Thursday, February 18, 2010

ICC - Khachori - Fried Bread Stuffed with Onion

Real World : Cannot miss deadlines.
Blogging World: Can miss deadlines. Sometimes might get thrown out of group, but bloggers are known to be generally benevolent. I have yet to meet a Genghis Khan blogger in disguise.

Real World: Face threats, impact job security, reputation at stake if deadlines are not met.
Blogging World: You get to eat your deadline.

And so along I come with a painfully overdue challenge - from Indian Cooking Challenge - the monthly event hosted by
Srivalli where she challenges bloggers to try out authentic Indian treats. This month's challenge was Khasta Khachori - a fried bread or dunpling which is traditionally stuffed with curried moong dal, peas or onions.

Big reveal - I've never had a khachori, so I didn't quite know what to expect when making them. OK, I take that back, I once visited an Indian snack stall during an event years ago, and bought a box of "katori" - they were round balls of fried dough with a pungent green interior. I recall they tasted pretty bad, and I never attempted to have them again.

The problem was that person who made those "katoris" that day did not have Srivalli or Medhaa to guide them. These kachoris are pretty delightful, they are golden, crisp and filled with a heady aromatic blend of spices wrapped around some golden onions. I didn't get to try the peas and moong dal fillings, but I hope to at some later stage. The only reservation was the fact that these snacks are DEEP FRIED, painfully DEEP FRIED, as in 6-7 long minutes to get them to cook.

Thanks Srivalli and Medhaa! And check out
Srivalli's step-by-step tutorial on how to make these beauties!

Kachori - adapted from
Medhaa and Tarla Dalal

Resting Time for the Dough is app 1/2 hr - 1 hr
Frying time for the Kachoris - 20 mins for each batch.
Soaking Time for the Filling is app. 1 hr
Cooking Time for the Filling is app 15 mins
Yields - 12

For the DoughAll purpose flour - 2 cups
Oil/ Ghee - 1/4 cup ,
Salt - 1/2 tsp
Chilled water for kneading

1.Mix the flour and salt, Add the oil/ghee and mix till you get a bread crumbs texture.
2.Slowly add water and make a soft dough.
3.Knead well for about 8 minutes. Cover and keep aside to rest for at least half hour.

Special Tips / Notes for the dough:
Keep the dough covered at all times, if not it will dry up and not puff up when frying.

Fillings (3 options)
1. Khasta Kachori - Moong Dal Kachori

Split Moong Dal (yellow) - 1/2 cup
Cumin Seeds - 1 tsp
Hing / Asafoetida - a pinch
Curry Leaves - 2 tsp chopped fine (opt)
Green Chilli - Ginger paste - 1 tsp
Sauf / Fennel seeds powder - 1 tsp
Garam Masala - 1/2 tsp
Red Chilli powder - 1/2 tsp
Mango powder / Amchur - 1 tsp
Oil - 1 tsp
Salt to taste

1. Wash and Soak dal in water for at least 1 hour. You can go upto 4 hours not more.
2. Drain the water well.
3. Grind the dal coarsely.
4. Heat oil in a pan.
5. Add the hing and cumin seeds.
6. Once the seeds splutter add the curry leaves.
7. Add the dal.
8. Lower the heat and keep stirring for 5 minutes till the dal stops sticking to the pan.
9. Cook for another 10 minutes on low till the dal turns slightly brown.
10. Add all the masalas.
11. Cook for few minutes till the aroma of the spices hit you.
12. Add Salt.
13. Remove from heat and keep aside to cool.

Special Tips / Notes for the filling:
The fillings have to be really dry if not when rolling they will ooze out when rolling.

2. Muttar Ki Kachori - for the Peas filling (from Tarla Dalal):
2 cups green peas
1 teaspoon green chillies, chopped
1 teaspoon ginger, grated
1/2 teaspoon nigella seeds (kalonji)
2 teaspoons fennel seeds (saunf)
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon chilli powder
1 teaspoon garam masala
4 tablespoons chopped coriander
2 tablespoons oil
Salt to taste

1. Coarsely grind the green peas,green chillies and ginger in a blender without using any water. Keep aside.
2. Heat the oil in a pan,add the nigella seeds, fennel seeds, bay leaves and ground green pea mixture and saute over a very slow flame for 8 to 10 minutes.
3. Add the chilli powder, garam masala, coriander and salt and saute for 2 more minutes.
4. Remove the bay leaves and discard. Divide into 12 equal portions.

3. Pyaz Ki Kachori - for the Onion filling
2 cups onions, finely chopped
1 teaspoon nigella seeds (kalonji)
2 teaspoons fennel seeds (saunf)
2 bay leaves
1½ teaspoons green chillies, finely chopped
2 tablespoons Bengal gram flour (besan)
2 teaspoons coriander (dhania) powder
2 teaspoons chilli powder
1 teaspoon garam masala
3 tablespoons chopped coriander
2 tablespoons oil
Salt to taste

1. Heat the oil in a pan.
2. Add the nigella seeds, fennel seeds, bay leaves, green chillies and onions and sauté till the onions turn light brown in colour.
3. Add the gram flour, coriander powder, chilli powder, garam masala and salt and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes.
4. Add the chopped coriander and mix well.
5. Remove the bay leaves and discard. Allow the mixture to cool completely.
6. Divide into 12 equal portions and keep aside.

To Make Kachori's
1. Make a small ball from the dough.
2. Roll out into a 2 inch diameter circle. Or flatten the ball using your fingers having the center thick and sides little thin.
3. Place about 1.5 tsp of the filling in the center of the rolled dough.
4. Cover the filling with the dough by slowly stretching it over the filling.
5. Seal the ends and remove excess dough.
6. Repeat with all the balls and keep aside for 5 -7 mins.
7. Then using your palm, flatten the balls by lightly pressing it.
8. Keep aside covered. Repeat with the remaining dough.
9. Meanwhile heat some oil for deep frying. The oil should not become smoking hot. Test to see if the temperature is right by dropping a tiny ball of dough and see if it is rising slowly to the top.
10. Drop the kachoris in batches of 3-4 gently into the oil.
It should rise up slowly. If you don't want to use lot of oil, use just enough for two or three at a time and fry them.
11. After it rises up (about 2 minutes), turn it over.
12. Cook for about 6 to 10 minutes till the side down gets a golden brown color.
13. Turn and cook the other side for another 6 minutes or till its golden brown in color.
14. Remove when done, cool and store in airtight container.


Jaya Wagle said...

You never had kachori! What world did you grow up in girl? Ok, I recall vaguely a hot continet but I may be wrong.
But for someone who ate kachori once in her life, you made three kinds in one go. I bow at your feet, deadline be dammned.
As someone who grew up eating kachori with her evening tea (store bought, of course) and have had all kinds including a delicious potato filling one (not to be confused with samosa) I would never make muster up enough courage to make them at home. Not only because of the process involved but also because of the deep frying time involved. How is you waist line doing BTW? :)

Asha said...

So perfectly round Kachoris, looks so yum.

tasteofbeirut said...

I am envious! Yours look so yummy! I can't wait to try this recipe! Love much!

s said...

the truth be told I too had never had kachoris until this challenge..but atleast urs look like k. Mine look like pooris. but tasty arent they!

Chef Aimee said...

All of these fillings look wonderful...I want to try the onion one first! Indeed, at least with blog deadlines you get to eat it! :)

Joanne said...

I so would rather live in the blogger world than the real world. It is so much more fun and less stressful!

I spend a lot of time thinking about cooking Indian food but next to no time actually doing it. I probably need to look into this event. These look delicious!

Lele said...

Those are gorgeous! I love ordering them at restaurants but was always too intimidated to make them at home, but your directions are really clear!

Ann said...

@ Everyone - thanks for stopping by folks! Hmmmpphhh.....unfortunately with all these foodie challenges, my waistline and hips are showing the end "results".