When we were kids, my sisters and I called these pakoras “Gurudware vali bread”, which basically means bread from the Gurudwara. My parents used to be very involved in a local Gurudwara and almost every weekend there would be three days of prayer they participated in. On those weekends we’d often sleep at the Gurudwara and on Sunday morning before the cooking for the day began, one of the Aunties would whip up a batch of these delicious bread fritters, aka bread pakoras.
My mom also makes these a lot when she can’t really think of anything to make for a quick snack or light lunch with chai. Over the years they’ve become one of my last minute dinner staples too! If I serve them for dinner I’ll usually cut up some fresh veggies to go along side them, and then we’ll spread out a blanket on the living room floor and eat picnic style from one plate. I love sharing favourites from my childhood with my kids, and I think this is a recipe your family will enjoy too, after all; fried bread + besan (chickpea flour) = love on a plate. That’s a little food math for you my friends!
Bread Pakora Recipe:Ingredients:
6-8 slices of bread cut in half (I use plain brown bread)
2 cups besan/chickpea flour
1 teaspoon dhegi mirch/paprika (you can also use red chilli powder if you like)
1/2 teaspoon anardana/pomegranate seed powder
Salt to taste
3/4 cup to 1 cup water for mixing batter
Oil for frying
Directions:Mix all your dry ingredients together. Make sure there are no large lumps in your chickpea flour and add water slowly to make a batter thin enough to move the bread slices around easily, but thick enough to coat the entire slice. Once you are happy with the consistency of your batter (you can always add more water or chickpea flour if needed), heat up your oil for frying. The oil is ready when you drop a little batter into it and it floats right to the top instead of sinking. This is usually between 385 – 425 Farenheit depending on whether you are using new or re-used cooking oil.
Now you can begin dipping the bread on both sides and carefully sliding it into the oil. I’m using my hand to make the drop here, but if you are not comfortable with that use a slotted spoon. Remember, the oil is very hot at this point, only do what you are comfortable with.
I usually fry the first side for about a minute and a half and the second side for a minute, but that depends on the oil temperature, and how crispy you like your bread pakora. That’s something you’ll have to experiment with. Once you’ve fried the bread pakoras, take them out of the oil and let them sit on a paper towel for a few minutes to soak up some of the excess oil. Serve them warm with a green chutney, or ketchup (my favourite), and of course, chai is always welcome at the pakora party!