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Pakode Wali Kadhi
- Duration: 30 minutes
- Serves: 4 people
Spice Level: Medium
This is a dish that needs to be slow-cooked on medium to low flame to get the typical creamy and even texture. The other important rule is to keep stirring the kadhi gently through the entire cooking process, hence keeping it from curdling.
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In the olden days, fresh vegetables were hard to come by in the desert state of Rajasthan. So the people came up with kadhi—a cooling gravy dish made of besan and curd—flavoured with spices such as dhaniya (coriander) powder and methidana (fenugreek seeds). The kadhi made in this region is a lighter version of the other varieties cooked in Gujarat and UP and is usually eaten hot to counter the simmering heat of the desert region.
- Curd drink (Lassi), whisked with water (300 ml)
- Gram flour (Besan) (3 tbsp)
- MTR Haldi Turmeric Powder (1 tsp)
- Sabut dhaniya (coriander seeds) (1 tsp)
- Fenugreek seeds (Methidana) (½ tsp)
- Whole red chillies(Sabut lal mirch ) (2)
- Ghee (for tempering) (2 tsp)
- Salt (to taste)
- Gram flour (Besan) (½ cup)
- Onion, finely chopped (1)
- Green chilli (Hari mirch), finely chopped (1)
- MTR Lal Mirch Chilli Powder (½ tsp)
- Oil (for deep-frying)
- Pour the lassi into a big bowl and slowly add the besan, salt, and haldi to it, blending in the powders gently to avoid a lumpy mix.
- Now churn the mixture using a hand-held churner so that the mixture is smooth and uniform.
- Heat the ghee in a kadhai and add the methidana. When it begins to darken, add the sabut dhaniya and sabut lal mirch. Sauté for a few seconds till they give off an aroma.
- Reduce the flame and pour the besan-curd mixture, stirring constantly. Turn up the flame for a bit and continue stirring in a circular direction till the kadhi comes to a boil. If you stop stirring, the mixture will curdle.
- Once it comes to a boil, lower the flame and let it simmer till it thickens, stirring occasionally.
- While the kadhi is thickening, prepare the pakodas.
- In a bowl, make a thick batter of besan with some water. To check if the batter is ready, drop a small bit of batter in a glass of water. The batter must float up whole, not disintegrate and fall to the bottom of the glass.
- Add chopped onions, hari mirch, and lal mirch powder and season. Mix well.
- Heat oil in a pan and drop a spoonful of this batter into it. Deep-fry the dumplings, turning them gently so they turn golden on all sides.
- The authentic kadhi takes about an hour to thicken adequately on a very low wood or charcoal flame, but you may hasten the process by increasing the flame from time to time, taking care to keep stirring.
- Add the pakodas when you reach the desired consistency—remember that the kadhi will thicken further when cooled—and cover the preparation with a lid for 5-10 minutes to let the pakodas soak in the flavours and become soft.
- You may soak the ready pakodas in water and gently squeeze out the extra water before adding to the kadhi to ensure softness. In this case, do not cover the kadhi for more than a minute or so after adding the pakodas.
- Serve hot with rice or rotis and roasted papad.
In Your Kitchen
You may avoid adding haldi, while sweetening your kadhi with a bit of gud or sugar just the way it is prepared in Gujarat, or temper it with rai (black mustard seeds) and kadipatta (curry leaves) to give it an Andhra flavour.