Punjabi style mixed vegetable pakora

Mixed vegetable pakora/fritters is a deep fried Indian snack, which is quick and easy to make. It can be easily prepared at home anytime and enjoyed well during evenings with a cup of tea. It becomes more enjoyable during rainy season. I have prepared mix vegetable pakora or pakoda, Punjabi style.

In this recipe, you will see that I have posted two different pictures of pakora prepared with the same ingredients. The texture will be different but will taste the same. In the first picture, I did not add any water to prepare the batter and the pakoras will be crispy whereas in the second picture, water and soda are added in the batter to make the pakoras crispy from outside and soft and fluffy inside (In South India, they are called Bajji). You can prepare either way and enjoy the pakoras.

Preparation time: 20 mins

Cooking time: 20 mins

Cuisine: Punjabi

Spiciness: Medium

Serves: 3 to 4

Ingredients

  • Besan (gram flour) – 1 1/3 cup
  • Chilli powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Kasoori methi (dry fenugreek leaves) – 1 tbsp
  • Ajwain (carom seeds) – 1/4 tsp
  • Baking soda – 1/4 tsp
  • Salt - as per taste
  • Roasted spices

  • Fennel seeds – 1tsp
  • Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
  • Coriander seeds – 1 tsp
  • Vegetables

  • Onion (medium) – 1 or 85 to 100 gms
  • Spinach – 1 cup
  • Cauliflower – 70 to 80 gms
  • Potato (small) – 1 or 70 gms
  • Bell pepper (medium) – 1/2
  • Green chilli – 1 tsp
  • Ginger – 2 tsp
  • Water – 120 to 150 ml

Method

  • I have used baby spinach for making the pakoras. Wash, drain and allow it to dry or use a kitchen towel to absorb the water. Chop the spinach leaves and keep it ready.
  • Chop or slice onion, chop ginger, green chillies and other vegetables into small pieces. Keep them aside.
  • Roast all the spices except ajwain. Crush the coriander seeds, cumin seeds and fennel seeds lightly to a coarse powder by crushing them in a pestle and mortar. Do not grind too much to make a fine powder. You should be able to see the ingredients.
  • For crispy pakoras

  • Do not add water and soda.
  • Take a wide bowl. Add all the vegetables mix and the dry ingredients except besan (salt, chilli powder, turmeric powder and crushed spices). Mix well. Keep it aside for 10 minutes. Onion will release some water.
  • Add besan and mix well.
  • It will be like a tight dough. If the vegetables are sticking to each other, you can sprinkle a little water to make it slightly loose (I did not add any water). You can refer to my onion pakora/pakoda recipe. This is for the crispy pakora, not the fluffy ones.
  • When it is ready, immediately start cooking. Do not keep the mixture aside for long. The consistency of the mixture can change.
  • Heat oil in a kadai on a medium flame. Try a sample first in hot oil. If it immediately floats, then the oil is ready to fry.
  • Take a lump of the mix vegetable mixture in your hand and just scatter little by little with your fingers. No shapes required. You can cook big or small - shapeless pokadas. I have made 5 to 6 medium sized pokadas for each batch.
  • Cook on both sides until golden brown colour, it will take 4 to 5 minutes to cook.
  • Serve mix vegetable pakora immediately when hot or warm with Meethi chutney (sweet Tamarind chutney) or ketchup for kids.
  • For the fluffy pakoras

  • Add soda and water after mixing all the ingredients, to get to a thick batter (not watery) by adding water, very little at a time. Leave for 10 mins to let the soda do its magic to make the fritters fluff more.
  • Add small portion of the batter/mixture to the oil with the help of a spoon or with the help of your fingers.
  • Turn them occasionally to get a golden brown colour on your vegetable pakora.
  • Do not over crowd your kadai with pakoras.
  • Deep fry them in small batches with sufficient space to turn the pakoras.
  • Serve mix vegetable pakora immediately when hot or warm with Meethi chutney (sweet Tamarind chutney) or ketchup for kids.

Notes

  • Do not cook the pakoras on high flame as it will be raw from inside. Cooking on low flame will make the pakoras absorb excessive oil. The temperature of oil has to be just right.
  • While making batter, add less water first as onion leaves water. Then later on you can add water as per the requirement.
  • You can add white or purple cabbage. Add a few fenugreek leaves and other vegetables you like.

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