Sunday, April 4, 2021

Masoor Dhal Kothambir Wadi and a Taco

Kothambir wadi is a delicious traditional snack. This protein rich snack is flavored with cilantro aka kothambir and hence the name kothambir wadi. 

Traditionally, it is made with besan flour. I have made these with masoor dhal and they are exactly as delicious as the traditional ones. I usually try to make different versions without using chana besan so that every one in our family can enjoy the snack. This version is excellent in flavor.

The dal is soaked in this recipe. It is perfectly fine to grind the dry dal and then make too. Flavor-wise it would be great. When making these, it is important to note that the steaming time depends on the container used for steaming. If a deep dish is used and steamed in one entire batch, adjust the time by a couple more minutes. Or steam till an inserted knife comes out clean. I have divided into three containers and it requires 12 minutes of steaming time.

Dals are just not for soups. They are great as snacks and sides too. This wadi is great to be served as an appetizer, or as a side to rice and curries. Alternatively, they can be converted to a taco very easily and I have added the steps. Just a few steps and you can enjoy a taco - desi style! I am linking this to Srivalli's blogging marathon 121- Dazzling Dals. Check the Handvo Waffles that I have posted for the Dazzling Dals event. 


Orange masoor dhal / lentils - 1 cup
Kashmiri/Byedige chili - 2
Red chilies - 2
Salt - 3/4 tsp
Turmeric - 1/3 tsp
Cilantro - 1cup, chopped, firmly packed
Thai green chili - 1, minced
Water - 1/4 cup
Baking soda - 1/3 tsp
Ginger - 1/4 tsp, grated
Oil - 4 to 5 tbsp

For the taco

Salad mix
Green chutney mayo
Corn or whole wheat tortillas
Masoor dhal kothambir wadi


Soak the dal in enough water with both the red chilies for an hour. Drain the water. Grind to a smooth batter with 1-2 tbsp water. Transfer to a bowl. Add 1/4 cup water, salt, turmeric, cilantro, Thai chili, and ginger. Combine to form a smooth but thick batter.

Smear a little oil in a pan that can be kept in a steamer or pressure cooker. Add baking soda to the batter and mix. If using multiple pans, divide the dough equally between the pans. Also, add baking soda just before adding to the pan. Steam for 12 minutes or till a inserted knife comes out clean. The steaming time depends on the pan used.

Cool. Cut into squares. Take it out of the pan. 

Heat oil in a cast-iron pan. Add the cut kothambir cakes and shallow fry them 2 minutes on each side or till golden brown.

They can be served as such with a chutney or dip, ketchup, or as a side to rice.

To make a taco, spread a little green chutney mayo. Add some salad mix. Add the kothambir wadi. drizzle with more green chutney mayo and serve as a delicious taco.


  1. It's interesting to see the way you have converted a traditional dish into a scrumptious meal. Love the idea of using masoor dal instead of besan.

  2. This is a great idea to use the kothambir vada stuffed inside as a wrap. My boys would be so delighted to eat this. And we love anything with masoor.

  3. Wow, a traditional snack turned into a fusion meal that sounds both filling, and delicious.