For me its the nostalgia I get while thinking of these things and it magically transforms me back to my childhood or teen years. Summer was a time to make and store pickles for the whole year, especially mango pickles, store spices, papads were made, mangodi/moong daal vadi/ vadis which are lentil nuggets, which I attempted to make this summer. To my utter surprise it was pretty easy to make and lot of fun too.
Actually all these memories of mine are from my very early years and I always felt that it must be a rocket science to learn and make them. But it was no so difficult. I consulted with my Mom, she gave me tips and then there was some information on the net too.
About Mangodi/Vadis/Lentil nuggets
So Mangodi are nuggets made mostly with yellow moong daal also called as Moong Daal Vadi or just Vadis. Although they can also me made with any other kinds of daals or lentils. This is a dish which originally comes from Rajasthan, I guess Rajasthan being a Dessert and hence less availability of fresh produce. So mangodi/vadis used to come in very handy. They are made in different combinations like Mangodi with Papads, a a typical Rajasthani curry dish, mangodi with fresh spinach, with potatoes into a curry as well, stir fried or with cauliflower etc. These are a good change to lentils and also a power packed protein ingredient or a staple which can be cooked other then daal/lentils, being based on protein and hence a main ingredient on a vegetarian plate.
So here is what you'll need to make them.
Ingredients and Method: Wish for a sunny day!
Ingredients & Method - 4 cups of yellow moong daal: washed and soaked for around 4 hours - salt to taste - a big pinch of asafoetida - plastic sheets to make the mangodi (I took good quality shopping bags) and that is all you need. So after the daal was soaked for 4 hours, I washed it again and drained all the water from it and with the help of my hand mixer, grinder into a semi fine paste. Make sure you don't use any water, if it gets runny it will difficult to make it into shape. Add the salt and the Heeng/Asafoetida to it, mix it all well and off you go on our balcony. Cut your plastic bags or lay your plastic sheet in the sun on your balcony or terrace. with the help of your thumb, index finger and middle finger, pick up some of the mix and start forming little nuggets on the sheet. Put some weight on the corners of the sheets to avoid flying. Let it in the sun to dry. I left mine in the sun for about 3 days. The first day the top dried well, the second day I turned them around and let the bottom dry well and the third day I kept them on a tray or a plate and let them dry for a couple of hours again just to be sure that there is no moisture left in them. If there will be moisture in them, they might get some fungus in them. The third day when I put them on the plate I could hear the dryness and the crunchiness in them. I could fill two maison jars with them and now I am sure they will go for a couple of months.
Back at home they used a lot of spices like chilli powder, fennel seeds, black pepper etc. But R likes it more simple and plain and I thought so too. This way I can flavour them with whatever spices I like and they are a basic flavour just with a bit of salt and heeng. They came out really well and we love them. Other than anything it was the achievement and a little fun project for me to be able to be in the sun and make something
Do try it and if you have any questions do pop me a line. I am not sure if you can dry them in the winter months outside but I am sure in the Oven, why not! Do try with a little small amount. I also thought they might make cute little gifts too. Happy Mangodi making you guys!