My friend Shalini shared her recipe for Vazhaipoo vadai. Separating the stamen out of each floret is a time consuming process. But, the taste of the crunchy vazhaipoo vadai is worth the time. Click here to learn more about Plantain flower. Here is the recipe.
Plantain flower - 1 medium
Channa dal - 1 cup ( soak in water for 2 hrs)
Turmeric powder - half cup
Water - 2 cups
Onion - 1 medium - chopped finely
Coriander leaves - half bunch - chopped finely
Salt as required
Oil for deep frying
Grind the following coarsely for the masala:
Cinnamon - half inch stick
Cloves - 5
Fennel seeds - 1 teaspoon
Peeled garlic - 2 to 3 pods
Green chillis - 3 to 4
Getting the plantain flower ready:
Take a bowl full of water mixed with turmeric powder.
Take out the outer purple layer of the plantain. You will see a bunch of white flowers.
Take one bunch out.
Take each floret and remove the stamen, which has a black tip and also peel off the small skin that is attached to the floret. Please refer the picture below.
Chop the florets and mix it in the turmeric water so that it does not change color.
Repeat this procedure until you have atleast three fourth cup of chopped plantain florets.
Drain the water from the channa dal and grind it without adding water.
Mix in the ground masala, chopped onion, salt and chopped coriander leaves.
Drain the water from the chopped plantain florets and mix it with the batter.
Since no water is used while grinding the consistency will be thick.
Take a tablespoon of the batter and shape it into a ball. Flatten it by pressing a little.
Deep fry both sides until golden brown.
Vazhaipoo vadai is ready and can be served with any kind of chutney.
Serve the crisp vadais immediately. It's a great starter and an authentic delicacy from Tamil Nadu. There are many versions of preparing the vadais. Few people mix asafoetida powder, cumin seeds or even substitute red chillis for green. When the masala is ground using the old fashioned mortar and pestle, vadai's taste is enhanced.