Sri Lankan Prawn Vada/Isso Wade
Deep fried lentil fitters are addictive snacks.It has a taste all to its own- crunchy, delicious and mildly spicy. It is a perfect accompaniment with piping hot tea. Adding shrimp takes this snack to a new level.The Sri Lankan Prawn Vada/Isso Wade is very similar to the parippu vada served in tea stalls in South India. Sri Lanka has an extensive collection of Short Eats or snacks that can be eaten anytime at bakeries, restaurants and tea stalls.
The book Sri Lankan Cooking: 64 Recipes from the Chefs and Kitchens of Sri Lanka by Douglas Bullis, Wendy Hutton was my first introduction to Sri Lankan cooking. It has several unique recipes and this vada was one among them. There are some similarities with South Indian food.The close physical proximity between Sri Lanka and Southern India explains similarities and common culinary practices, but yet the island has its unique touch.
Isso Wade is a distant cousin of parippu vada with shrimp sticking out.Sea food lovers will love this vada. Here the shrimp is stuffed inside the lentil paste and deep fried. You can also make patties and stick shrimp on top and fry till crispy and golden. Serve these mouth watering vada with sliced onion and lemon juice.Try this home made version of the popular street food,you will surely love it.
Thuvar dal or Channa Dal- 1 1/2 cup
Prawns- 12 large size
Red dry chilly-3
Shallot- 2 chopped
Ginger- 1inch thick
Cumin seeds- a pinch
Fennel seeds -a pinch
Coriander leaves- 1 tbs chopped
salt to taste
Oil for deep frying
Thinly sliced onion- 1/2
Lemon juice-1/2 lemon
Soak channa dal for 4 hours and drain into a colander and set aside.
Grind the dal along with dry red chilly and 2-3 shrimp into a course mixture. Grind it without adding water. Adding shrimp to make the paste at this stage is optional,but it enhances the flavor of the vada.
Add green chilly , shallots, ginger, curry leaves, cumin seeds and fennel and pulse a few times to make a course mixture. Mix salt and chopped coriander leaves.
Heat oil in a fry pan or a heavy bottom pan. Take lemon sizes balls of the mixture and flatten it in between your palm to form small thin patties. Place the shrimp in the center and roll or just press one on top of the patties.Carefully slide into hot oil and fry till both sides become evenly browned up. Remove from oil to a paper napkin. Serve with ketchup, sliced onion an lemon wedges.
Hope you will all enjoy!