Keerai Masala Vadai / Spinach Channa Dal Vada

Have you ever crossed the local tea shops without ever noticing the masala vadai? Such street food delicacies are sinfully tasty, crispy and always I do wonder how do they maintain the crispness for a longer time. Don't miss to get one or two if the shop looks clean & decent.

While the medhu vadai / urad dal vada is the most popular vada variant, only occasionally we use to prepare masala vada my home. My personal favorite is the masala vadai.

I love the masala vadai that is available in the tea shop next to the temple at my native place. I get atleast one at my every visit to temple. Before I started the blog, I asked the tea master the recipe for vadai and he generously shared it with me. Since then I have been making his recipe and also here you are tasting it virtually.

I have added spinach to his original recipe and made "keerai vadai". We enjoyed every bite of it with hot tea. A wonderful combo that one should never miss during your evenings.


Basic information: 
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Soaking time: 2-3 hours
Cooking Time: 20 minutes


Channa  dal / Kadalai Paruppu - 3/ 4 cup
Toor dal - 1/4 cup
Spinach - 1 and 1/2 cup, optimum packing, finely chopped
Onion - 1 no., medium size, finely chopped
Green chilli - 4 nos., finely chopped
Fennel seeds - 1 teaspoon
Grated ginger - 1 teaspoon
Salt - to taste
Asafoetida - a generous pinch
Oil - as required for deep frying


1) Wash both Channa Dal and Toor Dal together and soak it for 2-3 hours.
2) Wash the spinach well and chop it finely.
3) After 3 hours, drain the excess water and grind the dal coarsely without adding water. Make a coarse dal mixture out of it. One or few whole channa dal in the mixture is fine.


4) Transfer it to a bowl and add finely chopped spinach leaves.
5) Add onion, green chilli, fennel seeds, grated ginger, salt and asafoetida. Mix well. Taste and adjust the salt if required.


6) Heat oil in a pan. When it is not smoking hot, pinch a lemon sized dough out of the batter and pat it to round shape and gently immerse it in the oil. Keep a bowl of water nearby to wet your palms after you made each vada. It helps to pinch and pat the vada easily.
7) Deep fry the vadai in medium flame till it becomes nice golden brown. Flip it in between for even frying.


8) Once done, transfer to a plate covered with paper towel to drain the excess oil if any.
9) Serve it hot with hot tea.


1) Instead of toor dal you can also use a tablespoon of rice grains. Soak it along with channa dal.
2) Any kind of greens can be used for making this keerai vadai.
3) Make sure the flame is in medium flame to get crispy vadai.

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Yum yum vadai, love the platter

sooper tea kadai style vadai

wow !! Super keerai vadai....tempting....

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