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Vegetable Pakoras

The Indian favorite Pakoras are vegetables dipped in a spicy batter and deep fried to make fabulous fritters.


Yield: 4-6 servings as an appetizer 


Active Time: 30 minutes
Start to Finish: 30 minutes

For this recipe you’ll need:


For the batter:

  • 2 2/3 cups chickpea flour

  • 4 teaspoons ghee, melted (see note, below)

  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice

  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric

  • 2 teaspoons garam masala

  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander

  • Salt to taste

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups cold water, as needed


Any combination of the following:

  • Cauliflower florets

  • Zucchini, 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • Red, yellow or green peppers, cut into strips
  • Potato or sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/8-inch rounds
  • Spinach leaves
  • Eggplant, cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
  • Underripe banana, cut into 1/3-inch rounds


  • Oil for frying

    1. To prepare the batter, measure together the flour, melted ghee, lemon juice, cayenne pepper, turmeric, garam masala, coriander, salt and baking powder in a large bowl and mix well. Slowly whisk in the water until the batter is smooth and free of lumps. The batter should be slightly thicker than pancake batter. Cover and set aside for 10 to 15 minutes.

    2. Heat the oil in a heavy pot until it reaches 365°.

    3. Dip the vegetables in the batter and fry in batches until golden brown and crisp, about 3 minutes. Remove with a skimmer and allow to drain on a rack set over a sheet tray.

    4. Serve warm with Coconut-Cilantro Chutney.


To make ghee, place tablespoon-size pieces of butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook until the butter starts to bubble. You’ll notice that all of the milk solids will eventually sink to the bottom of the pan. Continue cooking the butter until the milk solids start to turn golden brown. Remove from the heat. Gently pour the butter through a cheesecloth-lined sieve, leaving the milk solids in the pan. You now have ghee.