Thursday, October 8, 2009

Urad Daal Vadaa (Biskut Aambado)

Biscut Aambado is a popular Konkani snack cum breakfast item. Its is lavishly prepared during weddings, pooja ceremonies, birthdays and marks the sign of celebration in my home. Biscut Aambado is my father's favorite. He can simply give in to multiple helpings of this dish and yet be not too satisfied. It has the shape which is usually round hence Aambado and is crispy like a Biscuit, but its pronounced as Biscut Aambado (Bis-kuut - Aam-bado). Served with chutney, these Vaadas should be consumed hot and straight from the stove. Mom makes amazing Vadaa and I love sitting next to the stove and consuming them one by one. Her crust is very crispy with a crunchy feel to it and the core is extremely soft and well cooked always.

Manglorean Konkani Biscut Aambado is very similar to Uddin Vada or Medu Vada. My Mumbai friend used to call it as Medu Vadaa and my friend from Bangalore and Chennai would address as Uddin Vadai. At one time I got confused with all the fancy nomenclature, later was ushered into the facts by my Mom. Mom's seem to have all the answers, don't they? My Pacchi (aunty in Konkani language) asked me to do it like a doughnut (with a hole in the centre); I was too happy to make it my way because the doughnut shape requires skill and a dextrous hand; leave it if its a doughnutty-shaped or simple round, albeit closer to it, I am happy as long as its good and crispy. Udupi's Mitra Samaj - a nice restaurant based out of Udupi serving authetic Konkani South Canara snacks sells one of the most delicious Aambado's I have ever eaten. I found one nice article on Outlook India describing the tasty treats of Mitra Samaj, please click here to read it. They are also famous for their Goli Bajey - a konkani snack made of refined flour, gram flour and green chillies.

Preparation Time ~ 30 minutes
Serves ~ 20-25 Aambado (small sized)

Urad Dal (Whole white Urad Daal, without skin) - 1 cup
Green Chillies - 2 (chopped)
Grated coconut - 2-4 teaspoons
Coconut meat pieces (called as Kaatley in Konkani) - 2 teaspoons
Curry leaves (chopped) - 4-6
Ginger (minced) - 1 teaspoon
Salt - As per taste
Oil - For frying

Soak Urad daal in water after multiple wash for 3-4 hours. Grind to a paste with very less water or no water (as desired). I added few tablespoons of water for grinding consistency. The paste should be thick and not runny. Add minced ginger, coconut both grated and pieces, curry leaves, green chillies and salt.
Heat oil in a thick bottomed pan. Check for heat by frying a small ball of dough first. If done, then pour ping-pong ball sized scoops of the mixture one by one. Transfer off heat to a paper towel once they are golden brown and have a crispy shell and a cooked core. Serve with chutney of your choice.

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