Medu vadas are deep fried doughnuts made from Urad dal the creamy beige colored glutinous cousin of the mung bean. as delicious as they are, the 'deep fried' part sometimes can be a bit worrisome, especially since its not unheard of to scarf these down soaked in lentil gravy (Sambhar), Rasam, or green chutney.
Urad Dal is the closest to meat that ancient texts prescribed for the priestly class who were not allowed to touch meat or fish. Urad has a meaty aroma, (somewhat similar to grilled fish) when fried up or toasted. The texture of a batter made exclusively from soaked urad dal is akin to whipped egg whites and since it has a high level of proteins tends to behave like eggs when incorporated in batter. —Panfusine
What You'll Need
cup dehusked whole urad beans
Salt to taste. (~ 1 teaspoon)
teaspoon Choice of either finely minced green chiles OR teaspoon finely crushed black pepper
Canola Oil for brushing
finely grated ginger
Rinse the Urad dal thoroughly and soak in plenty of water for 3 hours or preferably overnight. Grind to a smooth batter using water judiciously in a blender with the required amount of salt . Add the black pepper / minced green chiles and the minced ginger to the batter (which should be somewhat similar to whipped egg whites that are not stiff like that for meringue, no 'peaks' required!)
Heat the waffle iron till its ready. Brush liberally with oil ( go ahead, slather it on, you're getting a deep fried crunchiness with much less). and pour about 2 oz (a coffee scoop amount) of batter on the plates. Close and allow to cook until the steam ceases to escape. Gently open the waffle iron & lift the waffles onto a serving plate.
Serve Warm with chutneys, aioli, or other relishes of your choice..
Suggested pairings: http://www.food52.com/recipes/10460_sweet_sour_tamarind_sauce