Discover Secrets of Indian home food


Mum’s Pakoras



So what is the difference between a pakora and a bhaji? Allow me to explain, the terms are not interchangeable but are indeed nuanced. It can mean different things dependent on whether you are in North or South India.

Pakora is a Punjabi word, and refers to vegetables, meat or fish deep fried in a spicy batter. Bhajis can refer to deep fried vegetables as well as other vegetarian dishes.


  • 1 large potato
  • 1 large brown onion
  • 250g spinach
  • 1 medium egg
  • 3 heaped tablespoons of yoghurt
  • 1 heaped tablespoon of whole cumin
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 2-3 tsp minced chillies (to taste)
  • 1 heaped tablespoon chopped coriander
  • 100g Chickpea flour/Gram flour (besan)
  • vegetable oil for deep frying – eg Crisp n Dry
Prep Time:
5-10 minutes
Cooking Time:
7-10 minutes per batch
Cook’s Tip:

Sprinkle Chaat Masala on the cooked pakoras as a little extra seasoning, this will really elevate the flavour kiss – pucker up!

Serving Suggestion:

Serve with tamarind sauce, or minted yoghurt, or tomato ketchup, or cold beer or a cup of chai. You decide, pick and mix...


1. First we’ll prep the veggies. Peel the potato and finely slice, then cut into 2cm squared pieces, rinse and place in a bowl and cover with cold water.  Peel and finely slice the onion, half moon. To chop the spinach, roll clumps into a cigar shape, and slice to a 2cm thickness. You want an equal volume of each.

2. Mix the yoghurt, cumin, salt, garam masala, minced chillies, and chopped coriander in a mixing bowl. Taste and adjust as necessary. Then beat the egg and stir through.

3. Next add in the chickpea flour and mix to a fairly thick batter. It will thin out as the vegetables release their water; which the salt will draw out.

4. Now mix in the vegetables in equal quantities – you may need to do this in stages. Also note you can ‘feed’ your batter with additional batter ingredients as necessary – I always add more chillies and salt.

5. Time to fry. Do the ‘bread sizzle test’ to check the oil is to temperature. Take two spoons, one to scoop out the mixture (ensure you have an equal amount of all the veggies in each scoop), the other to help gently place into the hot oil. The batter should just about cover the veg, this will result in a lighter, tempura style pakora.

6. Be mindful not to overload the wok or fryer. Deep fry until cooked and golden. Turn over as required.

7. Remove from the oil and dry on kitchen paper. Serve Immediately.