Everyone is invited….

Last year, on the first blogversary of A Mad Tea Party, I got rambling on the matter of food and diet. As I had wished, it did get a life of its own and we did stray into other things…with food as a point of beginning.  There was fun and trickery, food and drink, and periodic indulgences. But you know and I know that this blog would not be A Mad Tea Party without the jabberwocks and their nonsense prose (or verse sometimes!). They get the party going…way off-track on most occasions!  I hope you will all join in the madness and indulge me again this year.

Last year we had a table loaded with poori-bhaji.  And this year by popular choice (and because Bee loves them so…), I have decided the time has come to fry batata-vada.  Batter fried spiced mashed potato balls – that’s batata vada deconstructed for you.  It is not just any street-food.  As vada pav it is so much more! Almost the essence of Bombay – containing within it the struggle for survival in the city of dreams.

The rules are simple:

  • Cook batata-vada from now into next month (last date Aug 24) write a post about it (with or without a recipe D ), how you enjoyed it, maybe a picture of the meal and/or the family enjoying the meal. (Old posts don’t count!)
  • Too hot to fry? Go out and get some! The portion will be right, and you don’t have to fry ‘nothing’! Write a post about it, and how you really enjoyed it!
  • Link to this post. You may, if you like, use a Pingback and it will automatically show up in the comments here. Or leave a comment here which will lead us to your post!
  • Don’t have a blog? You can still join the party; just leave a comment here about how you enjoyed your batata-vada! Feel free to provide links to any pictures you may have posted on a photo-sharing site such as Flickr or Photobucket.  I will include your name in the list of those who participated!

NOTE: It has to be strictly batata vada or a variation of it (such as aloo bonda).  No other vada qualifies for the party! Basically, batter fried spiced mashed potatoes only. How you serve them, is up to you.  You are free to cook up whatever else you want for The Party as long as you bring batata vada!

If a health condition prevents you from enjoying this food, we understand. Responsible cooking and eating comes first. Always.

It is also India’s Independence Day on August 15. Another reason to celebrate! I hope all of you (Indians as well as those of other nationalities) will join in!  I will write a post in the last week of Aug with my version of batata-vada, and a roundup!

To get you started, here is Shilpa’s recipe (read through the comments for suggestions on variations as well as accompanying chutneys).  Here’s another. In our house this coconut-coriander chutney is a must!  Did you know there is a sweet version of aloo bonda?  Apparently there is!

Looking forward to some deep-fried food from all of you!  Read the posts from last year to get the preamble on how we got deep-frying!  Neroli and her guys captured and expressed the spirit behind this event so eloquently last time.  I hope she can find the time this year as well.


Published by Anita

A self professed urban ecologist!

48 thoughts on “Everyone is invited….

  1. <>

    go out and get what? do you have any clue where i live? there’s no batata vada sold in my entire state and it’s a HUGE state. if they flatten all the mountains here, it’s bigger than texas. there’s no batata vada or even dosa sold here. all the way to canada. NONE.

    as for frying up potatoes in gram flour … ugh … do you even know how many sulphuric emissions this event is going to generate around the world? i thought this was an environmentally friendly blog.

    **holds nose and flees**

    You’ll be back, I know. You already have the potatoes and the peas too! 😆

  2. hi anita…
    i too am in …for the strangest of celebrations…like we had last year…cheers!!!

    I’m counting on you!

  3. Dunno about Bee (the lady is unpredictable anyway), but your party is sure to make a certain political party in Maharashtra happy 🙂

    You think? They will be happy to have ‘converted’ a North Indian… But I hope they don’t use the batata vada to exclude – we all like it – so much more fun to be inclusive!

  4. Count me in 🙂 Let’s fry the batata vadas and make it a real mad tea party 😀

    O O here she comes…with the band-baaja! We have waited long for you to come out of that slumber! I knew you couldn’t turn down a good party!

  5. Bee, but you sure have the main ingredient handy. Taters!

    Emissions? No! NO! NO! It’s the practice of levitation. First from the potatoes. Next from the besan. And the fat will keep you in mid-air longer.

    Like I said, I’m in. Swimming! Swimming! Let’s go swimming.

    [Bambai se aaya mera dost…dost ko salaam karo!]

    Really, she from the docks and all, and saying such blasphemous stuff about the poor batata vada…

  6. Batata vada or the potato bonda has been in my drafts for 12 months and Vada Pav for 6… I’ll post both… will make up for my late entry last year 🙂

    …and I am providing the perfect occasion! Looking forward to it.

  7. hey anita you have not replied to shilpa’s question..do samosas qualify??

    for Bee..we can do anything!!!..:)

    Nope, no samosas. Not this time, anyway! 😉

  8. oh you naughty girl – making me cook something so sinful in my kitchen. LOL! but I have to give it a go!

    We must give in every now and then…and you can lay the blame at my doorstep this time!

  9. Oh, these…the mashed-potato ball pakora thingies….yeah, I was at a buffet once and they were there looking so round and golden and I wanted to try them with every chatni they had and I was getting looks you know…? So, I found that three of them could be hidden under a half-round of naan. 🙂 I’ve yet to have ’em in a bun, but I do recall that there was some onion-tamarind gloop that went pretty swell with ’em. Yah. But just you know, they disintegrate when simmered in karhi/kadhi. 😦

    I remember taking them to one of our weekly weekend class parties…these were gone in no time! But I don’t think you were in Kansas, were you? I would have remembered…
    You added them to kadhi?! 😆
    Well, get ready to fry some of your own!

  10. I just made a Mumbaiyya frnd this weekend, will try to get a recipe from her or…may be I’ll ask her to make some in her kitchen while the sincere me watches and takes notes, me good student you know 😛

    Good idea… to watch carefully…as the friend fries…and you take notes. A very good idea!

  11. It is always such a delight to read your posts..how how how how do you manage to come up with such party ideas? You are an absolute darling! Just when I am trying to lose weight by eating turkey sandwiches, you pull me out of my dire “sanyas” 🙂 Will be there for sure..

    Ah the perfect balance for you then! 😆 I haven’t made these in 2 years myself…
    I have to admit this time the idea came from Manisha, and Bee’s yearning sealed it!

  12. Count me in! Nothing better than batata vadas (I also have a maha soft spot for onion and chilli pakodas) with masala chai, and sitting with my nose pressed to the window watching the rains wash everything clean. Kahan gaye woh din

    Bring back those days! We just got too wrapped up in other pursuits! Looking forward to your participation.

    I made potato and onion bhajjies last week! Yum!

  13. whoa!! quite an exchange going on here!! hmmm batata vadas….i have tagged you for something….hop over to pick it up please?? before you get all busy with this party!!

    Yup – hopefully, they will extract themselves long enough to fry some!
    Thanks for the tag! I will get to it…sooner or later!

  14. I had missed your party last year, since I was not blogging then, but I have been reading a lot about it & thinking what fun it must have been! I am joining this year for sure.

    Glad that you are planning to join this year! Non-bloggers van share in the fun too though! All that is required is that you have some batata vada!

  15. What a lovely way to entice us non fryers to have some good soul food 🙂 especially someone who has left Mumbai 11 years back and hankers for batata wada but can’t get herself to pour that oil into the kadai. Its also perfect for the rainy weather we are having in Delhi – so here I come!
    Thanks for the invite!

    Right, Miri – this is specially for those who seldom fry. Which has come to include most of us these days!

  16. Woohoo!! Great idea..During my non-blogging days I read about the puri-bhaji party and was so jealous! Not going to miss this one..:-D

    Great! Now get into the kitchen or to your nearest batata-vada stall!

  17. Batata vada was a staple for me n my colleagyes trying to make it big in our first job in Bombay when pay is peanuts and hours long, batata vada has been many a b’fast, lunch and dinner….looking over all the entries was trip down memory lane,ah!those days!!…well congrats on u r blogversary…love u r blog and happy partying,people!!!

  18. hi there…its been a while since i wrote. pann mubarak to you, btw.
    i made batata vadas yesterday…just on a whim. my husband almost fell over when he came home…he loved them! they’re actually pretty easy to make…and yummy! thanks for posting this recipe.

    Hi anu. Pun mubarak to you too. Was busy with that yesterday – mom and us three daughters!

    Happy shock for TH, eh?

    1. Sorry. But why would it hurt in the behind, I wonder… It’s not to be read in a rush anyway. Slow down, get home, sit down with a cup of tea, turn on your laptop…It will be fun instead of pain!

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