Maddur Vada Recipe

Maddur Vada Recipe

Maddur Vada or Maddur Vade is a savory fried Indian snack that is served as a snack.

This south Indian vada is made with a combination of all-purpose flour (maida), semolina (rava), rice flour, onions, and a few spices.

Image of Maddur Vada, a tea time Indian snack made of maida, rice flour, rava, onions and spices that is deep-fried and served on a piece of paper with Indian tea in a brown teacup against a brown background.

Traveling in trains between Mysore and Bangalore was (is) never complete without buying Maddur Vada and coffee or tea from the vendors.

The vendors walk through the train coaches with a basket full of vadas that smell great and make you eagerly wait for them to come to you.

While we were happy to go visit our relatives in Bangalore, the train journey would be all the more exciting because we would get to snack on Maddur vada.

We always bought them in Maddur (a town between Mysore and Bangalore), as the vada would be fresher and tastier there.

The vada is usually handed over with a piece of a newspaper by the vendors. That is the reason I used them here as well in the pictures.

I know it is not good to serve food in a newspaper but could not resist myself from using them here to bring in the nostalgia (I never use them otherwise!).

If you have ever tasted the special Maddur vada from Maddur Tiffany’s (a small restaurant in Maddur), you will know how absolutely heavenly and delicious it tastes.

My dad used to get them for us from this restaurant whenever he went to Maddur on work. My happiness simply knew no bounds then!

Coming back to this recipe, my mom shared it sometime back and I could not resist trying it immediately.

Believe me, I was just so delighted as it turned out amazing and nothing less than the authentic version we get in Maddur.

Immediately took me back to those times and the memories around it just rushed back. :’)

What is Maddur Vada

Maddur Vada is one of the popular Karnataka recipes that originated in Maddur, a town in the Mandya district.

It is said that it was invented in 1917 by a chef who owned a small eatery in Maddur railway station when he accidentally threw in some ingredients and came up with this delicious snack.

This vada is made mainly from all-purpose flour (maida), semolina (Rava) and rice flour along with onions, green chilies, curry leaves, and cashews, poppy seeds, sesame seeds as special add-ons.

A perfect Maddur vada is neither too thick nor too thin, crispy on the outside and soft on the inside.

It is not much spicy either, and can surely be enjoyed by those who cannot handle hot food.

Ingredients Required

To make this, you will need a few mandatory ingredients and a few optional ingredients which would make the vada special and more delicious.

All-Purpose Flour (Maida)

I know maida is not really healthy but, it is what gives this Maddur vada the right texture as per my experience.

Maida helps hold the shape of the vada and also makes it soft on the inside.

Therefore, unfortunately, I do not have a solution yet for those with gluten allergies or those who want to avoid maida.

Semolina (Rava)

Rava is what gives that typical grainy appearance to Maddur vada. But, the type of rava we choose is extremely important here.

You have to use only Upma rava (also known as medium rava). This variety of rava is neither too coarse nor too fine.

Rava gives a nice stretchy consistency to the vada dough and also plays a role in making the vada soft.

Rice Flour-

Rice flour is used mainly for crispiness.

However, the quantity of rice flour you use makes a lot of difference. If you use more rice flour than maida and rava, you will end up getting super crispy rice crackers (Nippattu) kind of texture. 

This is definitely not what we are looking for. So please make sure you use the quantity just as mentioned in the recipe. 

Onions-

I would not be wrong if I say onions are a quintessential part of Maddur Vada.

Just make sure to use pink or red onions, and NOT white onions.

I will be explaining the right way to chop the onions under ‘Preparation to be Done’, as it makes a lot of difference.

Spices-

You will need basic everyday spices like green chilies, red chili powder, curry leaves, ginger.

It is completely optional to use red chili powder. The only difference it makes is by giving a slight reddish-brown color especially if you’ve used Kashmiri or Byadagi red chili powder. 

You can use fresh or dry curry leaves. They give a wonderful flavor, so I highly suggest you don’t skip it. 

Ginger is optional, but I like the flavor that it imparts. Also, it is good for digestion purposes.

Special Ingredients-

Cashews, Poppy Seeds, White Sesame Seeds make this vada more delicious. You can skip them, but I would highly suggest using them.

Trust me, it is a joy to get crunchy pieces of cashews in every bite, so I use them generously. You can of course reduce if you wish to.

My mom said she also added roasted and crushed peanuts along with cashews. I have not used it, but you can if you like.

Poppy seeds give a bit of nutty flavor. You can skip this if you do not find it in your place.

White sesame seeds also add a nutty, crunchy flavor along with imparting their unique taste.

Image of Maddur Vada, a tea time Indian snack made of maida, rice flour, rava, onions and spices that is deep-fried and served on a piece of paper with Indian tea in a brown teacup against a brown background.

Tips to Make the Best Maddur Vada

Chopping the onions right-

As trivial as it might sound, chopping the onions to the right size is extremely important here.

And I just cannot share the recipe without mentioning this explicitly, because I want it to turn out absolutely perfect for all of you.

The first time I made it, I chopped the onions into thin long slices, and it was really difficult to make balls with the dough.

The second time, I chopped them too fine and they got burned very quickly, the vadas turned bitter and also did not look the way they should.

So with my own mistakes, I figured out that they should neither be finely chopped nor should they be chopped into thin long slices.

Under the section ‘preparations to be done’ below, you will find pictures explaining this better.

Do not use water all at once-

After mixing all the ingredients (except water), divide this mixture into two bowls.

Mix only one bowl with water at once, knead to a dough and make vadas with this.

When you are almost done frying the vadas from this batch, mix the other half of the mixture with water and knead to a dough.

If you add water to the whole mixture at once, it will turn soggy as rava starts softening more with time.

It will then be difficult to pat or press the dough, plus it might soak up a lot of oil when you fry.

Pat/Press the dough to the right thickness-

It is important to pat or press the dough a little thick (about 3mm).

If it is too thin, it will get super crispy and hard and will not taste good.

If it is too thick, they will not get cooked well inside and might turn out to be too soft.

I personally like Maddur vada that is crispy on the outside and soft on the inside (the authentic way). Therefore, I roll it just a little thick (say about 3mm).

You can of course make it as per your liking, but remember the texture can vary.

Remember: While patting or pressing the dough, try to keep the thickness of the vada uniform so that it gets cooked evenly.

Fry on low-medium heat

If you fry the vadas on high heat, the onions will get burned quickly and the dough will not be cooked well on the inside.

If you fry on very low heat, the vada will soak a lot of oil.

Therefore, heat the oil well first and reduce the heat to low-medium before dropping in the vada. Fry on low-medium heat throughout.

These are some tips that I can give you guys and I hope you find them useful. I want the dish to turn out the best for you all and hence, I highly recommend you follow these. 🙂

To summarise, this Maddur Vada is 

  • Vegan 
  • A delicious tea time snack 
  • An easy and a quick snack option especially when you have guests
  • NOT Gluten-Free (sorry!)
  • As delicious as the ones you find in Maddur

More Snack Recipes

Masala Puri

Kodubale

Puff Pastry Chaat

Preparation to be done

1- Chop the onions

First, peel and slice them into thin slices and then cut the slices into 2 or 3 parts depending on the size of the onion. I used a medium-sized onion.

Refer to the third picture below- that’s approximately how big you want the onion pieces to be. 

2- Chop the cashews, green chilies and curry leaves

Do not chop the cashews too fine either, just chop them into smaller pieces.

Chop the green chilies finely.

If you are using fresh curry leaves, chop them too. I used dried curry leaves so I just crushed and added to the mixture later.

3- Grate the Ginger

Peel and grate the ginger using a grater. Grating helps in extracting a good amount of juice and flavor from ginger.

Now that you have everything ready, let us move on to the recipe, shall we?

Maddur Vada Recipe

Maddur Vada is a delicious tea-time snack that is vegan and can be made easily. This recipe includes step by step method to make the authentic Maddur vada.
Course Snack
Cuisine Indian
Keyword Maddur Vada
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 12 Numbers
Author Praneetha A Goutham

Ingredients

Measurement: 1 cup = 250 ml

  • 1 cup maida / all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup upma ravamedium rava
  • 1/4 cup rice flour
  • 4 medium sized onionschopped
  • 2 long green chiliesadjust as per taste
  • 1/2 inch fresh gingergrated
  • 2 sprigs fresh curry leavesor 4 teaspoons dried curry leaves
  • 25 numbers cashewsoptional
  • 1 teaspoon red chili powderoptional
  • 2 teaspoon white sesame seedsoptional
  • 3 teaspoon poppy seeds
  • 1.5 teaspoon saltor as per taste
  • oilas required to fry
  • 3+3 tablespoons wateror as required

Instructions

  • In case you missed reading the ‘preparation to be done‘ section above, please check it out before you proceed with the recipe.
  • Into a mixing bowl, add all the chopped ingredients- onions, cashews, green chilies, fresh curry leaves, and grated ginger, along with white sesame seeds, poppy seeds, red chili powder, salt. If you are using dried curry leaves, crush and add them along. Mix all the ingredients well using your hand.
  • To this, add maida, rice flour, and upma rava. Mix everything well by squeezing the onions nicely so that their juice is released. After mixing well, the mixture will hold shape when pressed in your hand. If it does not, squeeze and mix more. Let this rest for 10 minutes.
  • In the meantime heat cooking oil in a wide pan such that it gets well heated, but make sure it does not get smoky. It should be heated on medium heat.
  • Once the oil is heated well, add 2 tablespoons of it to the mixture and give a quick mix. Divide this mixture equally into two bowls before adding water. This will ensure that the complete mixture will not get soggy over time.
  • Into the first bowl, add in 3 tablespoons of water and mix well to form a smooth dough. You need not have to knead, just mix well. If required, you can add a little more water.
  • Divide the dough into lemon sized balls, by applying oil to your palm if the dough is sticky.
  • Now there are 3 ways to shape the dough into vadas- you can either pat the dough on a butter paper, or press it in between your palms, or use a tortilla press. Just make sure to keep it slightly thick, say about 3-4mm.
  • Pat on a butter paper- apply oil to the butter paper and press a dough ball such it spreads and becomes uniformly thick. If it sticks to your palm, apply oil and press.
  • Press in between your palms- apply oil to both the palms, place the dough ball on one palm, and gently press using the other palm. Since rava gets stretchy, it is easy to press and stretch. I prefer this method.
  • Tortilla press- oil a butter paper, place the dough ball, cover it with another oiled butter paper and press it using a tortilla press. Remember to not press too thin.
  • You can press/pat about 3 to 4 dough balls at once depending on the size of your frying pan. Keep them all aside on the same butter paper or on a plate.
  • By now oil would be heated well, make sure to reduce the heat to low-medium before frying the vadas.
  • Carefully slide the shaped vadas into the oil. After a few minutes, flip and fry the other side. Continue to flip and fry well on both sides until both sides turn golden brown.
  • Once you have fried all the vadas from the first batch, add 3 tablespoons water to the mixture in the second bowl and proceed to make the dough and fry the vadas in the same manner.
  • Lastly, you can fry some curry leaves in the oil and add them to the fried vadas for a lovely flavor.

Notes

  1. Adjust the number of green chilies, and quantity of salt as per taste.
  2. Remember to not add water to the complete mixture at once. Divide into more batches if you are making larger quantities than mentioned in the recipe. 
  3. You can add roasted, peeled and crushed peanuts as well. 
  4. Maddur Vada can be stored in an air-tight container up to 4 days (if only it stays for so long that is ;)). 
 
Please check out the step by step recipe instructions with pictures below this recipe card for a much better understanding of the recipe. 

How to make Maddur Vada- Step by Step Method

Note: 1 cup= 250ml

In case you missed reading the ‘preparation to be done‘ section above, please check it out to know how exactly to chop the onions for this recipe along with the other preparation required.

 Step 1:

Into a mixing bowl, add all the chopped ingredients- onions, cashews, green chilies, fresh curry leaves, and grated ginger.

Next, add the white sesame seeds, poppy seeds, red chili powder, salt. If you are using dried curry leaves, crush and add them along. Mix all the ingredients well using your hand.

Step 2:

To this, add maida, rice flour, and upma rava. Mix everything well by squeezing the onions so that their juice is released.

I first added all the flours to a bowl, mixed well, and then transferred it to the other bowl with onions, etc. But it makes no difference, so just add everything together.

After mixing well, the mixture will hold shape when pressed in your hand. If it does not, squeeze and mix more. Let this rest for 10 minutes.

Step 3:

In the meantime heat cooking oil in a wide pan such that it gets well heated, but make sure it does not get smoky. It should be heated on medium heat.

Once the oil is heated well, add 2 tablespoons of it to the mixture and give a quick mix.

Into the first bowl, add in 3 tablespoons of water and mix well to form a smooth dough. You need not have to knead, just mix well. If required, you can add a little more water.

Step 4:

Divide this mixture equally into two bowls before adding water. This will ensure that the complete mixture will not get soggy over time.

Into the first bowl, add in 3 to 4 tablespoons of water and mix well to form a smooth dough. You need not have to knead, just mix well. If required, you can add a little more water.

Step 5:

Divide the dough into lemon sized balls, by applying oil to your palm if the dough is sticky.

Now there are 3 ways to make the patty- I will explain all three methods.

Pat on a butter paper/parchment paper- apply oil to the butter paper and press a dough ball such it spreads and becomes uniformly thick. If it sticks to your palm, apply oil and press. Do NOT use water to press.

Press in between your palms- apply oil to both the palms, place the dough ball on one palm, and gently press using the other palm. Since rava gets stretchy, it is easy to press and stretch. I prefer this method.

Pat/Press on a butter paper

Directly press on your palm

Tortilla press- oil a butter paper, place the dough ball, cover it with another oiled butter paper and press it using a tortilla press. Remember to not press too thin.

I don’t have a tortilla press and therefore haven’t tried it personally, but I don’t see a reason why it should not work with this press.

Step 6:

You can press/pat about 3 to 4 dough balls at once depending on the size of your frying pan. Keep them all aside on the same butter paper or on a plate.

By now oil would be heated well, make sure to reduce the heat to low-medium before frying the vadas.

Carefully slide the vadas into the oil.

Step 7:

After a few minutes, flip and fry the other side.

Continue to flip and fry well on both sides until it turns golden brown on both the sides. It will turn darker in color once you take it off the oil.

Transfer them onto a paper towel to remove excess oil.

Step 8:

Once you have fried all the vadas from the first batch, add 3-4 tablespoons water to the mixture in the second bowl and proceed to make the dough and fry the vadas in the same manner.

Lastly, you can fry some curry leaves in the oil and add them to the fried vadas for a lovely flavor.

How to Serve Maddur Vada

You can serve it as is, or with thick coconut chutney.

Do not miss to enjoy them with a cup of hot coffee or tea. Definitely recommended especially on a rainy evening.

Please don’t blame me if the vadas get over in minutes though. 😉

I hope you give this recipe a try and enjoy it as much as I enjoyed preparing it and writing it down for you all. 🙂

If you have any questions about the recipe, kindly post them below under comments.

If you try this recipe, do share a picture and your feedback with me personally on Instagram Facebook.

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Image of Maddur Vada, a tea time Indian snack made of maida, rice flour, rava, onions and spices that is deep-fried and served on a piece of paper with Indian tea in a brown teacup against a brown background.



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