Mixed vegetable pakoras
Elly Curshen marks Earth Day on 22 April by going back to basics with an adaptable recipe that works with a variety of leftover vegetables.
- Prepare15 mins
- Cook15 mins
- Total time30 mins
- 50g Cooks' Ingredients Gram Flour
- ½ tsp fine salt
- Pinch chilli powder (or to taste)
- ½ tsp garam masala
- ½ tsp ground coriander
- Small handful spinach, sliced
- 1 medium potato (to give 150g once peeled), grated and squeezed dry
- Small wedge red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 green chilli, according to taste, thinly sliced
- 1/2 x ½ x 25g pack coriander, roughly chopped
- 4 cm vegetable or sunflower oil, for deep frying
In a medium bowl, combine the gram flour, salt and spices. Stir in about 3 tbsp water, until a thick and rather dry batter forms. Add the spinach, potato and onion (or whatever vegetables you choose), the green chilli and chopped coriander. Mix well, as the vegetables will loosen the mixture, then add more water if it seems dry, 1 tsp at a time. Set aside.
In a large, heavy-bottomed pan or wok, bring the oil to a medium-high heat. Drop in a little batter. If it takes about 2 seconds to float and sizzle, the oil is ready for frying. If it floats up immediately, the oil is too hot, and if it sinks and doesn’t come back up, it’s too cold.
Using 2 large spoons, divide into 8 rough balls. Carefully place 4 balls into the oil. Frying only a few pakoras at a time helps maintain the temperature of the oil for even cooking. Gently flip the pakoras while frying, allowing about 6 minutes to become golden brown on all sides and piping hot throughout. Using a slotted spoon, remove the pakoras from the pan onto a rack to drain. Repeat with the remaining mixture. Serve with chutney and/or raita as a snack or side.
Sauté sliced mushrooms and some spinach (or spinach, watercress and rocket salad mix) in butter with garlic and a pinch each of chilli flakes and dried thyme, until wilted. Put into a ramekin and crack an egg on top. Drizzle with a little cream and grate over some parmesan. Season and bake until the egg white is set. Serve with toast fingers.
Pan fry whatever greens you have in olive oil (broccoli, shredded Savoy cabbage, chard and green beans all work well). Drizzle 1 tbsp each (per portion) of red wine or sherry vinegar and clear honey into the pan, and season with sea salt and chilli flakes or pul biber. Stir through sultanas and capers. Toss, then serve topped with toasted flaked almonds.
Combine a can of mixed beans with diced pepper, diced tomato, diced red or salad onion, chopped coriander, mint or parsley. Whisk together a dressing of 2 parts cold-pressed rapeseed oil to 1 part tomato purée and 1 part white wine vinegar. Add a pinch of sugar or clear honey to taste, plus smoked paprika, sea salt flakes and a dash of water to loosen, if needed. Serve as it is, or mix with salad leaves.
Typical values per serving when made using specific products in recipe