Like murukku, ribbon pakoda and other deep fried bakshanams (snacks), pakoda, bhajji and bonda are also equally famous coffee time snacks in Tamil Nadu. The base for all these three snacks is the same. It starts with chickpea flour (besan, kadalai maavu), rice flour, chili powder, hing and salt. The difference lies only in the consistency of the batter and the vegetables/stuffing going inside the batter.

The batter for pakoda (especially the Tamilian style of preparation) is quite stiff and hence once it's deep fried it's crispier than the North Indian style pakoras. The usual pakodas are onion pakoda, pudina (mint) pakoda and cashew pakoda. Today I'm going to share my grandmother's recipe for spring onion pakoda. It's yet another signature dish of hers.

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Spring Onion Pakoda


Recipe: Spring Onion Pakoda
Prep and Cooking Time: 30 mins
Recipe Level: Basic/Beginner
Makes: 12-16 pieces of pakoda
Shelf Life: Tastes good when served hot
Recipe Source: My grandmother
Recipe/Post by: Madhuram

Ingredients:
1 teaspoon Ghee
1/4 teaspoon Baking Soda
1 bunch Spring Onions (scallions), finely chopped (measures about 2 cups)
3/4 cup Chickpea Flour/Besan
2 tablespoons cups Rice Flour
1-2 teaspoons Red Chili Powder (or as per taste)
1/2 teaspoon Salt (or as required)
A pinch Asafoetida Powder/Hing
Water to sprinkle
Oil for frying

Special Utensils:
Deep Frying Pan
Slotted Ladle (to drain the oil while removing the pakodas)

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Preparation:
For the dough:
  1. Take a large bowl; add ghee and baking soda and rub it nicely with the tip of your fingers until it's nice and foamy.
  2. To this add the chopped spring onions and salt; mix everything together with your fingers and set aside for at least 5 minutes (and maximum 10 minutes) so that the salt will enable some water secretion.
  3. After 5 minutes add the chickpea flour, rice flour, chili powder, hing and a teaspoon of hot oil and mix it thoroughly. The dough will be sticky. Have a small bowl filled with water nearby, so that you can dip your fingers in the water and mix the dough easily. Do not pour down the water in the dough. The water from the salt and a little sprinkle while mixing the dough is all it needs if you want very crispy (like store bought) pakodas.

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For deep frying:
  1. Heat oil for frying in a deep and heavy bottomed pan (Kadai) even before preparing the dough.
  2. Check if the oil is hot enough by dropping a small piece of the dough in the oil and it should float atop almost immediately. If the oil is in high heat reduce it to medium. When frying at high heat the snack will become red very quickly but the inside will be raw. If the heat is very low, the pakodas will not be crispy and will also absorb a lot of oil. So the temperature of the oil is very important for deep frying snacks.
  3. Pinch about 1/2 to 1 tablespoon of dough and drop it in the hot oil. Depending on the size of the pan, you can fry a couple of pakodas in one batch. Mine was a medium size pan, so I was able to fry 5-6 at the same time.
  4. Fry it until it's golden brown and the sizzling sound of the oils stops.
  5. Remove the pakodas from the pan using a slotted ladle; drain the excess oil by pressing it lightly against the kadai.
  6. Transfer the pakodas to sheets of paper towel to remove some more oil. Serve immediately with chutney or ketchup.

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Special Notes/Tips:
  • The spring onions we get in US/Canada is very big then what I have seen in India, so 1 bunch was enough for me.
  • The same recipe can be used to prepare the regular onion pakodas. Instead of slicing the onions with a knife, I usually use a mandolin to get very thin slices of onion, so when salt is added it secretes enough water to hold the flour together and the pakodas come out very crisp. No need to add extra water at all.


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16 comments

  1. Nags // 28 July 2009 at 11:43  

    lovely pics, lovely dish :)

  2. Parita // 28 July 2009 at 11:46  

    Spring onion pakodas sounds too good then regular onion pakodas! love the first click!

  3. Prathibha // 28 July 2009 at 14:27  

    hmm Ncie idea of making spring onion pakodas...I think these will be quite flavorful..

  4. Trupti // 28 July 2009 at 18:16  

    spring onion pakoda sounds delicious..lovely photos

    Trupti
    Fashion Deals For Less
    Recipe Center

  5. Hari Chandana // 28 July 2009 at 19:20  

    pakoda looks crispy and yummyy.. .wonderful clicks!!

  6. Kalyani // 28 July 2009 at 20:26  

    wow i love the pictures & the pakoda looks so delicious ..................

  7. Vani // 28 July 2009 at 21:23  

    Loved the pictures! Pakodas look great!

  8. Medhaa // 28 July 2009 at 21:29  

    Now I know how to make it crispier, We usually double fry it to get them crispier. Will try it this way now.

  9. Poornima Nair // 29 July 2009 at 01:12  

    Spring onion is such a great alternative...the pictures are great, looks yumm.

  10. Pavithra Kodical // 29 July 2009 at 03:40  

    Pictures are making me drool here.never thought of making spring onion pakora. Will try this.

  11. Nithya Praveen // 30 July 2009 at 02:09  

    Never thought of making spring onion pakodas...great idea.Lovely pics too.

  12. Alka // 30 July 2009 at 12:55  

    Love the flavor of spring onions, love the deep fried snacks, love the pakoras, so u can easily imagine my situation sitting here and drooling at these lovely bhajjis, knowing very well that i can neither sniff the wonderful aroma nor taste the delicious snack...a not so good feeling i must say..lol

  13. Cynthia // 31 July 2009 at 09:48  

    This is such a great idea!

  14. meeso // 2 August 2009 at 00:12  

    Grrrr, my stomach is growling like crazy! Looks SOOO good!

  15. Divya Vikram // 3 August 2009 at 10:03  

    That is an innovative snack!

  16. Raaga // 19 July 2011 at 15:02  

    Madhuram: Please check this: http://shoumya.blogspot.com/2010/01/brocolli-onion-pakoda.html

    I have written to the author, a friend of mine, to not use photos without permission and without any credit, but you might want to take it up yourself.

    Thanks