If you’re a fan of Indian snacks, then you’re in for a treat! Today, we’ll take you on a flavorful journey with a classic recipe that’s sure to tantalize your taste buds – Spicy Paneer Pakoda Recipe. These crispy, spicy, and utterly delicious paneer fritters are the perfect snack for any occasion. Whether it’s a rainy day or a special gathering with friends and family, this home-style recipe is a crowd-pleaser that will leave everyone asking for more.
For the Paneer Marinade:
- 250 grams of fresh paneer (cottage cheese), cut into cubes
- 1 cup thick yogurt
- 1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- Salt to taste
For the Batter:
- 1 cup chickpea flour (besan)
- 2 tablespoons rice flour
- 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder
- A pinch of asafoetida (hing)
- Salt to taste
- Water (as needed)
- Vegetable oil
- Chaat masala
- Fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped
1. Marinating the Paneer:
- In a mixing bowl, combine the thick yogurt, ginger-garlic paste, red chili powder, turmeric powder, garam masala, and salt.
- Add the paneer cubes to this marinade and gently coat them. Let it marinate for at least 30 minutes. This allows the flavors to seep into the paneer, making it even more delicious.
2. Preparing the Batter:
- In a separate bowl, combine chickpea flour, rice flour, red chili powder, asafoetida, and salt.
- Gradually add water to the dry mixture, stirring continuously until you achieve a smooth, lump-free batter. The batter should have a thick consistency that coats the back of a spoon.
3. Frying the Paneer Pakodas:
- Heat vegetable oil in a deep frying pan or kadai over medium-high heat.
- Once the oil is hot, take each marinated paneer cube and dip it into the prepared batter, ensuring it is evenly coated.
- Carefully place the coated paneer cubes into the hot oil, one by one.
- Fry the paneer pakodas in batches, making sure not to overcrowd the pan. This ensures they cook evenly and stay crispy.
- Fry until the pakodas turn golden brown and crispy, which should take about 3-4 minutes per batch.
- Use a slotted spoon to remove the fried paneer pakodas from the oil and place them on a plate lined with paper towels to remove excess oil.
4. Serving the Spicy Paneer Pakodas:
- Sprinkle chaat masala and finely chopped fresh coriander leaves over the hot paneer pakodas for added flavor and freshness.
- Serve the paneer pakodas hot with mint chutney, tamarind chutney, or ketchup as accompaniments.
Tips and Variations
- You can add a bit of lemon juice to the marinade for a tangy twist.
- For an extra kick of spice, consider adding finely chopped green chilies to the batter.
- If you prefer a gluten-free version, substitute rice flour with cornstarch.
- To make the pakodas even more tempting, you can stuff the paneer cubes with a mixture of chopped nuts and raisins before coating them with batter.
Spicy Paneer Pakoda is a timeless Indian snack that combines the richness of paneer with the irresistible crunch of chickpea flour batter. It’s a dish that’s not just easy to prepare at home but also customizable to suit your taste preferences. So, the next time you crave a spicy, crispy snack, don’t hesitate to whip up a batch of these delectable paneer pakodas. Enjoy the flavors of India in the comfort of your own kitchen!