Thursday, October 1, 2015

Recipe of the month: Bread Pakoda

My in-laws were in town for about 3 weeks last month. They had a wonderful time with the kids while I caught a much needed break. We couldn't venture out as much as we would have liked to (courtesy the 'haze') save for another trip to Madame Tussaud's and a get together at a friend's place but it was a refreshing change nonetheless. On the bright side....one of the things you can do when you are stuck at home is cook up a storm so that is exactly what we did!

My MIL makes this bread pakoda quite frequently when she is entertaining guests, on festive occasions or during her customary new year parties. Usually when you hear of bread pakodas, you expect deep-fried batter coated bread filled with a potato or a mixed vegetable filling. But my MIL's version is far less cumbersome, less heavy and I daresay equally delicious. Trust me when I say that it totally satisfies your fried food cravings.

A few guidelines while making this dish - use either white or wholemeal bread (I'm not sure multigrain will work as well), make sure it is the salted variety and not the sweet kind, try to get the largest loaf available, preferably use bread that has been refrigerated at least a day in advance and use fresh oil for deep-frying. The consistency of the dipping mixture is important too but you will get a hang of that by experience. My MIL typically uses finely chopped onions, garlic, green chillies and fresh coriander to flavour the dipping mixture but you could add in some fresh ginger and/or curry leaves if you like. Since the dipping mixture has plenty of bright fresh flavours incorporated into it, you really don't need any accompaniment to these pakodas. Just pick up a hot crispy pakoda and begin munching!

My trusty Canon DSLR conked off just as I was gearing up to prepare this post. As a result, I was forced to use my Sony cybershot to take the photos (which made me very grumpy indeed). I really wanted to feature this snack on my blog and I wasn't sure if I would be making it in the near future (with my upcoming India trip and all) so I decided to compromise. Bleh.

So, the next time you feel like indulging in the pleasures of the deep-fried variety, why not consider these yummy bread pakodas? It can be prepared in a jiffy, is something different from your usual run-of-the-mill Indian snacks and tastes pretty darn good!

Bread Pakoda

Preparation time: 15 min
Cooking time: 15 min
Serves: 5-6
Recipe level: Very easy
Recipe Source: Atthe (MIL)

Ingredients:

10 slices of bread, white or wholemeal
1 cup chiroti rava (fine semolina)
2 tbsp rice flour
2 tbsp plain flour/maida
1 tbsp chickpea flour/besan
Salt to taste
2 medium red onions, finely chopped
1 pod garlic, finely minced, Optional
8-12 bird’s eye green chillies (depending on your spice level)
1 large bunch fresh coriander, finely chopped
Water as required (~2 cups)
Oil (sunflower or canola) for deep-frying the pakodas + 2 tbsp to be added to the dipping mixture

Method:

1. In a large bowl add the chiroti rava, rice flour, plain flour, chickpea flour & salt, Give the dry ingredients a mix

2. Finely chop the onions, green chillies, garlic & coriander leaves. I put everything in my chopper and gave it a good whizz (it saves time!). Mix it into the bowl along with the dry ingredients

3. Now add water little by little, mixing frequently until the dipping mixture reaches the consistency of thick milkshake or an idli batter-like consistency. On medium flame, heat oil in a kadai until it becomes hot (but not smoking). Add 2 tbsp of the hot oil to the dipping mixture and mix well.


4. Take the bread slices and cut one slice into 4 squares. Do the same for the rest. Keep in mind that you don’t need to trim the edges of the bread.


5. Dip each square into the dipping mixture to ensure that it is coated uniformly and immediately drop it in hot oil.


6. Deep-fry till golden brown. Flip it on both sides to ensure uniform browning. Drain on absorbent paper towels.


7. Serve hot as it is or along with sauce or chutney of your choice.  


Notes:
  • Use large-sized bread slices if available
  • Make sure the bread you use is the salted variety and not the sweet kind
  • Test fry one pakoda to check the seasonings and the level of crispiness. If you feel it needs to be more crisp, add more rice flour to the dipping mixture
  • Do not soak the bread slices in the dipping mixture. It just needs to be dipped once or twice until uniformly coated and then dunked into the hot oil immediately


Cheers,


4 comments:

  1. Beautiful pics even if it's the cyber shot! I'd make these all the time in winter for a quickie brkfst with fruit n even pack for sonny's box. Can't have oily stuff for health reasons these days- might do it again for visiting relatives in Dec! It's indeed a delicious snack!!

    Loved reading thru ur Singapore's list of must see places! Very well written. Shall use that as a guide next when we plan to go there.
    Cause of the haze, we cancelled our flight n hotel booking in Singapore n stayed on in Bali n never regretted it!! Bali is beautiful. Iam praying the last remaining green zone will remain untouched. Ur pics of Ulun Danu temple had captivated me! I loved that place, the mist on the mountains n the boat ride, the air was crisp n cold as the sun went down n we drove higher up- had great Balinese veggie dinner! Iam in love with Bali n their Agami Hinduism which spread from people of ancient Kalinga or orissa who taught them batik to silver filigree n gave them the Hindu faith.
    Have a wonderful time journeying home. I miss my Mysore so much!

    Regards,
    Manu.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you Manu. You are very kind :) Glad to hear you loved Bali. I love it too! Hope u get the chance to visit Singapore in the future.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Most definitely Megha!! Singapore n Malaysia is on our itinerary!! Though my husband's been couple of times to KL on work, I had put off holidaying in South East Asia in favour of places farther west.

    Your lucid style of writing can capture the imagination of travel bugs like me! Seriously, you should be writing and publishing too! You r so articulate and descriptive, its a pleasure to read ur blogs! Warms my literary heart!!

    Keep it going Megha! God bless your twin babies and your lovely family. You r one amazing girl and a super mom!!

    My best,
    Manu.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awww that is the nicest thing I've heard recently! Thank you. Please do get in touch with me if u decide to holiday in Singapore :)

      Delete

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