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Baked Vegetable Pakoras

These vegetable pakoras make a delicious and quick snack. Chop up the vegetables, fold in the chickpea flour and spices, and bake. And then comes the hardest part—waiting. Serve these pakoras with ketchup or chutneys of your choice. They can also be served in tacos with slaw and chutney or baked into flat patties for sandwiches or burgers. (From Vegan Richa’s Everyday Kitchen copyright © 2017 by Richa Hingle. Used by permission Vegan Heritage Press.)
Course Appetizer, Easy, Side
Cuisine Dairy-free, Egg-free, Gluten-free Option, Healthy, Indian, Plant-based, Soy-free, Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings 15 pakoras
Author Richa Hingle of Vegan Richa

Ingredients

  • 1 heaping cup 110g 1-inch (3cm) cauliflower florets
  • 3/4 cup 90g finely chopped onion
  • 3/4 cup 75g 1-inch (3cm) broccoli florets
  • 1/3 cup 50g chopped carrots
  • 1/3 cup 50g chopped raw or cooked potato
  • 1 small green chile seeded if desired
  • 1 1/2-inch [1cm] knob fresh ginger, peeled
  • 1/4 cup 10g tightly packed chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon fresh mint leaves optional
  • 1/4 teaspoon carom seeds ajwain or toasted cumin seeds, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon to 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon chaat masala or amchur (dried mango powder) divided
  • 2 tablespoons 16g semolina flour (or brown or white rice flour to make gluten-free)
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2/3 cup 60g chickpea flour, or more
  • 2 teaspoons organic safflower or other neutral oil or more
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons water or more

Instructions

  1. Add the cauliflower, onion, broccoli, carrots, potato, chile, ginger, cilantro, and mint (if using) to a food processor. Pulse in 5-second intervals a few times to finely chop the vegetables.

  2. Transfer the vegetable mixture to a large bowl. Add the carom seeds, turmeric, cayenne, salt, 1/2 teaspoon of the chaat masala, and the semolina flour.

  3. In a small bowl, combine the baking soda and chickpea flour. Add the chickpea flour mixture to the vegetables and stir to combine. Add 1 tablespoon or so more chickpea flour, if needed. You need just a light coating of flour on all the vegetables. 
  4. Let the mixture sit for 2 to 3 minutes so the vegetables can transfer some of their moisture to the flour. Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C). Line a medium baking sheet with parchment paper.
  5. Add the oil and water to the pakora mixture and mix. Depending on the moisture content of the vegetables, you might or might not need more water. The mixture should not be a batter, but should easily form balls in your hands. Add water 1 teaspoon at a time until the mixture just starts to stick. Using your hands, a tablespoon, or an ice cream scoop, place scoops of the pakora mixture on the baking sheet. (To ensure even cooking, keep the scoops small, around 1 1/2 inches [4cm]).

  6.  Spritz or brush additional oil on the pakoras. Bake the pakoras for 22 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy on the outside. Cool for 1 minute. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 teaspoon chaat masala over the pakoras.