Punjabi Kadhi Pakora – ICC Sep 2010
I had not been able to participate in the ICC (Indian Cooking Challenge) for the past two months due to various reasons. This month when Srivalli announced that the september challenge is Punjabi Kadhi pakora, I was ecstatic. Though I am very fond of this kadhi, I was surprised that I had never ever tried making it at home. Because whenever I feel like having kadhi, I settle with its south Indian counterpart, Mor Kuzhambu, but this is a pleasant change. This is a fairly simple recipe, but a true comfort food. A bowl of kadhi pakora and steaming hot rice can always perk me up. Simran of the Bombay Foodie, gave this incredibly simple and tasty recipe. Thanks Simran, my quest for the best kadhi pakora ends here!!!
The trick to a perfect kadhi pakora is to make soft pakoras, that become perfectly spongy in the kadhi and then melt in your mouth. So take care not to cook your pakoras too crispy. This is basically Simran’s recipe, I have just added a few ingredients that I like in my kadhi.
For the Pakora/Pakoda:
Besan/Chickpea flour – 1 1/2 cups
Onion – 1 small (chopped or sliced)
Green chilli/Serrano pepper – 2 no. (optional)
Red chilli powder – 1 tsp (or more)
Kasuri Methi – 2 tsp (crushed between your palms)
Salt – to taste
Water – as required (about 3/4 cup, depending on the moisture in onions)
Oil – for deep frying
For the Kadhi:
Curd/Yogurt – 1 cup
Besan/Chickpea flour – 1/3 cup
Water – 4-5 cups
Haldi/Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
Onion – 1 small
Green chilli – 2 no. (optional)
Red chilli powder – 1 tsp
Salt – to taste
Garam Masala – 1/2 tsp
Amchur – 1 tsp (Do not use this if your curd is very sour)
Oil – 2 tsp
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Ajwain/Carom seeds – 1 tsp
Methi/Fenugreek seeds – 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves – a few leaves (optional)
For the Pakora:
- Heat at least 2 inches of oil in a kadai/saucepan for deep frying.
- Mix all the ingredients for the pakora and add water to make a batter that is neither too thick nor too thin. You should be able to drop the batter into the oil with your fingers or a spoon. Adjust salt to taste.
- When the oil is hot enough, drop small portions of dough into the oil and deep fry till golden brown on medium high flame.
Tip: Don’t heat the oil too much or the pakoras will cook on the outside and remain raw inside.
- Drain on paper towels. Keep aside.
For the Kadhi:
- Mix the besan and yogurt thoroughly. Add 3-4 cups of water to this.
- Heat oil a saucepan and add the mustard seeds. Once the mustard splutters, add the cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, ajwain and curry leaves.
- Add the chopped onions and saute for some time. Now mix in the haldi and chilli powder and saute for 30 seconds.
- Pour the besan and yogurt mixture from step 1 into the tempering. Add salt to taste. Bring to a boil and then let simmer for 15-20 mins, stirring frequently. The consistency of Punjabi kadhi is usually thicker than the Gujrati kadhi. But you can definitely adjust the consistency to your liking by adiing more/less water.
- Finish with garam masala and amchur. Add the pakoras and cook for a minute. Garnish with coriander leaves if you would like to.
Serve hot with rice or roti.