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Celebrate Pakora Day

Published : Jul 30, 2018, 12:06 am IST
Updated : Jul 30, 2018, 12:06 am IST

For all the snacks-crunching, food-gorging Indians, the word pakoras is bound to bring a smile on the face.

Kozhi Varuval
 Kozhi Varuval

For all the snacks-crunching, food-gorging Indians, the word pakoras is bound to bring a smile on the face. Ranging from Pyaaz Pakoras in Uttar Pradesh to Mundhiri Paruppu in Tamil Nadu, from Aloo Chap in West Bengal to Methi no Goto in Gujarat; almost every regional cuisine have their version of the crispy fritters. But taking a step ahead on this Pakora Day, Kshitiz Shekhar, the Executive Chef of Hotel Marine Plaza and Rushina Munshaw Ghildiyal, a food consultant share with us their own innovative spins of one the most commonly consumed finger-food in India.

This classic chicken dish from Tamil Nadu has found its place in this list. Describing it, Kshitiz says, “It will be a fritter with South Indian flavours, especially of curry-leaves and some rice flour inside it, served with red chilli paste.”

300 gm Chicken leg cubes
5 gm Curry leaves chopped
5 gm Sambhar masala
3 gm Garam masala powder
15 gm Ginger garlic paste
10 gm Red chili paste
20 ml Lemon juice
Salt to taste
50 gm Corn flour
30 ml Water
Oil for frying

1. Wash the chicken cubes and pat dry it well with kitchen paper. Add the chicken and all the ingredients in a bowl. Mix it well and let it rest for 30 minutes so that all the flavors are incorporated.

2. Heat the oil and put chicken for frying. Crisp fry it and serve hot with mint chutney.

Mixing Japanese and Indian flavours in this best-of-the-both-world combination, Chef Kshitiz talks about the inspiration behind the fusion. “In the food industry, our cuisine is shifting from not just Indian, but to a Progressive-Indian Cuisine. It will not just address India, but the whole world. There will be connectivity since we are rooted in traditions, but at the same time exploring international flavours.”

10 pcs medium size Cooked Prawns    
2 pcs Nori Sheet    

Sushi rice:
200 gm Japanese Rice
50 ml Rice Vinegar        
25 gm Sugar      
2 gm Salt    
5 ml Oil         
300 ml Water    

Tempura batter:
100 gm Tempura Flour    
100 ml Ice water    

Dipping sauce:
10 ml Soya    
30 ml Teriyaki    
2 gm Wasabi    

1. Rinse the rice in a strainer until the water runs clear. Then combine it with water in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Then reducing the heat to low, cover and cook for 20 minutes. Rice should be tender and water should be absorbed. In a small saucepan, combine the rice vinegar, oil, sugar and salt. Cook over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Cool, and then stir into the cooked rice.

2. On the nori sheet spread the rice evenly till 2/3rd of sheet. Put the prawns in the centre and roll it. Cut it into pieces. Meanwhile, mix the tempura flour with chilled ice water to form a batter. Put the sushi medallions and fry it in oil.

3. Mix soy, teriyaki and wasabi to make dipping sauce. Serve hot with the dip.

While quail eggs are considered a delicacy in East Asian and European countries, they are relatively uncommon in India. Talking about the use of these eggs, Kshitiz says, “Even though egg pakoras are common in India, I thought of using the quail eggs because they are considered to be one of the finest eggs. They are new and really beautiful because of their size.”

16 Quail eggs
100 gm Bengal gram flour (Besan)        
20 gm Rice flour
3 gm Carom seeds        
Salt to taste
2 gm Turmeric powder     
2 gm Red chili powder        
10 gm Chopped coriander leaves    
60 ml Water             
Oil for frying
50 gm Mayonnaise        
20 gm Kasundi (Bengali pickled mustard)

1. In a bowl add besan, rice flour, salt, turmeric powder and red chilli powder. Mix them well and put half of water little at time. With a whisk keep on mixing it and add remaining half so that lumps don't occur. Add carom seeds, chopped fresh coriander and mix well. The batter should be of coating consistency.

2. Boil quail eggs for 3 minutes and then peal it. Put it in the batter. Heat the oil and then fry the eggs along with the batter. Fry till crisp.

3. Mix mayonnaise and kasundi together and serve it with hot crisp quail egg pakora.

After her marriage in Garwahli household, Rushina got exposed to Garwahli cuisine and bringing to fore one such dish is a sweet-version of the fritter called gulgule. Talking about pairing it with Phirni, she says, “I really like the concept of having a custard-like thing with fried Gulgule, and that’s how I came up with it. The dish is very traditional and uses basic ingredients available.”


 1/4 cup Basmati rice, soaked  for 30 mins
 1 litre Milk (full cream)
 1/3 tbsp Sugar
 5-6 Saffron strands
For the Gulgule:
 1/4 cup Jaggery
 1/4 cup Dates, chopped fine
 1 cup Water, hot
 11/2 tbsp Ghee
 11/4 cup Whole-wheat flour
 1 tsp Chai masala
 1/4 tsp Baking powder
 Oil for frying
For the Glaze:
 1/2 cup water
 1/4 cup ginger juice
 1 tsp ginger grated
 2 tbsp sugar
 1 tbsp Walnuts, chopped (for  garnish)

For Phirni:

1. Wash and drain the rice. Pat dry on an absorbent kitchen towel. Add a little milk to the rice and blend in a mixer to a coarse paste.

2. Boil the rest of the milk and gently stir the rice paste into the milk. Cook for 10-12 minutes on a slow flame, while stirring continuously.

3. Add the sugar and saffron mixture and simmer for a few minutes. Pour into a bowl and refrigerate till required.

1. Place jaggery in a bowl and pour the hot water over it. Let it melt. Add ghee. Mix well and set it aside.

2. Shift the whole-wheat flour and baking powder into a large bowl. Add the chai masala and chopped dates. Then add the liquid ingredients and mix well with fingers or a fork. The batter should be thick and not runny. Set it aside till required.

3. Heat the oil and using a spoon, drop small amount of batter to form small balls. Fry the gulgule for 5-7 minutes or until golden brown and cook thoroughly at over medium high heat.

For the Glaze:
1. Combine the water, ginger juice, grated ginger and sugar in a small saucepan. Cook on high until the mixture becomes thick and syrupy.

2. Add in the warm gulgule and toss to coat well. Place the gulgule in a platter and drizzle phirni over. Garnish with the walnuts and serve.

Tags: pakora day