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Nadan Chemmeen Vada Recipe | Kerala Style Prawn Cutlets | Kerala's Traditional prawns cutlets


Chemmeen Vada

Nadan Chemmeen vada with step by step photos and video

Chemmeen vada is a traditional Kerala snack made with prawns. Chemmeen is the Malayalam name for prawns and vada means deep fried patties. This delicious Kerala traditional snack is so easy to prepare and needs only some simple and common ingredients available in our pantry. This can be shallow fried or deep fried and I prefer deep frying to get even browning all over. There are so many ways to prepare chemmeen vada. It can be grind raw or boiled. Today, I will share the recipe which I tasted in my childhood.  

Other prawn recipes

  1. Prawns Hakka Noodles
  2. Butterfly Crumbled Prawns
  3. Chemmeen Biriyani
  4. Urulakizhangu Chemmeen Varutharachathu


Nadan Chemmeen cutlets Recipe | How to make prawn cutlets | Chemmeen Vada Recipe
Fried Prawns Starter

Preparation time: 15 minutes | Cooking time: 20 minutes | Total time: 25 minutes



  • 200 gram cleaned and deveined prawns
  • 2 to 3 green chilies
  • 1 small piece of ginger, cleaned
  • 1 spring curry leaves
  • 1.5 cup grated coconut
  • Chili powder as needed
  • Salt as needed
  • Oil for frying

How to make Chemmeen vada

  1. Transfer prawns into a thick bottomed pan or a earthen pot. Put salt and turmeric powder. Cover with a lid and cook on high flame. Reduce the flame to medium, when the water start to release from the prawn.
    Chemmeen vada - Prawns with salt and turmeric powder

  2. When the prawns are cooked well nicely and beautifully, open the lid and cook till all the water evaporate from the prawns. You can increase the flame to high. Keep aside and let is cool down completely. 
    Chemmeen Vada - Cooked prawns

  3. Put ginger, green chilies and curry leaves in a mixer grinder. Adjust the amount to your taste. You can add some shallots also.  
    Chemmeen vada - green chilies, ginger and curry leaves for grinding

  4. Crush the spices using the pulse button of your mixer grinder. Then add cooked prawns and crush again. Before crushing the prawns do remember to measure using a glass or measuring cup. Do not make paste, but crush them into a coarse mixture as shouwn in the picture below
    Chemmeen Biriyani - Crushed spices and cooled prawns

  5. Transfer the prawns into an another bowl.
    Chemmeen Vada - Crushed prawns along with spices

  6. Add coconut in the same mixer grinder. The amount of coconut should be same prawns. If one cup of prawns then use one cup of coconut. Here the prawns measure about 1.5 cups so I sue 1.5 cups of coconut shavings. Add red chili powder, if looking for a spicy vada. You can also put a few black peppercorns at this stage. 
    Chemmeen Vada - Coconut and red chili powder

  7. Crush into a coarse mixture. Do not over mix. 
    Chemmeen vada - crushed coconut

  8. Transfer to the bowl in which you kept crushed prawns. Then well with your hands. The mix should not be loose, but should be moist and should hold its shape when you make balls. Do a taste test and add salt and chili powder if needed.
    Chemmeen Vada - Mixing the vada mix

  9. Make small balls of desired size, gently flatten between your palm and shape it.
    Chemmeen Vada - shaped prawn mix

  10. Deep fry in hot oil, the oil should be hot, otherwise the patties will break. If the vada mix come loose, then shallow frying will be best.
    Chemmeen Vada - Frying chemmeen vada

  11. When golden brown on both sides, take out from oil and serve hot.
    Chemmeen Vada is ready

  12. Enjoy.
    Chemmeen Vada

Happy Cooking

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