When I go to an Indian restaurant, one of the food items that I look for is the pakoras. Made with garbanzo flour, these crisp little snackie treats are the perfect vehicle for any flavor that you want to add to them. Many pakora recipes call for dipping whole pieces of vegetables, meat, or paneer (Indian cheese) into a batter made from the garbanzo bean flour. Others suggest adding chopped ingredients to the batter.
My recipe for pakora patties is even easier than that! Grate some juicy vegetables. I use onion and a summer-type squash or cucumber. Add seasonings, and then stir in the garbanzo bean flour. Let the ingredients stand for a few minutes, stir again, and then fry the patties. Easy-peasy!
Pakora Patties for Sandwiches
½ cup of coarsely grated cucumber, zucchini, or yellow squash
¼ cup grated onion
1/8 teaspoon Lawry's seasoned salt
¼ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
½ teaspoon cumin seeds
½ teaspoon of your favorite curry powder
½ teaspoon of dill weed (I use Lighthouse brand.)
1 tablespoon of coarsely chopped pickled ginger
2 teaspoons of liquid from the pickled ginger jar
¼-½ cup of garbanzo bean flour (I used Bob's Red Mill brand.)
1/8 teaspoon of baking powder
Oil for frying (I used a canola and coconut combination, but any mild-flavored oil will work well.)
In a medium bowl, add the grated onion and squash. Stir in the Lawry's, Old Bay, cumin seeds, curry powder, dill, pickled ginger, and ginger juice. Add ¼ cup of garbanzo flour and the baking powder. Stir well. If the mixture holds together and looks like a thick, lumpy batter, that's enough garbanzo flour. How much garbanzo flour is added depends on the juiciness of your vegetables. If the ¼ cup of garbanzo flour is not enough, add a tablespoon of garbanzo flour at a time, stirring after each addition, until the batter is thick and lumpy looking. It should drop easily from a spoon. The batter should be slightly runny, like a fritter batter. Let the batter stand for five minutes, then stir it again. It's ready to fry!
In a heavy pan, add enough oil to cover the pan about one-quarter of an inch deep. Heat the oil until a bit of the batter dropped into the oil sizzles. Then, drop the batter using a small serving spoon into the hot oil. Flatten each patty as it is dropped into the oil. Don't overcrowd the pan. Do not let the pakoras touch. You will need to cook several batches. Turn the heat down to medium and fry them until they are golden brown. Then, use a fork or spatula to turn them. Cook the second sides until they are golden brown.
The pakoras can be anywhere from two inches across to as large as the palm of your hand. It depends on your needs. Smaller pakoras take about 2-3 minutes to cook. Add time for the larger pakoras. When they have finished cooking, drain them on paper towels. You may use them immediately for your sandwiches, or you may refrigerate them and re heat the pakoras just before serving.
Wrap sandwich- use a flour tortilla or naan as a wrap. Add shredded lettuce, slivered onions, and sliced tomatoes to small pakoras. Then, drizzle cucumber sauce over the pakoras and vegetables. Roll the ingredients into a wrap.
Pita pocket sandwich- Take a half of a pita and gently open it to make the pocket. Slide a large pakora into the pocket. Add chutney, spinach leaves or alfalfa sprouts and Pico de Gallo.
Garbanzo bean flour is extremely nutritious. It has 110 calories in ¼ cup. There are 16 grams of carbohydrate, which includes 5 grams of fiber. Within that quarter cup of garbanzo flour, there are 6 grams of protein and 10% of your daily requirement for iron. Garbanzo bean flour is known as besan when you buy it at an Indian grocery.
What condiments will you pair with your pakoras? This lovely vegan sandwich filling can be matched up with many different condiments for a variety of flavors. Use your creativity! As always, feel free to change the spicing to suit your tastes. Experiment with other vegetables. Let us know about your creations in the BellaOnline Sandwiches Forum.
Related links: The Related Links below this article may be of interest to you. Some contain sauce recipes. Others are side dishes.
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