Pakoras of Ajwain Leaves and Small Shrimps
When it is raining and you have to cook up something quickly for a crowd, Pakoras are a no-brainer. Thanks to the Mumbai Monsoons and a group of kind friends, I have been eating Pakoras almost every other day for sometime now. Even though I don’t make them everyday at home, the ladies tea-parties are reason enough to gorge on different kinds of pakoras with a hot cup of tea. Today, on the national #ChaiPakodaDay (a food concept by Rushina Munshaw Ghildiyal), I take pleasure to make this day special in my own way. These pakoras are really easy to make. I always keep a good stock of deveined small shrimps in the freezer. Most of it goes in preparing delicious Bengali meals for my family. Some of it goes in stir-fried Asian dishes. Still, I often have enough as standby.
The succulent Ajwain leaves that I have used here are not obtained from the plant of Carom seeds or Ajwain. These edible leaves belong to some other species and smell exactly like Ajwain or Carom seeds. A real carom-seed plant is different and has very delicate, thin leaves. I started cooking with the succulent Ajwain leaves recently (the leaves are as shown in the pictures). I really love the pleasant, spicy aroma of these leaves. Having a plant in the balcony really helps, as I have access to these fresh leaves all the time.
Delicious Pakoras for Chai Pakora Day!
Instead of water, I used whey that was the by-product of my homemade paneer. If you don’t have whey, use plain water. These pakoras are great on their own, but these taste even better with tamarind chutney!
If you give these pakoras a try, then do tag me on Instagram and Facebook. Happy monsoon time!
#ChaiPakodaDay Special: Pakoras of Ajwain Leaves and Small Shrimps
- Chickpea flour (Besan): 2 cups
- Cornflour: 1 cup
- Salt: 1 tsp
- Turmeric powder: ¼ tsp
- Whey or plain water: just enough to make a thick batter
- Finely chopped onions: 1 cup
- Finely chopped green chillies: 3
- Ajwain or Carom seeds: ½ tsp
- Ajwain leaves (chopped): 20
- Lightly fried, deveined, small-sized shrimps (previously marinated in salt and turmeric powder): 2 cups
- Roasted Bengal Gram (Chana Dal): 1.5 tbsp
- Chaat masala: for garnish
- Oil for deep-frying
- Tamarind chutney to serve
- Make a batter of the chickpea flour, cornflour, salt and turmeric powder. Add the whey or water only sufficient enough to make a thick batter.
- Add the rest of the ingredients and mix with the batter. If the batter feels too thick, add little whey/water. Let it rest for 5 min. Mix it again with hand or a spatula.
- Deep-fry small portions of this batter on a medium flame. Remove on an absorbent paper when golden-brown on each side.
- Sprinkle Chaat Masala over the hot pakoras and serve immediately with tamarind chutney.
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