Batata vada or potato vada is the most common snack of Maharashtra. It is usually eaten with a Pav (bread) and called as 'Vada Pav'.I have just given the recipe for making vadas. If you want to make the 'Vada pav', just put the vadas in between a pav (bread) and enjoy it with garlic chutney and salted green chillies.
There are quite a few variations to prepare the potato stuffing. I like to season with spices, chopped onions and ginger garlic paste before combining with mashed potatoes
6-8 medium sized boiled potatoes
1 small piece ginger
4-5 flakes garlic
4-5 (or more) green chilies,
1/2 cup coriander leaves (chopped)
1 small onion (finely chopped)
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
8-10 curry leaves (optional)
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1 tbsp oil
2 cups gram flour (besan)
approx. 1 cup water
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp chili powder(optional)
salt to taste
oil for frying
- Grind ginger, garlic and green chilies together into a paste.
- Peel and mash potatoes with a potato masher (or simply use hand). Do not mash completely. Let some small chunks remain.
- Add ginger, garlic and green chili paste, coriander leaves, chopped onions and salt to the potatoes.
- Put 1 tbsp oil in a pan/kadai. Add mustard seeds. When they splutter, add turmeric powder and curry leaves. Pour this tempering over the mashed potatoes and mix gently.
- Make small flatballs of mashed potato mixture.
- Add some salt, turmeric powder and chili powder to the gram flour. Add water gradually and keep mixing with a spoon or wire whisk. Remove lumps if any. The batter should not be too watery or too thick. If lifted by a spatula, it should flow in a ribbon like consistency.
- Heat some oil in a pan. To check if oil is heated enough, drop some batter in the oil. If the batter immediately floats on the surface of the oil, the oil is ready. Also make sure that the oil is not too hot. Else, the vadas turn dark from the outside before they are actually done from the inside.
- Now dip each ball in the batter, letting the excess batter drip off and slowly add to the hot oil. Do not overcrowd the pan, or the temperature of the oil reduces which in turn slows down the frying process. Like this, fry all the vadas until golden. Remove on a paper towel and drain. Batata Vadas are ready.