Pakora is a crispy Indian street snack made with vegetables that are dipped in a chickpea flour batter and then fried and served with chutney or other dip sauces. We use white cabbage, carrot, zucchini and spinach in our pakora and share the recipe both for a crispy pan-fried version and one that is baked.
30 minutes
Makes 12 pakora
30 minutes
Makes 12 pakora
This recipe started with 5 kg / 10 lb of grated cabbage taking up a whole lot of space in our fridge. I had rescued the cabbage from being tossed away after a test cooking project I was involved in. My idea was that Luise could make sauerkraut from it (she is the kraut-master in the family). But even after Luise made two massive jars of krauts, we had lots of cabbage left and every time I opened the fridge, that cabbage stared down at me. Until last weekend when Luise and the kids left for Denmark and I had a sudden pakora craving and realized that this was the perfect opportunity to use up some of that cabbage.

If you haven't tried pakora before, it is an Indian deep-fried snack that can be made in numerous varieties, but chickpea (gram) flour and spices are usually the base of the batter. It is brilliant in its simplicity and if you go light in the spices, it's usually popular with kids as well.

You normally mix water with the chickpea flour to make the batter, but since I used cabbage, carrot and zucchini, which all release a lot of liquid when grated, I used that liquid and just a little bit of water. My theory is that by getting as much liquid out of the vegetables you get a crispier end result. And it makes more sense to use their own liquid rather than first draining the liquid from the grated vegetables and then adding water.

I have tried two different cooking versions here, one fried in oil and one baked in the oven. You can see both versions in the photo below. The fried version (with flatter surface) is definitly crispier when eaten hot, but the baked version (with black nigella seeds on top) is not that far behind. Luise prefers the baked because it's healthier and I lean towards the fried because it's crispier and crunchier.

I did a little insta query on what sauce to dunk them in and since the results were split, I went for three different sauces :) A fresh mint and coriander sauce, a tangy rhubarb chutney and a creamy yogurt sauce. Obviously you don't have to make them all. 
Happy cooking!
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