When I was a kid, rainy weather called for hot, spicy, vegetable fritters called pakoras. Pakoras are vegetables like onions, potatoes, cauliflowers, egg plants or chilies deep fried in gram flour batter. A little similar to onion rings, except spicier. Nothing warms you on a rainy day like pakoras with some hot tea. The recent rainy weather in Phoenix reminded me of pakoras. I tried making bread pakoras. Bread pakoras are made using bread filled with paneer (cottage cheese) along with some spicy chutney. They can be eaten as snacks or can also be used for a filling school lunch. Store bought paneer is available in many brands like Nanak, Shamiana, Gopi etc and available in Indian groceries in the valley. Check out the link http://www.examiner.com/article/mint-and-cilantro-summer-recipe-for-cool... for recipe for cilantro-mint chutney.
- 4 slices of bread (white or wheat)
- 2 slices of paneer (2” slices, store bought or fresh)
- 2 tsp cilantro-mint chutney
- 4 tbsp gram flour (besan)
- 1 tsp rock salt (or table salt)
- ½ tsp red chili powder
- 1 pinch baking soda
- 1 cup water
- 2 tbsp canola oil
Put 1 slice of paneer over a slice of bread. Smear 1 tsp cilantro-mint chutney over the paneer. Cover with the other bread slice to make a sandwich. Cut the sandwich diagonally. Repeat with the other two bread slices to get four half sandwiches. Add salt, chili powder and soda to the gram flour. Add water slowly to make a thick batter. Heat oil in a deep frying pan. When the oil is smoking hot, dunk one half sandwich in the batter and put in the hot oil. Turn over with a slotted spoon when one side is cooked (1 min). Remove and keep on paper towels to drain excess oil. Dip remaining sandwiches in the batter and fry in the oil. The bread pakoras are ready. Serve hot with some ketchup and a hot cup of tea or coffee.