Deepavali/Diwali is the festival of lights that symbolizes the spiritual “victory of light over darkness, good over evil, and knowledge over ignorance. This festival is associated with goddess Lakshmi and various regional traditions. One of the main traditions goes back to Rama returning Ayodya with his wife Sita after defeating Ravana and serving 14 years of exile. Deepavali is celebrated with people making snacks and sweets and wearing new clothes and going to temples.
Oma Podi is a traditional Sri Lankan and South Indian snack made from kadalai ma/Besan flour/yellow split pea flour. As far as I can remember my mother used to make this for the Sri Lankan New Year that falls in April, Diwali and some times just like that for evening snack. Even though this is fried, I consider this as a very healthy snack. When the dough is made at the right consistency Oma Podi does not absorb a lot of oil when fried. For Oma Podi, all purpose flour/white flour should be steamed and sifted.
Also Omam is considered to be good for stomach. It’s used both for constipation as well as diarrhea as per ayurvedic medicine.
- 1 cup besan/yellow split pea flour (kadali ma)
- ½ cup steamed all purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon omam
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- ¼ cup water at room temperature
- Oil for deep frying
- Grind Omam in a coffee grinder into fine powder
- In a large bowl add besan, all purpose flour, ground omam, salt, and chili powder and mix well.
- Add a little water at a time and mix the flour into a soft and smooth dough. The dough should look like either chappati or bread dough. It should not be too wet or too dry. If it’s too wet and soggy, oma podi will not become crispy. But if the dough is too dry, it will be difficult to squeeze the dough through the oma podi maker tool (ural).
- in a large pan or wok add enough oil. Once the oil is hot, add a spoon full of the dough into the base of oma podi maker and with the top part squeeze oma podi directly into hot oil.
- Fry for a minute or two and turn to the other side and fry for further 2 or 3 minutes.
- Drain on paper towel
- Store in an air tight container for a week
Note: Oma Podi Ural:
Oma podi ural has 3 parts – bottom base, disc and the top part of the ural. When making oma podi, make sure you place the disc inside the base of the oma podi ural. Then add a spoon full of the dough and place the top part of ural on top of the base and squeeze the dough that will come out as strands from the bottom side of the ural. When adding dough, ensure not to add too much since this will make it difficult the press in the dough.