This recipe is from Neikarapatti Amma as we fondly call her. Amma’s real name is Vijayalakshmi Gurusamy. She is my aunt’s co-in-law. Neikarapatti is near Palani in Tamilnadu. The house where Neikarapatti Amma lived was huge. It was called as Jameen Bangala. We were always excited to go there as a kid. The house was really huge. Not to mention the 20×20 feet bathrooms. After sun sets and everyone’s back home, a good 15 people – all of them family, used to play cards in the lobby. I was a kid then and all cards played by kids were “oppuku chappa – not countable tickets. How I wish we knew this then.” This kola will come as a snack for everyone to enjoy. This is Neikarapatti Ammas family recipe and its out of this world. Neikarapatti Amma is the most sweetest person you will ever meet. She loves to chew on betel nut. Just next to the dining table will be a thaamboolam with betel leaf, nut, sunnam paste and roja paaku. After lunch, every one will just relax in the front yard chewing betel leaf. Some will just take a small nap in the wicker chairs lined up in the hallway. Good old days. People seemed to have a lot of time then. Only memories are left now. This Vazhakkai vadai / Kola is legendary. Here is the most amazing Vazhakkai Vadai you will ever eat.
Here is the video of how to make Neikarapatti Vazhakkai Vadai / Vazhakkai Kola / Plantain Vada Recipe
NOTE: This recipe is not a beginners recipe.
Take the fried gram dal / pottu kadalai and make it to a fine powder in a small mixie jar / spice grinder. Please do not substitute besan for this recipe. The vada will come out rock hard.
We need to cook the plantains now. You can either steam the plantain in an idli vessel for 10-12 minutes or cook in a pressure cooker for just 1 whistle. I cooked the plantains with little water in the pressure cooker today. Remove from heat and let it cool. Peel the skin and set aside.
Note: If its a big plantain, use just one. If they are small, use two.
Now, its Masala Grinding Time.
Add in all the ingredients listed under grinding into a mixie / blender and grind it to a smooth paste. Add very little water while grinding. Few tablespoon at a time. Take time to grind it as fine as possible. Trust me, that’s the key to this recipe. After the mixture is very finely ground, add in the peeled plantains and pulse it a few times. The plantains should get incorporated with the masala mixture. Make sure there are no lumps.
Remove the mixture from the mixie and add in the fried gram powder. Mix well to combine. Do not add lots of fried gram powder. It will make the vadas break while frying in hot oil. The dough will be downright tacky to handle. The dough will be very soft. Don’t panic. That’s how its supposed to be.
Apply little oil to your hands. Make small 1.5 inch balls with your hands. Make sure you do not make big balls as the inside might not cook when frying. So remember to make the balls small in size. Its a very soft messy dough. Handle the dough gently.
If the palms become messy and rolling the balls seem impossible, wash your hands and start again.
I like to refrigerate the balls for 30 minutes before frying. This kind of crusts the outer skin and it helps in keeping the vada from disintegrating in hot oil.
Heat oil in a pan in medium heat. Once the oil is hot, fry the balls in low medium flame until golden. Do not crowd the pan or disturb the balls for the first minute. Either of this will make the balls to break. Just leave the balls and do not touch them after it hits the oil for the first minute. When the vadas are golden, remove from oil and drain on paper towels. Do not fry in really hot oil. The vadas will get browned faster and the inside will not have time to cook. So keep the flame at medium at all times. Serve vazhakkai vadai hot.
One of the best vazhakkai vadai you will ever eat.Print
Vazhakkai Vadai / Vazhakkai Kola / Plantain Vada Recipe
Easy recipe for Vahakkai Vadai. Plantain Vadai. Authentic family recipe thats always a hit. With step by step pictures and video.
- Total Time: 40 mins
- Yield: 6 servings 1x
- Measurements Used – 1 Cup = 250 ml, 1 teaspoon = 5 ml, 1 tablespoon = 15 ml.
Ingredients for grinding
- 1/2 cup fresh shredded coconut
- 1 medium sized onion
- 5 cloves garlic
- 1 inch piece ginger
- 1 inch piece cinnamon
- 1 clove
- 1 cardamom
- 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1 tablespoon khuskhus – white poppy seeds (optional)
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- 1 teaspoon red chilli powder
- 3 green chilli
- 2 sprig curry leaves
- 5 stalks coriander leaves
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1–2 Vazhakkai / Raw Banana / Plantain
- 1/2 cup fried gram / pottu kadalai
- 500 ml Vegetable oil
- Take the fried gram dal / pottu kadalai and make it to a fine powder in a small mixie jar / spice grinder.
- Steam the plantain in an idli vessel for 10-12 minutes or cook in a pressure cooker for just 1 whistle. Peel the skin and set aside.
- Add in all the ingredients listed under grinding into a mixie / blender and grind it to a smooth paste. Add very little water while grinding.
- When the mixture is very finely ground, add in the peeled plantains and pulse it a few times. The plantains should get incorporated with the masala mixture.
- Remove the mixture from the mixie and add in the fried gram powder. Mix well to combine.
- Apply little oil to your hands. Make small 1.5 inch balls with your hands.
- Refrigerate the balls for 30 minutes before frying.
- Heat oil in a pan in medium heat. Once the oil is hot, fry the balls in low medium flame until golden. Remove from oil and drain on paper towels. Serve hot.
- Prep Time: 20 mins
- Cook Time: 20 mins
- Category: Appetizer
- Cuisine: Tamilnadu, South Indian
Keywords: vazhakkai kola
43 thoughts on “Neikarapatti Vazhakkai Vadai / Vazhakkai Kola / Plantain Vada Recipe”
It came out super delicious.. Thank u for the awesome recipe.. Sorry for not taking a photograph….
Tried this recipe , it turned out beautiful 🙂 All your recipes are so trustworthy. I have tried plenty of your recipes and have got great appreciation. All your recipes have their own uniqueness and I love your write up about the origin of the recipe very much 💕 your blog is full of heritage cooking.
More love to you. Thanks 🙂
Thank you so much!
Even though I am from Kovai, I live in California now and visit your page often for reference as the recipes and spices you use are very similar to what our family uses. I love cooking and I always wondered how your recipes are almost the same. Now I know! My paternal bethamma is from Neikarapatti and I am so familiar with this kola urundai. Treasurable recipes for generations to come! I don’t just mean this recipe – but your entire collection. Annapoorna sambhar that I make using your recipe as reference takes our family back to CBE. Please consider publishing a book. Would love to get in touch with you.
Thank you so much Anitha. love the Neikarapatti connection.
Tnks for documenting this delicious snack from vijayakka…Nothing can beat the kai pakkuvam of the neikkarapatti ladies.My moms sister, Baiamma , was married off to this small village with such wonderful culinary heritage.Pedanna was a hardcore foodie, nd he used to pamper us with such delicacies that I don’t think can ever be found anywhere else.Our endless summers spent at neikkarapatti bring such fond memories.
Please do document more recipes from vijayamma .looking forward to more nonveg recipies , neikkarapatti style.
Thanks so much! will definetely try and document recipes.
Tnks for documenting this simple yet delicious snack…Nothing can beat the kai pakkuvam of the neikkarapatti clan…my moms sister, Baiamma , as we fondly remember her, was married off to this small village nd pedanna used to pamper the whole clan to mouth watering delicacies.our numerous summers spent there were one of the best memories of my childhood….
Pls do record all their nonveg nd veg dishes .I am sure vijayamma will be glad to share them all.
Hi can I fry the balls without grinding it in the mixie so I get a meaty texture!!?
We don’t have to add an egg to bind?
No eggs in this recipe. You can mash the banana instead.
Hi, I don’t get poppy seeds where I live. Can I make it without that? Or any substitute?
You can skip if its not available.
Such an awesome explanation ! Step by step procedures with pictures great!
Thank you so much.
Can you freeze these and use them over two weeks? I will be substituting the plantains with mutton. Please let me know.
Yes. you can. Do not fry the balls. Just freeze the balls, thaw and fry when needed. so the balls stay crisp.
Hi! Just wanted to update, I kept the batter in fridge overnight. next day, I rolled the balls and fried it without further refrigeration. It worked and I got the exact brown colored balls as shown in the picture!! I was soooo happy! I used a variety called as ‘ruru bananas’ , and thankfully not plantain (because during the first try, i was actually wondering if I should have used plantains!)
Thanks for an amazing recipe!
Dear Kannamma, I’m making this- taste is absolutely divine. But, the vadai is disintegrating in the pan while frying. I added exactly 1/2 cup fried gram dal.i didn’t make the whole batch, I kept almost 1/2 batter in fridge and planning to try a round of frying tomorrow. Any tips how I may correct it at this stage please?thanks for a beautiful recipe – it’s super tasty &delicious.
Hope you used plantains and not bananas. The recipe is fool proof and has never disintegrated in oil. Try frying in hot oil.
We tried this recipe and the taste was so nice.
We all enjoyed having it. Perfect measures really helped beginners like us. We are going to make this again soon. Thanks for sharing this lovely recipe with all of us.
Thank you so much.
Thank u soooooo much for this wonderful recipe. I tried both Ur version of veg and non veg urundai akka as usual it was awesome. Let Ur hardwork rock.
Thanks so much Amala.
I am also living in neikkarapatti near that periya veedu(jamin bungalow). Thank you for this recipe.
That’s nice to know Priya. I love Neikarapatti!
Hi. I tried the recipe..flavor wise its surprisingly same as mutton kheema ..so good…but some how it turned lightly hard and chewy..to me the mistake I done is I kept in fridge for 1.5 hrs …is that so?? Even I got perfect rounds even aftr I fried
may be try reducing the dal next time.
thank u 🙂
Hi ,tried this recipe turned out yummy..kids loved it like anything..started buying raw bananas especially to make this ..thanks a ton..keep rocking..
Thank you so much!
Could these be made in air fryer? Thanks.
I have not tried in air fryer but think it will work. Just sprinkle some oil on the vadas and then place in the air fryer.
Ya I refridgerated…but frst I added nly very little pottukadalai powder…tat was the mistk…I cnt evn roll the balls evn aftr applyng oil…thn I added sufficient powder n I culd see the dffrnc…it was easy to roll n it did nt brk too…so tat was the mistk..
Is it. ok. But it worked out in the end:)
After a gap I have tried tis recipe of urs…the thng is u hv clearly mentnd tat its nt a beginnrs recipe…but with blind confidnc I attmptd tis…as u said dfntly its nt a bginnrs recipe…frst 10 balls was totlly a collapse…thnk god I tried nly 1 balls at a tym mkng chngs evrytym…atlst I got the crrct consistncy…frm 11th ball onwrds it was a succss both in taste n in shp…it wasssss realllyyyy mouth watering taste…defntly gonna try with mutton too…thnk u fr tis
Did you keep in the fridge for sometime?
I tried this recipe and it turned out very well. Your site has become a go to place for many authentic recipes of Kongu region. Also, love the story that comes with each recipe. So far all the recipes I have tried from here have brought huge compliments 🙂 A big thank you!
Thank you so much Madhumathi. Really nice of you to say that. Happy cooking!
Great to hear from you.my mother I law too is from neikarapatti really delicious dishes from there .my in law use to make plantain flower vada in the same way with slight variations. Hav u heard about pulli vada their favorite one.eager to see more of your recipes.
Yes Sudha. Puli vadai is my favorite. My other in laws recipe for puli vadai coming up soon. Nice to know that your mil is from Neikarapatti. I have a couple of more recipes from the region coming up.:) Keep watching the space and Thank you for writing in.
Hope you are doing good.
And, that’s a fantastic recipe. Actually i do the same way, just by replacing plantain with minced mutton, rest all is the same. We do the usual thallippu with mustard seeds and curry leaves in coconut oil and add water and salt and steam those balls, till its done…..then that’s kaima urundai!!!
Tried your Annapoorna sambar came out really well. Keep up your good work! Best wishes & happy 2016.
Take care, Deepa
Thats really nice to hear Deepa. You are right. Neikarapatti amma also does a mutton kaima urundai (but deep fried) in a similar way. Will share the recipe soon. Thank you for writing in. Wish you a great year ahead!