My friend Aimee, who blogs at Goa Getter, lives in Hyderabad, India and I am incredibly jealous of her food adventures. Late one night (thanks to a 10 1/2 hr time difference) we were talking about food – go figure. She was telling me all about the different delicious-already-made food she could find by just going outside and around in her neighborhood. The next day I made a 5 course Indian meal because I couldn’t get it out of my head.
I didn’t always like Indian food. In fact I’m still intimidated by a lot of curries and other dishes, but I love the variety and use of fresh spices and vegetables. If I ever have to become vegetarian, I’m moving to India. To quell my longing for spicy dishes, and turn around a tasty meal in a short time I created this vegetarian pakora curry. Pakoras are essentially a mix between a dumpling and a breading. They are fried and found throughout South Asia and take on different fillings and serving styles depending on the country.
The “dough” or batter used on the pakora varies but I opted for a chickpea flour to keep this gluten free. It’s also dairy-free and nut-free so this dish is a great option for those with allergies. Instead of making my own curry sauce which is time consuming, I used Saffron Road’s Thai Red Curry Simmer Sauce. If you like things hot, this is the sauce for you. It can be “cooled down” some by mixing in yogurt or cream. No matter what spice level you like I know you’ll love this dish. Right after I share this recipe, I’ve got a special giveaway from Saffron Road for one lucky reader – someone will win one each of the new simmer sauces, Saffron Road’s super popular crunchy chickpeas, and a new lunchbox to take your leftovers to work the next day (if you’ve got any left!) Be sure to keep reading to enter!
- 3/4 cup chopped zucchini
- 3/4 cup chopped carrots
- 3/4 cup chopped cauliflower
- 1/2 cup chopped onions
- handful Italian parsley
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp fresh ginger
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 2 cloves crushed garlic
- 2-3 cups chickpea flour
- warm water
- vegetable oil for frying
- 1 package Saffron Road Thai Red Curry Simmer Sauce
- Greek yogurt or cream (optional)
- Peel and chop all vegetables (zucchini, carrots, cauliflower, and onions) and add to a large mixing bowl.
- Chop flatleaf Italian parsley roughly and mix with the vegetables.
- Toss vegetables with salt, ginger, cumin, turmeric, and garlic.
- In a separate bowl, add 2-3 cups of chickpea flour. If you want a looser pakora add more water and less flour to make a thinner batter. For firmer pakora add less water and more flour. You will need to have enough batter to hold the fritters together when frying.
- In a large pot heat enough vegetable oil to cover pakora at least 1/2 way (1-2" deep of oil).
- When the oil is hot enough - a drop of batter placed in the fryer sizzles - reduce heat to medium and drop dough by the tablespoonful into the oil. Do not overcrowd the pan!
- Fry pakora until golden brown on all sides, flip if needed. Remove and drain in a paper towel.
- Repeat until the dough has been used up.
- In a large pan, add the contents of the Thai Red Curry Simmer Sauce. You can additionally add Greek yogurt or heavy cream to cool down the sauce. You could also serve the yogurt on the side so that individuals can add the amount they desire.
- When the simmer sauce begins to bubble, add the pakora. I had a few left over but this will really depend on the size you make.
- Cook just long enough to coat the pakora in the sauce.
- Serve immediately hot.
- They can be eaten on top of rice, or scooped up with naan.
Ready to try this simmer sauce? Enter the giveaway! Closes midnight on July 24th.