Prep 20 mins
Cook 20 mins
Fritters or pakoras are considered the most readily available snack any time of the day. It is a treat especially in cold rainy weather when the aroma of fried dough and vegetables is very comforting. These can be made in advance and frozen. Warm in a 350 degreeF oven before serving. Makes 40-45 pieces. This is from Kusum's book 'Recipes with a Spice - Indian cuisine for balanced nutrition'.
- 3 cups gram flour (besan)
- 1⁄2 cup rice flour
- 10 ounces chopped spinach
- 2 chopped onions
- 2 potatoes, chopped or grated
- oil (for frying, about 2-inch deep in a wok)
- 1 teaspoon crushed green chili pepper
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons coriander powder
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 1 teaspoon mango powder
- 1 teaspoon crushed pomegranate seeds (optional)
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Sift the gram flour.
- Mix all the ingredients (except oil), to make a smooth and thick (almost like dough) batter.
- Cover and let it stand for ½ hour.
- Sprinkle little water if needed.
- (If using frozen spinach, thaw before using.) Blend in all the seasonings (except salt) and mix well.
- (You may chill the batter in the refrigerator for about 2 hours or more until it can be handled.) Mix in salt when ready to cook.
- Heat the oil in a deep skillet or wok on medium to high heat.
- For each pakora, scoop a heaped teaspoon of the batter, and with a second spoon, scrape the mixture into the hot oil.
- Put the'pakoras' in a single layer in the skillet.
- Fry, turning them with a slotted flat spatula, until all sides become golden brown.
- (Regulate the heat as needed while the'pakoras' are being fried.) Remove and drain on paper towels or brown paper bag lined with plastic.
- Fry all the'pakoras' this way.
- Serve hot with any chutney.
- Variation: Add 1 cup corn kernels to the mixture for extra crispness.
- May also add ½ teaspoon baking soda to ensure softness.
My first approach to making pakora. Made these with chard instead of spinach and followed eatreal's suggestion to use the baking soda. I agree with eatrealfood that frozen spinach would not work well in this. The dough was indeed spongy and easy to handle, and the pakoras baked up nicely. Served with hot mango chutney. They got rave reviews, so I'll be making them again. Thanks for posting!
i don't think the baking soda should be optional in this, it's absolutely essential and should be included in the ingredients. i wasted two batches of batter which resulted in fritters which were tough and doughlike. when i added some baking soda the texture was nicely spongy and soft. i used fresh spinach (personally i don't think frozen would work well at all in this).
This is just the recipe i was looking for to duplicate the best pakoras i've ever eaten, nearly 40 years ago in Washington, D.C.. I love that she combines the three vegetables in the batter, which is how they were made where i used to eat them. Also, just went to Amazon and bought her cookbook (she has two in print), so i am looking forward to trying more of her delicious and authentic recipes!!