Vegetable Pakoras

28 Nov

I’ve made pakora-inspired fried vegetable fritters a number of times in different contexts. After some experimentation, here’s the approach I like best:

Coarsely shred a range of root vegetables, alliums, and brassicas.

  • My favorite mix: carrots, onions, broccoli, cauliflower
  • An alternate winter mix: Brussels sprouts, onions, carrots, cabbage

For a large batch of pakoras as appetizers for a 12-person dinner party, I combined:

  • 6 cups coarsely shredded vegetables (squeeze in a colander to get as much liquid out of them as possible)
  • 6 small green chiles, chopped
  • 1 tsp crushed garlic (or more)
  • 1 tsp grated ginger (or more)
  • 1 T garam masala

I let them sit for another 30 minutes in the colander to drain, then squeezed the liquid out of them one more time. Then added:

  • 1 tsp ajwain
  • 1 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/2 cup white flour

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I heated a pot of oil over medium heat (target: 375 degrees F? I didn’t have a thermometer at the time), then dropped in spoonfuls of loosely-packed batter one at a time:

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I fiddled with the temperature to get it to a point where the pakora batter floated back to the top, and turned golden brown over the course of about five minutes while cooking through– too hot and the outside turned dark brown while it was still raw inside, too cool and it just absorbed oil and never browned.

As they finished, I put them on a wire rack (not paper towels) to drain– this keeps them crispy by allowing moisture to escape. There was no way to be precise without tasting some…

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Succcess!

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