Crispy crunchy Bengaluru special flavorful Avarekaalu Pudina Ambode is a seasonal variation of the classic Ambode made with Hyacinth Beans
With the added flavor of Pudina (mint) and Hyacinth Beans, this variant of the Ambode is a next level savory treat.
AvarekaaLu / Mochai Kottai / Chikkudu Ginjalu/ Surti Papdi lilva aka Hyacinth beans are seasonal. But nowadays in Bangalore, though we can find them all year long, the typical pungent fragrance of the Avarekaalu that one looks forward to is best during winters only.
When you visit your favorite vegetable market and the lady selling ready to buy shelled and skinned AvarekaaLu senses your eagerness and enthusiasm to buy them and then coaxes you to buy more than you ever want to by suggesting how you can freeze them in a ziplock bag and waxes elaborate about how all her customers do that and use the Avarekaalu whenever they feel like eating it. You kn0w you have fallen into her sales pitch trap willingly. You never needed her coaxing anyways.
When you fill your bag with a kilo of peeled Avarekaalu and walk away with glee but you only later realize it is more than a year’s worth of Hyacinth beans because you can never really eat as much in one full year. But you have bought it and then you must consume it at all costs without wasting.
That’s me. I bought a huge stash of peeled AvarekaaLu during the winter season and froze them promptly per the veggie lady’s suggestion.
It did last me an entire year really. Probably, a bit more than that.
I managed to use them all in different ways and the last of the frozen beans went into making this Avarekaalu Pudina Ambode.
During the winter months, there is an annual fair that occurs every year in Bangalore to celebrate the freshly harvested bounty of AvarekaaLu by name Avarekaalu parishe along with the famous Kadale Kaayi (Groundnut) parishe. AvarekaaLu Ambode is one of the popular food items that features in the food fair that happens alongside.
AvarekaaLu Pudina Ambode is a reminder of the AvarekaaLu Parishe and a delight to Avarekaalu lovers aka us Bengalooreans whose namesake is also Bendha kaalooru, the city of the boiled beans.
Whenever you make them, just remember to make them crisp. And you’ll love them.
How to get perfectly crisp Avarekaalu Ambode and other tips?
I’ll tell you this one secret to making crispy Ambode everytime.
The secret lies in not adding water while grinding the soaked Bengal gram
Not soaking the Bengal Gram or Chana Dal or Kadale Bele too long or else the dal will absorb a lot of water making the lentil paste soggy
Make sure that the ground paste patties are thin and flat before sliding it into the oil
Avarekaalu can have a gassy after effect. Do not skip the Hing in the recipe
Fresh Hyacinth beans are great. If you don’t have fresh AvarekaaLu, it can still be made well with frozen Hyacinth beans
Make sure to cook the Avarekaalu with salt before hand and let it cool to room temperature
You can also make a variation by grinding part of the cooked Avarekaalu along with the soaked Bengal gram
Can you make Ambode using dried Avarekaalu?
Yes. You could. First, you’ll have to soak the dried Avarekaalu / Hyacinth beans in water for at least 6 hours. Then, pressure cook them with salt.
Drain and use
I cannot tell you how much these Avarekaalu Ambode make for great tasting tea time snack, especially when the weather is grey and cloudy and the savory cravings begin.
So, go make and Enjoy!
You might also want to see this variation with Sapsige Soppu / Dill leaves
Hyacinth beans Ambode
- 1/4 cup avarekaalu / hyacinth beans
- 6-8 stalks Pudina / mint finely chopped
- 6 stalks curry leaves finely chopped
- 1 green chilli chopped or ground if you want more heat ~ optional
- peanut oil for deep frying
- 1/2 cup chana dal / bengal gram
- 6 byadagi red chillies
- 1/4 tsp hing
- 1/4 cup fresh grated coconut
Wash bengal gram couple of times until water runs clear. Soak them in clean water for 2 hours, not more
While the dal soaks, pressure cook Avare Kaalu / hyacinth beans with salt for 2-3 whistles
When cooker cools, drain the Avare kaalu and keep aside.
Give the soaked split bengal gram a nice wash and drain well
In a mixer jar, grind half the quantity of soaked split bengal gram and the remaining ‘to grind’ ingredients to a semi coarse paste.
To this paste, add the remaining soaked lentils and just ‘pulse‘ the mixer a few times. Make sure to not grind it to pulp. You should be able to see a few whole lentils as is. That is the texture we want for a crispy ‘Ambode’.
Transfer this coarse paste to a wide bowl.
Add finely chopped mint, curry leaves and green chillies and the cooked Avare Kaalu
season with salt and mix well.
Place oil in a kadai over medium-high heat.
When the oil is hot, test by dropping a small piece of the doough. If it rises immediately, oil is ready for frying.
Place a plate lined with paper towel nearby.
pinch off the ground mix into small lemon sized balls and pat them onto the palm of your left hand (wash your hands clean). Slowly transfer it onto your right hand four fingers.
Gently slide the patty into the oil from a safe distance (do not turn your palm down on the oil as it can splash). Repeat with about 5 patties at a time. Do not overcrowd the oil with too many.
After about 5 minutes when they float up, flip them over the other side. Using a fine mesh strainer, remove them from the kadai once golden brown and the bubbling around them settles down. Strain onto paper towel
Serve hot and enjoy!
Do not add water while grinding