25 September, 2013

Chattambade Recipe | Spicy Chana Dal Vada Recipe

Learn how to make Chattambade or Masala Dal Vada ~ Spicy split chickpeas/Bengal gram or chana dal fritters

When you do something for a very long time, it becomes part of your life. It no longer remains a separate entity, but it becomes a way of life. It integrates into your life, your thoughts and the very core of your being! It becomes a habit, a routine and ultimately, part of you! Well, it’s no wonder that something that I have been doing for the last seven years has becomes inseparable part of my very soul! And today Monsoon Spice is not just a food blog, but my little place that treasures little snippets of my life, my memories, my dreams, aspirations and above all a place where I have freedom to express myself!
Chattambade or Masala Dal Vada ~ Perfect snack with evening cuppa

Yes, last week Monsoon Spice completed seven years of food blogging! It is a major milestone which surprisingly I almost missed to remember. If it was not for few faithful readers who reminded me about the day, I would have happily gone on ranting and rambling about the weather which once again has taken precedence in my ‘whine and grumble and complaint’ list! There is no fanfare to celebrate the major milestone. Instead, there is quiet contentment of having stuck to something for this long and still find immense joy in doing it.

Chana Dal/Split Bengal Gram/Split Chickpeas

Monsoon Spice is my first baby that I nurtured all these years and today, after seven years I feel very proud of the way it has evolved! I will not talk about numbers, traffic, hits, and stats today. Instead, I just want to sit back and let the warm blanket of contentment envelope me. For me it is quite surprising that I stuck with food blogging for this long and I just hope that seven year itch will not come crashing between my blog and me! Fingers and toes crossed! ;)

Chattambade or Masala Chana Dal Vada

Today I just want to take a moment and thank each and every one you for being a part of this culinary adventure. Seriously speaking it wouldn’t have been half the fun without you, my co-passengers in this food journey! So thank you one and all for your support, positive feedbacks, criticism and being part of my virtual family!

Soaked Chana Dal for Chattambade

Instead of cooking some elaborate feast to celebrate the blog anniversary, I decided to invite you for a quiet evening hot cuppa. I hope you will join me for this evening for a cup of coffee and sit back and mull over all the fun we had all these years. We sure had fun... Well, lot of fun! Didn’t we?! I hope Monsoon Spice and I continue to entertain you with rants and rambles, touch your heart with the stories, make you smile with few antics, satisfies your senses with the food photographs, make you come over the fear of cooking with some simple recipes, add some spice to your life and most importantly bring your friends and family closer with the food we share!

Chattambade or Masala Dal Vada ~ Deep fried delicacy from south India

Today I am sharing you one of our favourite family recipe from my native, Udupi-Mangalore. It is called Chattambade or simply Spicy Chana Dal Vada. Soaked split chickpeas or Bengal gram is ground to rough paste with few spices and deep fried to get golden brown fritters. Recipe for making Chattambade or Spicy Chana Dal Vada is quite simple and straightforward. The ingredients used are very few, easily available one and cooking technique is as simple as it can get. The crispy vada with crunch from few whole lentils and the aroma of fresh herbs and spices used make this Chattambade a rather special treat with hot cup of coffee or tea. Without further delay shall we make some hot and delicious Chattambade or Masala Dal Vada?!

Ingredients for Chattambade/Masala Dal Vada

Ground chana dal mixture for vada

Chattambade or Masala Dal Vada before deep frying

Chattambade or Masala Dal Vada (Spicy split chickpeas/Bengal gram or chana dal fritters)
Prep Time: 5 mins
Soaking Time: 2-4 hours
Cooking Time: 15-20 mins
Recipe Level: Easy/Beginner
Spice Level: Low to Medium
Makes: Around 15-18
Recipe Source: My Amma
Shelf Life: 3-5 days in room temperature and upto 10 days in fridge
Serving Suggestion: As an evening snack with tea or coffee

1 cup Bengal Gram/Split Chickpeas/Chana Dal
2-4 Dry Red Chillies (Adjust as per taste)
1 tsp Jeera/Cumin Seeds
2-3 springs Curry Leaves
¼ tsp Hing/Asafoetida
Salt to taste
Oil for Deep Frying
Chattambade or Masala Dal Vada

  1. Wash chana dal or split Bengal grams 2-3 times to remove impurities and soak it in 3 cups of water for 2-4 hours.
  2. Drain all the water from soaked lentil and keep it aside until needed.
  3. Break the dried red chillies into 2-3 pieces and place them in the bottom of a mixer grinder jar or food processor along with curry leaves. Next add the chana dal, cumin seeds, hing and salt to taste and press the pulse button few ties to get a rough paste without adding any water. Don’t worry if there are few whole lentils left as they will add crunch to the vadas.
  4. Remove from the mixer grinder into a mixing bowl and mix them well. You should easily be able to shape them into small balls without crumbling.
  5. Heat oil for deep frying in a pan or kadai on medium flame. While the oil is getting heated, shape the vadas for deep frying.
  6. Pinch small lime sized balls and roll them into round balls. Flatten it gently by pressing them in between palms or fingers to make about 2-2½ inch round discs.
  7. Drop these discs into hot oil and fry them in batches of 4-6 on medium flame until they turn golden brown in colour, about 2-3 mins.
  8. Remove from the oil with slotted spoon and place them in a plate lined with kitchen towel to remove excess oil.
  9. Serve these delicious Chattambade or Masala Dal Vada hot or at room temperature on their own with hot cup of coffee or tea. You can also serve them with any chutney, tomato ketchup or sauce of your choice and enjoy!

Chattambade or Masala Dal Vada ~ Spicy split chickpeas/Bengal gram or chana dal fritters

Sia’s Notes:
  • You can substitute dried red chillies to finely chopped green chillies in the recipe.
  • You can also add finely chopped one medium sized onion to the ground dal mixture.
  • You can also add 2-3 tbsp of grated coconut to the ground dal mixture.
  • If you like the spicy vadas, you can add ½ -1 tsp of black pepper corns to the ground dal mixture. Lightly crush the peppercorns with a help of a pestle and mortar before adding them.
  • You can serve the Chattambade or Masala Dal Vada on their own or with any chutney, tomato ketchup or sauce of your choice.
  • You can store them in an air tight container for 3-5 days in room temperature and up to 10 days in refrigerator.


  1. omg vada looks super delicious and crispy dear :) They are making me drool here !! very very well written post and amazing clicks :)

  2. Happy 7th Bloganniversary and to many more! Congrats, that is a milestone.

    This recipe is fabulous and your patties look mighty scrumptious.



  3. Sia...Congrats on yet another milestone and wish you many more like this :) My all time favorite :) Lovely write up and pics.

  4. congrats sia. wish you many more.

  5. beautiful blog... and a yummy recipe.. thnaks for sharing...

  6. Dear Sia,

    Happy seventh blog birthday to you! As I did for sra, in honor of *your* blog birthday I peeked into my archives to find the first comment you made on my blog -- it was in October of 2007! That means I've been drooling over OOPS I mean visiting your blog for a very long time :)

    I think your photos in this post may be my favs of all -- especially love the golden chana dal raw and soaked... as for the recipe -- it's a must try. I have a feeling that in the north woods, I will be doing more deep fried snacks come winter ;)

    Thanks for all the lovely posts till now, and wishing you all the best for another seven years and more!

  7. @Rosa's Yummy Yums, thank you Rosa for all your support and feedbacks all these years :)

  8. @Sushma, thank you. It was such a long time I had these and hence decided to make some and enjoy :)

  9. @krishna, thank you and welcome to Monsoon Spice :)

  10. @Linda, that is such a sweet gesture! That means we 'virtually' know each other for the last 6 years! I feel so blessed to have found some good friends who share my passion for food through blogging. thank you for being part of this culinary journey :)
    And please do try this recipe this winter. Knowing your love for Indian food, I am sure you will enjoy this vada a lot :)

  11. 7 yrs, now that deserves a celebration, Happy Bloggiversary!!
    The vada looks crispy and great, the pictures are equally lovely.

  12. Oh no Sia, my earlier comment didn't register! Huge congratulations on your 7 year milestone (not itch!). I've been thinking about a good recipe for the grown ups at my lil dumplings 3rd birthday and think this might just be it. I will report back. xx

  13. @Asha Shivakumar, thank you :) This food blogging is the only thing I have stuck this long next after marriage :) So I guess it is a huge milestone :)

  14. @Mallika, thank you. One of my friends served this with rasam as Rasa Vada and it was a huge hit with kids and adults alike. and oh, advance b'day wishes to your little one :)


Namaste! I am Sia and welcome to Monsoon Spice, my virtual home. Thank you for all your comments, inputs and feedback. I really appreciate the valuable time you spent browsing through my recipe repertoire.

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