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Jul 14, 2017

494: Elai Vadam/ How to Make Elai Vadam

Most of the Indian housewife makes large quantities of vadam and dry it properly and store it and use it even for 1 year.  Such traditions are dying a slow death now in a fast-paced world. Now a days, Supermarkets are stocking vadam and Vathals.
Elai Vadam is a delicious papad/ rice cracker that is very traditional to the south Indian homes. A simple recipe using raw rice,jeera  and salt. “Elai” in Tamil means leaf and since the batter of these vadam gets cooked in a banana leaf it gets its name. But these days, Elai Vadam stand is readily available and the Vadam can be made using that.
Taking full advantage of the bright summer sunshine, getting ready for the preparation of vadam making in full swing the last couple of weeks.
Today I am going to share my favorite recipe from my Amma’s kitchen. I love them and prefer eating them when just steamed. Most of the times, my Mom make only the steamed vadam to eat them just like that. 
Have fun in making this vadam and you will also enjoy making as much as I did.

Recipe Cuisine:       South Indian
Recipe Category:     Snacks/ Vadams
Preparation time:    12 hours (including soaking and fermentation time)
Cooking time:         1 hour
Makes:                   30


Raw Rice                 2 cups
Javvarisi/ Sago        2 Tablespoons (Optional)
Cumin seeds           1 Tablespoons
Salt                        To Taste
Green chilies -         2-3 Nos.

Special equipment needed are:
Banana Leaves/ Elai vadam stand
Pressure cooker/idli cooker/any steamer
A plastic sheet/ Cotton cloth ( to dry the vadam )

  • Wash and soak the rice for 4 hours.
  • Wash and clean the rice and Grind to a fine paste along with salt and green chili. Add water gradually while grinding.

  • Allow  the batter to ferment for overnight.  In the morning, you will get a nice fermented aroma from it. After fermentation, you will notice that there is a small layer of water on top of the batter. Remove this water and set aside.
  • Soak the Javvarisi for 2 hours.   Cook the Javvarisi in the hot water. Keep aside.

  • Now add the cooked Javvarisi and cumin seeds into the batter. if needed you can add more water to adjust consistency.

  • Cut the banana leaves and keep ready.
  • Grease the banana leaves with a drop of oil and add a ladle of batter on this. Spread it in a circular motion like a dosa.

  • Add water in a idli pan and keep a small cup filled with water inside. Keep a banana leaf on a plate, which should fit into the pan.

  • Steam this for a minute. The color will change as shown in the picture.

  • Take out the stand and remove the plates. When it is warm slowly peel it off, it will come out easily. Repeat the process until you finish all the batter.

  • You can eat them fresh as a evening tiffin. I love it.
  • To Store:
  • Peel the vadam slowly. you can arrange in a clean white cloth/ Plastic sheet for drying. Let it air dry/ sun dry  for a day or two.

  • After drying it, you can store it in an airtight box for up to a year. Whenever needed, fry it like the normal papad.

  • Heat oil in a deep-frying pan; fry a vadam at a time, they will fluff up and become bigger than they are.
  • Fry in enough oil and drain in paper towel. Serve the Elai Vadam as it is or along with your meal.

  • You can also roast it in open flame or microwave it.

  • You can use Idli rice also.
  • Consistency of the batter should not be too thin. If it is too thin, it will run out from the leaf.
  • Now a days, Elai vadam stands are available. If you are using the stands, slightly grease the plate with little oil spread the batter and steam it.
  • The vadam will stick to the plate if they have not steamed enough or if the plates have not been greased well.
  • If you are too tired to make all the vadam in one day, you can store the batter in the fridge and use it the next day.
  • Thank you Amma for the tips.

Have a look at the other South Indian recipes here

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