Tapioca Delight (Sabudana Vada)

Enjoy this popular Indian snack, sabudana vada, with a spicy green chutney and the milky, sweet Indian tea masala chai.

Serves: 4Hands-on: 30 minutesTotal: 3 hours 30 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 4


  • 1 cup tapioca
  • 2 medium potatoes
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 2 serrano green chilies, minced
  • 2 sprigs cilantro, stemmed and minced
  • ¼ cup roughly ground unsalted peanuts
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 3 cups vegetable oil


  • Cover the tapioca with water and soak for about 3 hours. Leave some room in the bowl for expansion as the tapioca soaks up the water. After 3 hours, drain off any remaining water.
  • While the tapioca is soaking, peel and cut the potatoes into ½" cubes. Bring 6 cups water and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add potatoes and boil for 8 minutes or until just fork-tender. Drain and mash.
  • Put the drained tapioca in a mixing bowl and add all the other ingredients except the oil. Mix thoroughly with your hands.
  • Lightly oil your hands and form about 2 tablespoons of the mixture into a ball. Continue lightly oiling your hands and making balls until you have used up all the mixture.
  • Fill a deep pan with oil and heat to 350°F. Add 2-4 balls at a time and cook, turning often, until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Remove the balls from the oil and drain on a paper towel. Serve hot.