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  • Seasonal local food recipe No.254 – Hugh’s cauliflower pakoras with tamarind raita

    Posted on December 7th, 2014 Janet No comments

    My husband made these delicious morsels for tea last night, he used pomegranate molasses instead of tamarind paste in the raita and it was delicious. They’re from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage Veg Every Day.

    Serves 6-8cauliflower-camelcsa-160312

    Preparation time: 30 mins
    Cooking time: 20 mins

    1 medium cauliflower (about 800g), trimmed
    sunflower oil, for frying
    For the batter:
    150g gram (chickpea) flour
    1/2 tsp baking powder
    2 tsps ground cumin
    2 tsps ground coriander
    1/2 tsp ground turmeric
    a good shake of cayenne pepper
    1/2 tsp fine sea salt

    For the tamarind raita
    6 heaped tbs plain yoghurt
    A large handful coriander, chopped
    2 tsps tamarind paste or mango chutney
    sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

    For the raita, mix all the ingredients together, seasoning with salt and pepper to taste.  Set aside.
    Cut the cauliflower into small florets, no more that 2 cm across in any direction, discarding nearly all the stalk.
    For the batter, put the gram flour, baking powder, ground spices and salt into a large bowl.  Whisk to combine and get rid of any lumps.  Slowly whisk in 175 ml cold water, which should give you a smooth batter with a similar consistency to double cream.  Add a little more water if necessary – different brands of gram flour will vary in how much they absorb.

    Add the cauliflower florets to the batter and turn them, making sure they are all thoroughly coated.  Heat about 1 cm of oil in a heavy-based pan over a medium heat.  When the oil is hot enough to turn a cube of white bread light golden in 30-40 seconds, start cooking the pakoras, a few at a time so you don’t crowd the pan.

    Place spoonfuls of battered cauliflower – just a few florets per spoonful – into the hot oil.  Cook for about 2 minutes, until crisp and golden brown on the base, then turn over and cook for another minute or two.  drain the pakoras on kitchen paper, then serve piping hot with the raita for dipping.

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