Vazhaipoo Vadai | Bananaflower Vadai

January 16, 2023

Make these delicious, crispy bananaflower vadais! Unlike a usual masala vadai with onions, this one is unique because of the mild bitterness and sharp flavours of the banana flower. The vadai has a mix of dals – toor, channa, moong and is flavoured with coriander, fennel and pepper and spiced with red chillies.

The most time-consuming part of this recipe is cleaning the banana flower. I’ll be honest – I’ve never done it and here is a link for you to learn how to clean it! Amma makes many dishes with banana flowers including using it in a parupusilli. But her speciality is this vadai. Unlike an usual masala vada which has mostly channa dal, this one has a mix of dals. Amma also flavours it beautifully resulting in a very unique tasting vadai.

The key to the success of these vadais is to make the batter perfectly. Here are Amma’s top tips to ensure your vadai is amazing!

  • Soak the dals in boiling hot water. It makes the soaking process quick and ensures the dals are hydrated enough to grind well.
  • Amma uses a mix of dals – one portion is channa dal and the other half is a mix of toor, moong and rice.
  • When grinding, ideally – add no water. But if needed, add 1-2 tsp water only.
  • Once the batter is half done, add the flavouring agents – coriander, fennel, red chilli, and pepper.
  • Add only the mentioned quantity of banana flower. If you add more, it may taste a little bitter.

IF you are not too confident of using banana flower (I hear you – I’ve never cleaned it too), you can totally use onion, cabbage, spinach too. Amma uses the same recipe for it too.

Vazhaipoo Vadai

Crispy delicious bananaflower vadais made with a mix of dals, spiced with coriander, fennel and chillies
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours


  • ½ cup channa dal
  • ½ cup toor dal
  • ¼ cup broken green moong substitute with whole green gram and increase soaking time to 4 hours.
  • 2 tsp moong dal
  • 2 tsp masoor dal you can substitute with yellow moong dal too
  • 2 tsp rice any shortgrain rice
  • 8 red chillies
  • 1 tsp fennel
  • ½ tsp corainder seeds
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 cup cleaned and chopped banana flower
  • curry leaves


  • Rinse and soak dals, rice in hot boiling water for 1.5 hours. If using regular water, soak for 3 hours.
  • Drain all water completely. Keep the dals on a colander to ensure all water is fully drained out.
  • Add the dals in multiple batches to a medium sized mixie jar and using the pulse mode, break down to a thick batter. It is important to not add any water when making the batter.Open the mixie multiple times, scrape the sides before adding extra dal.
  • In between the dals, add red chilli, fennel, pepper, coriander and grind along with it.
  • Remove the batter, add the finely chopped bananflower, curry leaves and mix well.
  • Make vadais, frying a few at a time. Keep the flame on a low to medium and fry for 6-7 minutes per batch.
  • These vadais stay crispy for a while and it is fantastic with ketchup!

Want more recipes from Amma’s Kitchen?

Please leave a comment below if you made this recipe, have any questions or thoughts! Your comment will help me learn more about your preferences and will help other readers.

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