Recipe: Jhingri Pakora
This recipe for Jhingri Pakora is excerpted from Ajanta: Regional Feasts of India. The recipe is reprinted with permission from cookbook author and Berkeley, California restaurateur Lachu Moorjani.
Jhingri Pakora (Shrimp Fritters)
1/2 cup chickpea flour
1/2 cup rice flour
1 cip large uncooked shrimp, peeled and deveined, cut in 1/2-inch pieces
1 teaspoon white poppy seeds
1 teaspoon ajwain seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon chili flakes
1/4 cup loosely packed chopped cilantro
Oil for deep-frying
Mix all the ingredients except oil and add just enough water to make a thick paste.
Heat the oil in a wok to about 300 to 325 degrees. Using a large spoon, drop 5 to 6 large balls of the paste, about 1 to 2 inches in diameter, into the oil and deep-fry to golden brown over medium heat. This may take 6 to 8 minutes for each batch. Do nut fry too many balls at one time. Oil may become cold and the balls may soak up too much oil. Remove fried balls and place on paper towels to drain. Repeat until the entire mixture is finished.
Serve with Mint Cilantro Chutney.
Mint Cilantro Chutney
2 to 3 tablespoons tamarind concentrate
(see step one below for instructions)
1 large tomato, coarsely chopped
1/2 medium onion, coarsely chopped
2 cups loosely packed cilantro (about 1 bunch), thick stems removed
1/2 cup mint leaves (about 1/2 bunch)
1 green serrano chile pepper, about 3 inches long, chopped (optional)
1/2 teaspoon salt
Make the tamarind concentrate by soaking a large lemon-size ball of tamarind in a small bowl for 1 hour in enough water to cover. Mash with fingers to dissolve. Strain. The final concentrate should be the consistency of thick buttermilk.
Place all ingredients together in a blender. The blender will work better if moist ingredients (tamarind concentrate, tomato and onion) are pureed first. Taste and adjust for salt and tamarind.