Elai Vadam ( Translated as Rice batter with some spices steam cooked on plantain leaves.. )
The only vadam / wafer that I make almost every summer in a small qty . Not at all time consuming as many would think . I prepare the batter in the morning or evening , allow to rest overnight , and take out small quantities , smear on plantain leaves cut to convenient size to fit in the steamer, steam cook ( takes less than a minute per elai / leaf ) lay out inside my house on a mat or on the dining table , under fan , and sun dry later when sufficient quantities have been air dried inside house. . All this in the midst of daily cooking .
For a person who enjoys a variety of cooking and now adays even managing to post in a blog , make short videos too, making vadams is just not my cup of tea, the sheer hours of effort and patience is not very encouraging . Or so i thought !..It is just the mind ..and iam now willing to take back my previous observations as vadam making can be fun , and not the dreary work you thought . Especially leaf vadam or elai vadam to be specific. All you need is good thick smooth rice batter , and even rice flour works well too . Add in some spices, allow batter to rest and after 8 to 12 hours , you can smear a banana leaf, steam it and do this continuously , as much as you want , getting bored ? dont worry , put back the remaining batter in fridge and continue when your mind is ready ..;-)
You need to prepare the batter in evening preferably , allow to rest overnight and start making them as and when convenient . I also use the same for making dosas as it is fermented 😉 , therefore no wastage and two in one recipe 😉 . I do not set aside separate time in kitchen to prepare these . If you have two or three burners you can steam them quicker .
Elai vadam stand is available in market with some plates which you can grease and use but I prefer the plantain leaf . One leaf can be used few times . It also makes it very aromatic
There are two ways to make the batter, one is to grind raw rice with some sago ( optional ) after soaking for 4 hours , grind to a very smooth buttery consistency, like paste ,( when applied on leaf , the batter must not run over ) , allow to rest as the batter needs a little sour taste , add some green chilly paste, asafoetida powder, salt , cumin or carom seeds .
You can also make this vadam by using rice flour and sago flour, just mix to a thick batter, allow to rest overnight .You can prepare many flavors of this rice vadam, i keep it simple with few spices.i like to add some sago , as it gives a nice crunchy vadam when deep fried.
Kindly check my YouTube video for more details , here below is a quick video of the process.