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Vadam recipes: How to make rice crispies at home

June 04, 2014 16:31 IST

Vadam recipes: How to make rice crispies at home

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S Saraswathi

These traditional delights are served with rice and also make for a yum evening snack!

Vadams or vatthals, are popular South Indian crispy fried treats that go perfectly with almost all varieties of rice; when served with vadams, even the humble curd rice becomes more tempting.

They are equally loved by both adults and children and also make a good evening snack. 

You can tempt even the most fussy eaters with a handful of these deep fried crispies.

While a variety of vadams -- in all shapes, colours and flavours -- are available in the market, the home-made ones still taste the best. 

Summer is here and the weather is just right to make vadams that have a longer shelf life. 

Koozh Vadam

Ingredients

  • 1 cup rice flour
  • 2-3 green chillies
  • 1 tsp jeera/black sesame seeds
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida
  • 5 cups water
  • Lemon juice (From half a lime)
  • Salt to taste
  • Food colours of your choice (Optional)

Method

  • Dissolve the rice flour in one cup of water, mix well so that no lumps are formed.
  • Boil the remaining water in a thick-bottomed vessel.
  • When the water starts to boil, reduce the flame and slowly pour in the rice mixture.
  • Stir continuously on low heat until mixture thickens, the colour will change slightly and the mixture will become semi-transparent. Do not make it too thick.
  • Grind the green chillies, asafetida and salt with a little water and add to the rice mixture.
  • Mix well and remove from flame.
  • Crush the jeera lightly and add to the mixture.
  • Squeeze the juice of half a lemon and mix well.
  • Allow the mixture to cool slightly.
  • Spread a clean cloth (usually dhotis are used) in the terrace where there is direct sunlight.
  • Thick plastic sheets can also be used, but cloth is preferred.
  • Drop small quantities of the mixture on the cloth with a small spoon onto the cloth, leaving about 1 inch space between them.
  • Allow it to dry for the entire day.
  • At night you can gently fold the cloth and keep in a dry place.  Spread it once again in the sun the next morning.
  • A minimum of 2-3 days of bright sunlight is required for the mixture to completely dry.
  • To peel the vadams, turn the cloth upside down and sprinkle a little water.  This will help peel them off more easily. 
  • Collect in a large plate and allow them to dry in the sun for a few more days.
  • Once completely dry, you can store them in airtight containers.
  • Whenever required, heat oil in a pan and fry the vadams for about a minute until they puff up.
  • Serve them with rice or like any other snack during tea time.

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Image: Fried vadams can even double up as an evening snack.
Photographs: S Saraswathi

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Ribbon Vadam

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Ribbon Vadam

Ingredients

  • 1 cup rice flour
  • 3 green chillies
  • 1 tsp jeera/black sesame seeds
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida
  • 3 cups water
  • Lemon juice (extracted from half a lime)
  • Salt to taste

Method

  • Dissolve the rice flour in one cup of water. Mix well so that no lumps are formed.
  • Boil the remaining water in a thick-bottomed vessel.
  • Grind green chillies, asafetida and salt in 1/4th cup of water.
  • Strain and use the infused water, this is done to avoid blocking the holes in the mould while pressing the dough.
  • When the water starts to boil, reduce the flame, add the chilli-infused water and slowly pour in the rice mixture.
  • Stir continuously on low heat until mixture thickens nicely and forms a slightly sticky dough.
  • Switch off the flame and allow the mixture to cool.
  • Now add the lemon juice, crushed jeera and gently knead to make a soft dough (sprinkle some water if necessary).
  • Spread a clean cloth in the terrace where there is maximum sun light
  • Wet your hands, take a handful of the dough and fill the Idiyappam mould.
  • Now slowly press onto the cloth, making small concentric circles, leaving about 1 inch space between them. (you can use the different plates available with the idiyappam press to make different shapes of vadams)
  • To dry the vadam, follow the steps as for the Koozh Vadam.

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Image: Ribbon Vadam
Photographs: S Saraswathi

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Sabudana Vadam

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Sabudana Vadam (Sago Fryums)

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup rice flour
  • 1/2 cup sabudana (sago)
  • 2-3 green chillies
  • 1 tsp jeera/ Black sesame seeds
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida
  • 5 cups water
  • Lemon juice (from half a lime)
  • Salt to taste
  • Food colours of your choice (optional)

Method

  • Soak sabudana for 4 to 5 hours or overnight in 2 cups of water.
  • Add 2 more cups of water to the soaked sabudana and heat on low flame until the mixture starts boiling by stirring continuously.
  • Dissolve the rice flour in one cup of water and mix well so that no lumps are formed.
  • When the sabudana is half cooked, slowly pour in the rice flour mixture.
  • Stir continuously on low heat until mixture thickens, the colour will change slightly and the mixture will become semi-transparent. Do not make it too thick.
  • Grind the green chillies, asafetida pd and salt with a little water and add to the rice mixture.
  • Mix well and remove from flame.
  • Crush the jeera/black sesame lightly and add to the mixture.
  • Squeeze the juice of half a lemon and mix well.
  • Allow the mixture to cool slightly.
  • To pour and dry the vadam, follow the steps from koozh vadam, shared at the start.

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Image: Sabudana Vadam
Photographs: S Saraswathi

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Killu Vadam

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Killu Vadam

For those who are too busy, here is a simple and easy vadam recipe that can be made in a jiffy, using leftover rice, and tastes just as good.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups leftover cooked rice
  • 1 tsp jeera
  • 3 green chillies
  • 1/4 tsp asafetida
  • 10-12 shallots
  • Lemon juice (from half a lime)
  • Salt to taste

Method

  • Coarsely grind the green chillies, asafetida, shallots and salt.
  • If the rice is soft and overcooked, you can mash it with your hand, otherwise you will need to grind it.
  • Alternately you can soak the leftover rice in two cups of water and leave it overnight. The next morning drain out the water completely and grind it coarsely.
  • Now add the chilli-onion paste along with the lemon juice and crushed jeera to the rice paste. Mix well.
  • Pinch small portions of the dough and place on a wide plate or clean cloth, and allow it to dry in the sun for a couple of days.
  • Store it in an airtight container.
  • When required, fry it in oil till it puffs up, drain the oil and serve with rice.

Image: Killu Vadam
Photographs: S Saraswathi

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