Ambode - Falafel's tastier cousin
- 2 Medium sized pots
- Wet Blender
- Chopping Board
- Medium sized Bowl
- A Big Bowl
- 300 grams Chana Dal Is a type of Indian Lentil. You can use dried yellow split peas instead.
- 1 inch Fresh Ginger
- 3 piece Green chillies
- 15 gram Fresh Coriander Leaves
- 2 piece Yellow Onions
- 4 gram Salt
- 300 ml Refined Oil Prefer peanut oil, if you can find it.
- 3 gram Asafoetida Hing in Kannada
- 3 piece Curry leaves Karibevu in Kannada or kadi Patta in Hindi.
- 3 gram Turmeric Powder Arishina Pudi in Kannada or Haldi in Hindi.
- 30 gram Gram flour Kadale Hittu in Kannada or Besan in Hindi
- Soak the yellow peas overnight in a medium sized pot. Take care that the peas fill the pot to half its height and no more with water till the top of the pot, as the peas swell after they absorb the water and re-hydrate.
- The soaking should be for a minimum of 8 hours, to make sure the peas are fully hydrated. You can test if they are ready by chewing on a pea and you should feel the freshness all the way through without any feel of dry center.
- Chop and finely dice the ginger, onion, curry leaves and coriander leaves and keep them in a bowl.
- Put the re-hydrated peas in a wet belnder without water and grind it coarse. This is a time consuming and can be frustrating, if the blender does not have blades that run almost to the edge of the jar, as you will have to keep scraping the blend, put it back into the center. Blend and repeat till the peas are coarse enough.
- For this you will need a powerful blender with a jar that has the blades flat and almost to the edge.
- Do not add a lot of peas, nor too little. Too many will take ages to make a coarse blend. Too little will not blend at all. With some practice you will get a hang of this, once you start.
- Once all the peas are coarsely blended. transfer them to a bowl. Add the dices, ginger, onions, chillies, Hing, Turmeric powder and Curry leaves. Salt to taste.
- Mix well.
- Test the mix to see if it holds well by taking a handful of the mix and squeeze it 3-5 time in your palm with your fingers and see if you can make a ball out of it? A well blended pea mix should naturally be able to form balls.
- But if the blender you have is not good enough to make it coarse enough, then sprinkle a bit of gram flour. Take a handful, squeeze and see if it forms a ball. If not, sprinkle some more gram flour, repeat. Repeat till you feel it is easy to make a ball.
- Keep a medium sized pot, pour the oil into it. Keep on a medium flame and heat the oil up.
- To the hot oil, start making the balls form the mix, flatten it a bit and put it into t he oil.
- Make 3-4 flattened balls of the Ambode at once. Fry each batch till the outside is golden brown. This should take around 3-5 minutes for each batch.
- Once fried, drain the oil well and transfer them to a bowl with some absorbing tissue at the bottom to absorb any remaining oil.
- Take an Ambode and taste it to see if it is cooked well through to the middle. If it is not, that means it has to be fried a bit more. Lower the heat a bit more if the outside is well fried and the middle still feels uncooked.
- Finish frying the whole batch of Ambodes from the mix. Enjoy with a Huli and rice or just by itself with some Chai. Enjoy!
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India is home to millions of people who have been vegetarians for more than 2000 years. We want to bring the richness of that to your kitchens and hope it makes you as happy as I am.
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