This Vegetable Pakora recipe is versatile and easy, a classic South African Batter Dipped Fritter, that is perfect all year round.
PAKORA, is any vegetable or meat that is coated in a batter and fried. A popular, fried snack that Originated from the Indian subcontinent. HERE IN SOUTH AFRICA, These are also referred to as Bhajiya or Fritters. This version, is more common among Family’s of Indian Descent in South Africa, and each family having their own take on this popular snack.
Staying with OLD SCHOOL CLASSICS this Ramadaan, I remember my late mum often making these for us. And like other families, we each had a favourite vegetable we enjoyed as Pakora. Whilst My late mum and Dad, and the rest of the elders at home enjoyed Eggplant (brinjal) pakora, the kids mostly wanted the potato version. Generally, the batter is made up using Gram flour (Chickpea Flour), but in our home, a basic cake flour batter was enjoyed a lot more. So the age old classic recipe that was passed down generations in my family, is what I still use today.
This post, also takes me back to our trip to India, and How much I enjoyed the vegetable pakoras in Munnar, Kerala. Nothing beats A hot pakora and a steaming cup of Masala Chai, on a cold rainy afternoon overlooking the Tea Plantation valleys of Munnar below.
You will find my recipe not heavily laden with spices, and also has Fresh Coriander added to the batter. Not what is usually found in pakora in India. You can however adjust spices more to your liking. Today I feature the Eggplant and Potato pakora, And only difference is the prepping bit for the eggplant. Otherwise, all vegetable pakora, can be made with a basic batter recipe, into which sliced vegetables are dipped before frying.
I do hope you give this OLD SCHOOL CLASSIC a try, and I am sure, Vegetable Pakora will become a firm favourite in your home too.
HAPPY ‘PAKORA’ FRYING LOVELIES
Vegetable Pakora - Marsay Family Favourite
AUTHOR: FOODEVA MARSAY (@foodeva_marsay)
INGREDIENTS AND INSTRUCTIONS
STEP 1: PREPARE THE VEGETABLES …
FOR EGGPLANT (BRINJAL) PAKORA
~ SLICE 1 LARGE EGGPLANT, into rings with skin on.
~ Soak the sliced Eggplants in water, with 1/2 teaspoon salt, for 5 minutes (This removes any bitterness)
~ After 5 minutes, remove eggplant slices, and Gently blot away excess water, using a kitchen towel or paper towel.
~ sprinkle onto the eggplant slices, a little bit of turmeric powder, on both sides of eggplant. You are now ready to dip the eggplants into the batter.
FOR POTATO PAKORA
~ Thinly slice 2-3 medium sized Peeled Potatoes.
~ Rinse and Blot dry the slice. Lightly season the potato slices with a sprinkle of salt. You are now ready to dip Potato Slices into the batter.
STEP 2: PREPARE THE BATTER …
YOU WILL NEED
3/4 Cup Cake Flour (OR GRAM FLOUR)
1/4 Cup Maizena
1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/4 teaspoon Turmeric Powder
1/4 teaspoon Chilli Powder
1/2 teaspoon Chilli Flakes (Crushed chillies)
1 teaspoon Salt
2-3 Tablespoon Chopped Fresh Coriander
+/- 3/4 Cup Water (regular Tap Water)
~ Add dry ingredients and coriander to a dish, and mix through well.
~ Gradually add the water, to form a batter that is slightly pourable, yet sticky enough to adhere the to the sliced vegetables.
STEP 3: FRY THE PAKORA …
~ On medium High, Heat about 1 cup of Vegetable Oil in a frying pan.
~ Test the heat of the oil, by dropping in a little of the batter, it should begin frying as soon as it touched the bottom.
~ Now dip each slice of prepared vegetable, into the batter, coating each slice well. And gently add the batter dipped slices to the oil.
~ Fry the Pakoras until crisp and vegetables are done. (with potato pakora, you can use a knife to make a few incisions through the batter, to help the potatoes cook through well.)
~ Remove the Vegetable Pakora with a slotted spoon, drain well, and place onto kitchen paper towels to further absorb excess oil.
~ Serve immediately with your family favourite Chutney on the side.
NOTES BY FOODEVA MARSAY
> Remember, You can substitute the cake flour with GRAM FLOUR (Chickpea Flour)
> The Coriander can be omitted, but it truly gives the pakora a delightful flavour.
> Adjust spice amounts to suit your palette
> A regular Store bought Variety of Batter Mix can also be used. (Chilli Bite Mix)
> And for a healthier version, Try ‘frying’ the pakora’s in an Air-fryer (if you have one).
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