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  • Writer's pictureMarissa Bialecki

Pakoras | Capital Chefs: Kaz Kazmi of Merzi (Part 2)

It’s easy to be intimidated by the prospect of cooking Indian food. Will it turn out right? Do I have the right spices? Am I better off ordering from a restaurant in town that actually knows what they’re doing? But take my word for it: making Indian food, really good Indian food, doesn’t have to be that hard. Save your pennies on having someone else make you chicken tikka masala; you can do this.


After the jump you’ll find Kaz Kazmi’s recipe for pakoras, a traditional Indian fried vegetable fritter. They’re flavorful and spicy and taste so good that before you know it the entire batch you made will be gone.


Kaz Kazmi’s Merzi Pakora Recipe

Ingredients: 1 Cup Gram Flour (or chickpea flour or garbanzo flour) 1 tsp salt 1/2 tsp baking powder 2 tsp Paprika 2 tsp Cumin 1/2 tsp pepper 1 tsp cilantro 1/4 cup warm water 1 tsp lemon juice 1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil Assorted vegetables like onions, cauliflower, boiled potatoes, etc.


Instructions: 1. Chop all vegetables into bite-sized pieces and set aside. 2. Mix all dry ingredients together and then add in the warm water and lemon juice until the mixture turns into a smooth paste. 3. Roll the vegetables in the paste so they have a light coating. Pour the oil into a skillet so that it covers the bottom of the pan and heat thoroughly. Pan-fry the vegetables for 4 to 5 minutes until the batter turns a golden color. Serve with the cold chutney below.


Merzi Pakora Chutney

Ingredients: 1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro 1/2 tsp chopped green Thai chilies 1/4 tsp red chili powder 1 tbsp lemon juice 1/4 tsp sugar Salt & pepper to taste 1/2 cup plain yogurt


Instructions: 1. Mix all ingredients into the 1/2 cup of plain yogurt. Stir and refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.

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