Natives & Recipe, Saidapet Vada curry

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Saidapet also known as ‘saidai’ situated in the northern Adyar river shore. There are several markets with products ranging low to high prices.

For those from the southern districts, Madras at that time would be remembered by the LIC along Mount Road and the Marina Beach. The list goes on and on, after seeing all this, one must eat Saitappettai Vadakari. Mari Hotel Vadakari is so famous. Just like leftover idli, it turns upma the next day… Leftover vada  becomes curry… So is  VadaCurry!

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Vadacurry Exclusive

Diwali, Pongal, Amavasai, temple festivals are all celebrated, on that day  urad dal vada and channa dal vada are regularly included in it. The remaining uraddal vada turns into curd vada and channa dal vada becomes vada curry. It was the Mari Hotel on VS Muddy Street that introduced this northern curry to Saidapet.

Marimuthu Devar from Vadaseri near Thanjavur is the chef of this restaurant. He came to Chennai  50 years ago in search of livelihood and started a small tea shop. He also cooked and sold dal vada, medu vada and bonda. He has converted the remaining dal vada into vada curry at his home and ate it. He then make sure that the vada is left for the vada curry to be delicious!


  • 1 cup of chickpeas
  • Big Onion – 1 (finely chopped)
  • Small Onion – 2
  • Tomato-1
  • Green Chillies – 3
  • Garlic-2 tooth
  • Chilli – 2
  • Ginger garlic paste – 1 spoon
  • Mint-slightly
  • Coriander – a little
  • Oil – required quantity
  • Brinji leaves- – 1
  • Anise -1/2 spoon
  • Clove-5
  • Chili powder – 1 spoon
  • Coriander – 1/2 spoon
  • Garam Masala – 1/2 spoon
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 spoon
  • salt – as required
  • Coconut – 3 tbsp
  • Cashews – 3
  • Poppy seeds – 1/2 spoon

Preparation Method

First, Soak 1 cup of chickpeas in water for 2 hours and in a mixing jar, add garlic, red chilies and required amount of salt and filter the soaked chickpeas water well.

Grind it coarsely without adding water, then pour oil in a pan and when it dries, grind it.

Make small balls of the chickpea mixture, and drop in medium hot oil, after it turns golden brown, drain the oil well and keep aside. Next, pour some oil in a pan and when it is hot, add some brinjhi leaves, aniseed, cloves and fry it. Add finely chopped onion to it.

After the onion is fried a little, add the ginger garlic paste and fry it. Saute till the ginger garlic paste is cooked and then add green chilies, some coriander and mint.

Next, add the finely chopped tomatoes, after the tomatoes are mashed well, add chilli powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder and garam masala and saute it, sprinkling some water and sautéing it.

Then pour 3 cups of water and let it boil. After the mixture boils, add the fried vadas and boil for 4 minutes.

Next add cashews, grated coconut and poppy seeds in a mixer jar and grind it with little water.

Now add the grated coconut to the mixture and let it boil for 1 minute sprinkle the chopped coriander powder and switch off the stove.

Delicious vadacurry is ready