
Rinse, and set aside a handful of the channa dal. Transfer the rest to the food processor or blender. Add jalapeno, dry red chilli and ginger and process smoothly. It might be necessary to add 1-2 tbsp water. Don’t make it runny.
Add chopped onions, chopped cilantro, set-aside channa dal , and season with salt.
Meanwhile pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
Grease a baking pan generously with oil. Take 1-2 tbsp of batter and scoop out onto the baking pan as if baking cookies.
Bake for 15-20 minutes. Remove the baking pan, flip the vada and transfer back to the oven and continue baking for another 15-20 minutes.
Serve warm with some sweet and sour chutney such as ginger or any chutney for that matter.
It is also good when eaten with ketchup or spicy Maggi sauce :-)
Enjoy with a hot cuppa tea on a rainy or snowy day!