This is a snack made in most parts of India, it is just known by different names. In the north it goes with the name of dal pakodi, in western India it is called dal vada and in the South paruppu vada or masala vada.
Here is the recipe I followed...
1 cup channa dal,
¼ cup moong dal,
1 medium sized onion (finely chopped),
Green chillies to taste (finely chopped),
Salt to taste,
½ tsp cumin powder,
¼ tsp garam masala powder,
1 tsp coriander powder,
1 tsp red chilli powder,
1 tsp ginger paste,
1 tsp garlic paste,
½ tsp fennel seeds,
Some chopped curry leaves,
A pinch of asafoetida,
Oil for deep frying
Soak both the dals together for at least 2 hours. Reserve about 1 – 1 ½ tbsp of soaked dal and grind the rest into a coarse paste with the fennel. Try to grind this without adding any water, if required add as little water as possible.
Now add the reserved dal to the dal paste (this gives it a nice texture) and all other ingredients except the oil.
Heat the oil in a frying pan and when hot drop about a table spoon of the batter in the oil and deep-fry on a medium heat will golden brown.
Serve hot with green chutney.