Saturday, 12 September 2015

Kothambir / Kothimbir Vadi (Indian Snack)

Kothambir Vadi
Kothambir / Kothimbir is the Maharashtrian name for fresh green leafs of Coriander. These leafs are my favorite due to the fragrance and subtle tangy taste. These leafs are rich in Iron and impart very good color and texture to the food, whether it by virtue of garnishing or using it as a base in curries and snacks. I do not like to waste the soft stalks of the fresh coriander leafs, thus whenever I separate leafs from stalk, the stalks are used to make Green chutney or added to vegetables while making clear vegetable soup. Yummy chutney and soups are made and except the roots nothing goes waste. In Maharashtra coriander leafs are used along with Besan (Black gram flour) to make delicious snack. Traditionally these Vadis are made by steaming the batter, but I make them by baing the batter and pan frying in least amount of oil to get low fat tasty yet very healthy and nutritious snack. It can be made both ways traditional steaming or Baking the batter. I prefer baking to steaming.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Baking Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 40-50 small pieces
Pre-heat the oven to 180 degree centigrade for 15-20 minutes

Nutritional Value (Approximate) of the Vadis made From the said amount:
Calories: 980
Fats: 16.27 gm
Cholesterol: 0gm
Sodium: 160mg
Potassium: 2115mg
Carbs: 114.55gm
Fibers: 30gm
Protein: 60 gm
Sugars: 27.12gm
Vitamin A, Iron, Calcium

Ingredients Required For Making Kothambir Vadi:
  • 1 Big Bunch of Fresh Green Coriander Leafs / Two tea cups cleaned and chopped leafs
  • 250 gm. Besan (Gram flour) / two tea cups
  • 4-5 Green Chilies / to taste
  • 8-10 Cloves of Garlic (Optional)
  • 2-3 cm. Ginger piece
  • 4 Teaspoon sesame seeds (2+2)
  • 1 teaspoon Mustard seeds
  • 1 Teaspoon Turmeric Powder
  • 1 Teaspoon Baking powder
  • 1/2Teaspoon Cooking Soda
  • 2 Teaspoon Any Cooking oil (I used Olive oil)
  • Salt to taste

Directions For making Kothambir Vadi:
  • Prepare a baking pan of 12”x12” by brushing it with oil nicely and ten dusting with besan like we do for cakes, difference is that maida/atta is replaced with besan.
  • Remove the roots of coriander sprigs and wash them thoroughly with flowing water to remove traces of soil.
  • Separate leafs from stalk. Keep the stalk to make chutney and drain water from leafs.
  • Cut the drained leafs finely and place them in a big bowl.
  • Make fine paste of green chilies, peeled garlic and ginger. If you are not using garlic then make paste of green chilies and ginger.
  • Mix
    • Oil
    • Salt
    • Baking powder
    • Cooking Soda
  • Mix with a dry spoon and keep aside.
  • To chopped coriander leafs add
    • Besan
    • Paste of garlic + ginger + green chilies
    • Salt + baking powder + eating soda + oil mixture
    • 2 Teaspoon Sesame seeds

All Ingredients to be Converted to Batter
  • Mix thoroughly with spoon.
  • The mixture will not be too wet but like dough.
  • Add 50 ml. water and mix to make a uniform mixture.
  • Add another 20-30 ml water and mix. By this time the batter should become of pourable consistency but not thin and flowing.
  • If you find the batter very thick, then add little water and mix to make batter of proper consistency as shown in the picture below. The amount of water may vary depending upon the water retained by leafs after draining as well as the quality of besan used.

Correct Consistency of Batter
  • Immediately pour al the batter in the baking pan and tap once or twice to remove any trapped air bubbles.
  • Bake in a preheated oven at 180 o C for 30 minutes or till baked.

Batter Ready For Baking
  • To checked the doneness of Vadi poke a dry skewer diagonally through the center. If it comes out clean then the Vadi is baked, else bake for the time till the skewer comes out clean. The time differs due to slight change in consistency of batter and make of oven.
  • Take out the baking pan form the oven. You will see that the top has some little cracks. That also is absolutely ok.
  • Cover the baking pan with a moist cloth and allow the baked batter to cool.
  • Remove the baked batter on the cutting board and cut it to the pieces of the size and shape you choose to.
Baked Batter of Vadi
  • I prefer 1-2 cm pieces.
Baked Batter of Vadi Cut to Pieces
  • Take a shallow pan and put 1/2 teaspoon oil in it. Heat till the oil is hot but not smoking.
  • Place 10-15 pieces of Vadis and let them become golden brown from one side. Flip and sprinkle 1/2teasoop oil on the pan and cook till the other side is also become golden brown.
    Kothambir vadi getting crisp and golden brown in pan
  • Repeat with all the Vadisd in the same manner to make them crisp and golden brown from top and soft from center using very little oil
  • Heat 
    • 1/2teaspoon oil in a ladle and to the hot oil add
    • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
    • 1 teaspoon Sesame seeds, Let them splutter.
  • Spread this seasoning on the Vadis
  • Remove from pan in a plate and serve with Tangy-hot Green chutney made by using the stalks instead of leafs / tomato sauce/green chili sauce / red chili sauce.

Kothambir Vadi

  • Always pre-heat the oven.
  • It is best that besan and chopped coriander leafs be taken in 1:1 ratio. If you choose you can reduce the coriander leafs amount. But I like when the Kothambir Vadis live up to their name and have great green color, yummy coriander flavor and slight bitter + hot + garlicy, gingery flavor. After all it is all about Kothambir (Coriander leafs).
  • Add water in little amounts to get correct consistency of batter. Adjust the amount of water for it may differ than what I have mentioned in recipe. I do not use packaged besan, they are too refined for my taste. I get chana dal ground to a bit coarse flour in flour mill.
  • Bake the batter immediately after mixing water else the baking powder and eating soda will start losing its effectiveness.
  • Do not make the batter runny it should be thick like cake batter. Not like pakodas (Fritters) batter.

Suggested Variations:
  • I prefer not to experiment with much spices here because the original flavor of coriander leafs has to be maintained to the highest level.
  • Traditionally these Vadis are made by steaming the batter and the pieces are fried. I prefer low oil so pan frying and baking is easier and hassle free. If you wish you can steam the batter and fry the pieces.
  • Instead of sesame seeds poppy seeds can also be taken for garnishing. These seeds not only enhance the taste but add much nutritional value also.
  • Kadi patta (Curry leafs), some pieces of red chili can be added to oil of seasoning along with the seeds.


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