Pakoras are an all-time favorite snack in India. They are perfect for a rainy day, and delicious paired with a cup of hot spicy Indian chai. Pakoras are made with a variety of vegetables dipped in a spicy besan (gram flour) batter and deep-fried. This recipe uses potatoes, cauliflower and zucchini.
Makes about 30
- 1 small potato, sliced thin
- 8 thin slices of cauliflower
- 1/2 small zucchini, sliced thin
- 1 cup besan (gram flour) (available in Indian grocery stores)
- 3 tablespoons rice flour (optional)
- 1 tablespoon of coriander coarsely ground (dhania)
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds (jeera)
- 2 green chilies chopped
- 2 tablespoons cilantro chopped (hara dhania)
- 1 teaspoon salt adjust to taste
- 3/4 cup of water (Use water as needed)
- Oil to fry
- Mix all the dry ingredients together: besan, rice flour, coriander powder, cumin seeds, and salt. Tip: rice flour adds to the crispness.
- Add the water slowly to make a smooth batter (batter should be consistency of pancake batter or dosa batter).
- Add the green chilies and cilantro. Mix well.
- Heat at least one inch of oil in a frying pan over medium high heat. To test, put one drop of batter in the oil. The batter should form a small ball on the surface of the pan, but not change color right away.
- Dip the vegetable slices into the batter one at a time, making sure each slice is completely covered by the batter. Then drop the slices slowly into oil in the frying pan.
- Fry the pakoras in small batches, three to four minutes per batch. Fry the pakoras, turning occasionally, until both sides are golden brown.
- Repeat this process for the remaining batches.
- The crispy, delicious pakoras are now ready to serve.
If the oil is too hot the pakoras will not be crisp; if the oil is not hot enough, the pakoras will be greasy.
You can use almost any vegetable when making these pakoras, such as eggplant, onion, cabbage, bell pepper, and different kinds of chilies! Feel free to experiment!
- The vegetable pakoras are best dipped in a cilantro chutney, tamarind chutney, or sprinkled with chat masala.
- Pakoras taste best when they are served hot.
- You can make the pakoras one day in advance. Do not refrigerate. When ready to eat, place on a cookie sheet and heat in a 300°F oven.
- Leftover pakoras make good sandwiches.