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Spinach(Keerai) Vadai

Posted By Vardhini On June 19, 2011 @ 6:23 am In Appetizers,Blogging Marathon,Indian,Kid Friendly,Snacks | 34 Comments

Friends, I have added two pages which show the running roundup of the Dish it Out and HLI – Broccoli and I will update it as I receive entries.

Today is Day 4 of the blogging marathon and my theme is ‘Tamil Nadu’ specials. Vadai is basically a deep fried snack and there are many versions of it based on the ingredients. We have medhu vadai, which is made with urad dal and is soft and it is made for most festivals. Lunch on a festival day usually consists of sambar, ven pongal, medhu vadai, potato fry and payasam. Another version is the crunchy vadai which is made with channa dal, onion and spices. We can add any vegetable like spinach, cabbage, etc. to vadai and it is sure to become everyone’s favorite.

Now how can I not post vadai when it is ‘Tamil Nadu’ special? I decided to make keerai vadai for a change. Oh, well the actual reason was that I had this huge bag of spinach from Costco and it had to be used up. It was a super hit and my 6 yr old had a blast. It has spinach, but is deep fried. Can we still consider it healthy!!? Well I am going to forget the deep fried part for a little bit and enjoy the snack. We can always workout later right? So let us get started.

4 cups fresh spinach packed
1 small onion chopped
Oil to deep fry

To Grind
3/4 cup urad dal
1/4 cup channa dal
2 red chillies
2 green chillies
1 tsp fennel seeds

Soak the urad dal and channa dal for about 2 hours. Take a handful of the soaked urad dal and keep aside to add later. This adds crunchiness to the vadai.

To the soaked dals add chillies, salt and fennel seeds.

Grind coarsely.

Chop the spinach into small pieces. I normally use a food processor. Make sure that the spinach is not wet otherwise the mixture will become runny.

Add onion and the handful of urad dal kept separately to the chopped spinach.

Add the above to the ground mixture.

Mix it all together. The mixture will start becoming water with the addition of onions. Make the vadais immediately.

Heat oil for deep frying. Wait till the oil reaches the right temperature. I check this by dropping a small piece of mixture in the oil. When it sizzles and comes up I know the oil is ready. Take a small ball of dough and flatten it using palms. Drop it carefully into the oil.

Flip it after a couple of minutes.

Flip again after few minutes. We want a nice brown color. Keep the heat at medium since we want the vadai to be cooked all the way through and not just on the outside.

Drain it and place on paper towels. Well that is it. The spinach added a nice flavor to the vadai and it almost tasted like banana flower vadai. We had it as an evening snack with coffee.


1. Cabbage or onion can also be chopped finely and added instead of spinach.
2. Vadai is best eaten when warm and crunchy. It softens on cooling.
3. Keep the mixture course to get a crisper vadai.

Check out what other BM Marathoners are cooking.

Sending this to My Legume Love Affair started by Susan and Let’s Cook by Radhika.

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