I rarely deep-fry things in my kitchen and that’s why it has taken me all this time to post the most popular tea time snack of India. If you were to run a poll between samosas and pakoras, i am almost positive that pakoras will win hands down because its much easier to make and it requires basic, everyday ingredients to put together this tasty snack. On a cold, rainy day nothing is more comforting than a plate of warm pakoras and steaming hot chai. I have used onions in this recipe, but you can use cauliflower, potato, paneer (Indian cheese) or a combination of veggies. If you plan to make this for a party, fry them up and store them in an oven proof bowl covered tightly with aluminum foil at 300F, they will remain warm, crispy and fresh. You can eat these pakoras plain or sandwich them between two slices of bread with green chutney for a filling lunch.
1 large red onion, sliced lengthwise
1/2 cup mint leaves
1/2 cup chickpea flour
1/4 cup rice flour
1 teaspoon red chili powder
1/4 teaspoon asafetida
1.5 teaspoons fennel seeds
1 Thai green chili, roughly chopped
1 inch piece ginger, minced
5-6 curry leaves
chaat masala (optional)
1. Place all the ingredients except oil and chaat masala in a bowl.
2. Add 2 tablespoons of hot oil and mix well to form a dry mixture. The water from the onion should be sufficient to bring the mixture together, sprinkle very little water if needed.
3. Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pan and when oil is hot, add a pinch of pakora batter. Do not make a ball or flatten them, it should be shapeless.
4. Cook on medium heat till golden brown and crispy.
5. Remove with slotted spoon and sprinkle chaat masala on top (optional).