Lakshmi’s Out of this World Veggie Pakoras

Happy International Women’s Day! 🌹🌷

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This is the perfect recipe to share on International Women’s Day as I made these delicious pakoras with my girlfriends Lakshmi and Basanthi. Pakoras are deep fried Indian fritters made with chickpea flour and vegetables. Some of the best pakoras I’ve had are made by my friend Lakshmi. She makes the most delicious pakoras I have ever tasted. Any time Lakshmi is invited to a dinner gathering or a party, she brings her signature appetizer – her veggie pakoras. Lakshmi’s pakoras are in a league of their own – full of a wide variety of vegetables, crunchy, with a kick of green chili spiciness, they are so good that you could never have just two or three. It’s the variety of vegetables that makes her pakoras taste so good. The veggies add so many flavors that there are no spices in these pakoras, just salt and green chilies for a little heat.

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I’ve asked Lakshmi many times for her recipe and she has shared it many times too but this is the type of recipe one has to watch the cook making it to understand what is involved. The opportunity presented itself last week when our mutual friend Basanthi was having a dinner meeting at her home and Lakshmi offered to make her signature veggie pakoras for the evening. I was invited to watch, take pictures and take a bunch of pakoras home too 😋👏.

With flavorful veggies such as onions, broccoli, Swiss chard, four different types of bell peppers, and green beans, these pakoras take a bit of work to cut all the vegetables, mix them in the flour and then fry them in batches, but it is so worth it!  It’s hard to make a small batch of these pakoras because it has so many vegetables; this the type of recipe that is best made when you have a couple of families over, or make them with a friend or two and it becomes a fun cooking time.

Lakshmi’s Out of this World Veggie Pakoras
makes a large quantity. Feel free to cut the recipe down by 1/3 for one generous batch of pakoras for a family of 4-5

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups cut green beans
  • 1/2 red bell pepper
  • 1/2 yellow bell pepper
  • 1/2 orange bell pepper
  • 1/2 green bell pepper
  • 3 onions
  • 1 bunch Swiss Chard about 3-4 cups
  • 2 cups broccoli florets
  • 2 jalapenos very finely chopped or green chilies to your liking. Remove seeds if you want the pakoras mild
  • 9 cups chickpea flour – for 3 batches of pakoras
  • 6 cups rice flour – for 3 batches of pakoras
  • Salt to taste about 2 tsp for each batch

Cook’s Notes:  This quantitly of vegetables makes 3 batches of pakoras. In each batch use 3 cups chickpea flour,  2 cups rice flour and 4 generous cups of mixed cut vegetables.

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Directions:

  • Cut the vegetables into 2 1/2 – 3 inch long medium sized pieces. Here are a few photos of how the veggies should be cut.

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  • Mix all the cut vegetables along with the chilies.

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  • In another bowl mix 2 cups rice flour, 3 cups chickpea flour and 2 tsp salt.

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  • Next mix 4 cups of cut vegetables with the flour mixture.

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  • Lakshmi said to squeeze the veggies as you mix to release their juices in the flour. Add 1/2 – 1 cup water little at a time as little as possible, as you mix all the ingredients. Keep “kneading” the dough until a sticky but dry mixture is formed like in the photos below. The veggies will continue release their moisture as you mix them with the flour.

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  • Heat oil and get ready to fry the pakoras  (please be careful when frying).  Drop spoonfuls of batter in oil making sure not to drop big clumps. Don’t make the pakoras too big or the insides of the pakoras will be under-cooked while the outside becomes crunchy.

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  • Deep fry until brown in color, gently moving the pakoras around in the oil so they brown evenly, about 5-7 minutes.

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  • Once the pakoras are brown and cooked take them out of the oil and place them on a newspaper or paper towel to drain any excess oil.

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  • Repeat with veggie batter until all the pakoras are fried.

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  • Mix the remainder of the veggies and flour in two more batches and fry until all the pakoras are done.
  • Once all the pakoras are cooked serve them warm or at room temperature with a cup of tea.

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A heartfelt thanks to my dear friends Chef Teacher Lakshmi and Sous-Chef Basanthi 😘❤️ for taking the time to show me how to make these delectable veggie pakoras 😋.

Lemons and freesias for my friends 🤗💐🍋.

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These are out of this world delicious pakoras that taste amazing when shared with friends and family 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦👩‍👩‍👧‍👧👨‍👨‍👧‍👧.  On a cold winter afternoon, a rainy evening, or a balmy summer day – there is something about pakoras that makes one feel content and happy 😊😋.

Pakoras Are All You Need
from indiatoday.in

 It doesn’t matter if it’s a drizzle or pouring rain, that single drop of water splashing on dry ground just makes our hearts scream out for a large plate of pakoras. Pakoras are all you need to enjoy the monsoon season.

This weather just adds to the romance of pakora and chai, and there aren’t many who can resist these crunchy fritters. 

Yes, pakoras are that rooted in our sense and palate.
Take any plate of pakora, and you’ll understand that it isn’t just another food item. It’s a centre piece for everything from conversations to celebrations. Pakoras are all you need.”

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15 thoughts on “Lakshmi’s Out of this World Veggie Pakoras”

  1. Very adorable presentation, that made my tongue watery even seeing the pictures! I would love to visit with Lakshmi when I visit CA next.
    Once, I was in Mumbai near Haji Ali shore apartment sitting in the balcony with Raji, my wife, on a rainy day, waves of Arabian Sea breaking the rocky shores, late Jai, Raji’s sister made delicious pakoras to complement the beauty of the season. My happy illusory memories to share with you, Dolly, hard to repeat!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Dad I’m happy to know you enjoyed this post and it brought back fond memories of your stay with Mom in Mumbai with Jai Aunty and Chary Uncle. I too remember that apartment on Haji Ali overlooking the Arabian Sea. What a beautiful place that was, we used to love visiting them when we were young. We always got treated to the most amazing delicacies and delicious foods prepared by Jai Aunty. I’ll ask Lakshmi to make these pakoras when you visit!

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      1. Dolly,
        Great hearing from you. Yes, the year has nearly gone‎ past rather quickly. Geetha and Sampath are fine. They never tire of telling every one what a great time they had in the USA, in general, and in Los Gatos, in particular.

        About pakoras, the apartment we stayed in at the time, was on the 5th floor. It had 3 balconies, one, facing/ overlooking the Haji Ali masjid and the sea, the second, just overlooking the winning post of the Mahalakshmi race-course, and the third, facing the Willingdon
        golf course.

        The Monsoon season, in Mumbai, is always interesting. So, when it rains heavily, nothing better to do than to sit in the balcony, swelling hot tea and eating well-made pakoras. No wonder your Dad feels nostalgic about those days.

        Regards to Hitesh and the girls.
        Love to all,
        Uncle Chary

        Like

  2. Kalpana you have made the whole process of making the pakoras look very professional! Very nice pictures of the process! Never knew my simple vessels could look good!

    Yes Lakshmi’s pakoras are out of this world! And I shamelessly asked her to come and make it. Everyone loved it! Thanks for recording the process! Thanks Lakshmi for the generous supply of pakoras!

    Liked by 1 person

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