A rainy day afternoon deserves, no, demands a light and crispy pakora like this simple, comes-togethe- in-15-minutes snack. With a hot cup of coffee or masala chai. Accompanied by a great book. Or just the sound of thunder, wind, and the pitter patter of rain on the rooftop. Chores, work, worries...all can wait for another sunny day. Make yourself these, and just enjoy the storm while it lasts.
Chop onions into thin 2 inch slivers. Any bigger would make the pakoras unwieldy. Chop the chilies, mint and cilantro and curry leaves finely.
In a bowl, place the chopped ingredients. Top with the flours, and add salt, hing, chili powder, and ghee on top. Add the cashew pieces.
Mix gently with a fork initially. Sprinkle spoonfuls of water at a time, and with your fingertips, gently mix everything together into a coarse, not too wet mix. This dish does not take too much water. Adding too much water will make it dense instead of flaky, and soak in lots of oil while frying. The consistency should be neither like a dough nor a batter
While you do all this, pour the oil (roughly 2 inches depth) in a small frying pan and heat it to medium heat
When the oil is hot, drop small spoonfuls of the dough/batter/pakora mix gently into the oil
Move the pakoras every couple of minutes so that they cook evenly. They are done when the bubbles in the oil disappear
Take them out with a slotted wide spoon (we use what is called a jalli karandi in Tamizh - it has holes to drain the oil as you lift them out) and drain on a paper towl
Make sure you cook on medium heat slowly. If the heat is too low, it will take a long time to cook and become soggy and oily. Too high heat and the outside will turn brown too quickly, leaving the inside un-/undercooked.
While you make these, have your husband make the coffee or masala chai so they're both ready at the same time 🙂
Enjoy with a side of thunderstorm!
Replace cashews with peanuts
Add a handful of chopped spinach for some extra nutrition