Restaurant Style Paneer Pakora Recipe | Homemade Paneer Pakode

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Masala paneer pakora is a popular Indian snack that features chunks of paneer (Indian cottage cheese) coated in a spicy and flavorful batter and deep-fried until crispy. It is a delicious and satisfying appetizer that is enjoyed by people of all ages.

The preparation of masala paneer pakora typically involves marinating the homemade paneer in a mixture of spices and yogurt to enhance its taste. The paneer is then dipped in a batter made of gram flour (besan), rice flour, spices, and water to form a thick coating. The batter is seasoned with various aromatic spices such as turmeric, red chili powder, cumin powder, garam masala, and chaat masala, which give the pakoras their distinctive flavor.

Once the paneer pieces are well-coated with the batter, they are deep-fried in hot oil until they turn golden brown and crispy on the outside. The fried pakoras are then drained on a kitchen towel to remove any excess oil.

Masala paneer pakoras are typically served hot with mint & cilantro chutney, tamarind chutney, or tomato ketchup as accompaniments. They can be enjoyed as a standalone snack or served as a part of a larger meal. The combination of the soft and creamy paneer with the spicy and crunchy outer coating creates a delightful texture and flavor contrast.

The popularity of masala paneer pakoras stems from the rich and irresistible taste of paneer combined with the aromatic spices and the satisfying crunch of the batter. It is a perfect choice for parties, festivals, or simply as a quick and indulgent treat.

There is great combination of paneer pakora with almond tea , masala chai or cutting chai .

 

About Pakora

Pakora, also known as pagoda, is a popular Indian snack that consists of various ingredients, such as vegetables, cheese, or meat, coated in a spiced batter and deep-fried until crispy. It is a versatile and flavorful dish enjoyed across the Indian subcontinent.

The choice of ingredients for pakoras is vast, allowing for a wide range of flavors and textures. Common vegetable pakoras include onion pakoras (pyaaz pakora), spinach pakoras (palak pakora), and potato pakoras (aloo pakora). Paneer (Indian cottage cheese) pakoras and chicken pakoras are also popular options. The chosen ingredient is typically sliced or chopped into bite-sized pieces, dipped into the batter, and then deep-fried until golden and crispy.

The appeal of pakoras lies in their crispy exterior and soft, flavorful interior. The combination of the spiced batter and the ingredients creates a delightful contrast of textures and tastes. Pakoras are beloved street food and can be found in roadside stalls, restaurants, and homes throughout the Indian subcontinent.

Overall, pakoras are a delicious and versatile snack that showcases the diverse flavors and culinary traditions of India. Whether you prefer vegetable pakoras, cheese pakoras, or meat pakoras, they are sure to satisfy your craving for a crispy and tasty treat.

 

To achieve truly Crispy Pakora

Dry the Ingredients: Ensure that the ingredients you are using, such as vegetables or meat, are properly dried before dipping them in the batter. Excess moisture can make the pakoras soggy. Pat them dry with a kitchen towel or paper towel.

Consistency of Batter: Prepare a smooth and thick batter by gradually adding water to the gram flour (besan) or a combination of besan and rice flour/cornflour. The batter should have a slightly thick pouring consistency, similar to a pancake batter. Avoid making it too thin as it can result in less crispy pakoras.

Rest the Batter: Allow the batter to rest for 15-20 minutes before using it. This helps in the activation of gluten in besan and enhances the crispiness of the pakoras.

Right Temperature: Heat the oil to the correct temperature before frying the pakoras. The oil should be moderately hot, around 350-375°F (175-190°C). If the oil is too hot, the pakoras may burn on the outside before the inside cooks properly. If the oil is not hot enough, the pakoras will absorb more oil and become greasy.

Small Batches: Fry the pakoras in small batches, ensuring that there is enough space for them to cook evenly. Overcrowding the pan can lower the temperature of the oil and result in less crispy pakoras.

Deep-Fry Technique: Dip the individual pieces into the batter, coating them well, and then carefully slide them into the hot oil. Avoid dropping them from a height, as this can cause the oil to splatter. Flip the pakoras occasionally for even cooking and browning.

Drain Excess Oil: Once the pakoras turn golden brown and crispy, use a slotted spoon or tongs to remove them from the oil. Place them on a wire rack or paper towels to drain any excess oil.

Serve Immediately: Serve the pakoras immediately while they are still hot and crispy. The longer they sit, the more likely they are to lose their crispiness.

 

Which oil to use for frying Pakora?

Traditionally, pakoras are deep-fried in oil to achieve their crispy texture. When selecting an oil for frying pakoras, it’s best to choose an oil with a high smoke point and neutral flavor. Here are a few options commonly used:

Vegetable Oil: Vegetable oils like canola, sunflower, or safflower oil are commonly used for deep-frying pakoras. They have a high smoke point and a neutral flavor, which allows the flavors of the pakoras to shine.

Peanut Oil: Peanut oil is another popular choice for frying pakoras. It has a high smoke point and imparts a slightly nutty flavor to the pakoras. It is commonly used in Indian cooking and provides good results in terms of crispiness.

Corn Oil: Corn oil is another suitable option for frying pakoras. It has a high smoke point and a mild flavor that won’t overpower the taste of the pakoras.

Grapeseed Oil: Grapeseed oil is a relatively neutral-tasting oil with a high smoke point, making it suitable for deep-frying pakoras.

When choosing an oil, make sure to use one that is fresh and hasn’t been used for multiple frying sessions, as reused oil can affect the flavor and quality of the pakoras. Additionally, maintain the frying oil at the proper temperature to ensure the pakoras cook evenly and absorb minimal oil.

Remember, whichever oil you choose, always exercise caution while deep-frying and follow safe frying practices.

 

How to make Masala Paneer Pakora

  • Take a mixing bowl, add the besan, ajwain, haldi powder, laal mirch powder, dhania powder, haldi, and salt, and mix it once.
  • Then add water slowly and gradually to make a semi-thin batter, whisk well while adding water to ensure a lump-free and smooth batter.

Tip: If you want to make your pakoras to be a little crispier, you could wish to add 1/2 tap soda and whisk well, I don’t prefer adding soda, but in the end, it’s your personal choice.

Let the batter rest for 10-15 minutes.

  • Take the masala paneer block and cut in your desired shape, I’ve chosen to cut in cuboid and dip the paneer into the batter and coat well.
  • Deep fry the paneer pakoras in hot oil on medium-high heat until crisp & golden brown. Fry as many as you would wish to.
  • Your masala paneer pakora is ready to be served, serve it hot& crispy with green mint chutney or ketchup, or any dip of your choice. Serve it immediately and enjoy this during the evening time with your family over a great conversation.

 

Serving Suggestions

Chutneys: Serve paneer pakoras with a variety of chutneys for dipping. Mint chutney, tamarind chutney, and coriander chutney are popular choices. These chutneys add a tangy and refreshing element that complements the flavors of the pakoras.

Sauce or Ketchup: If you prefer a simpler dip, you can serve paneer pakoras with tomato ketchup or any other favorite dipping sauce. The tanginess and sweetness of the ketchup pair well with the savory pakoras.

Yogurt Dip: Prepare a creamy yogurt dip by mixing yogurt with chopped mint leaves, finely grated cucumber, salt, and a pinch of cumin powder. This dip adds a cooling and refreshing element to balance the spices in the pakoras.

Salad: Accompany paneer pakoras with a fresh salad on the side. A simple salad made with sliced onions, tomatoes, cucumber, and lemon juice can provide a refreshing contrast to the crispy pakoras.

Chaat Style: Transform the paneer pakoras into a delicious chaat by garnishing them with chopped onions, tomatoes, sev (crispy chickpea flour noodles), and a drizzle of tangy tamarind chutney and mint chutney. This adds a burst of flavors and textures to the pakoras.

Tea-Time Snack: Enjoy paneer pakoras as a tea-time snack along with a hot cup of masala chai or your favorite tea. The combination of the crispy pakoras and the warm, aromatic tea is delightful.

Platter with Other Snacks: Create a platter of assorted snacks by combining paneer pakoras with other favorites like vegetable pakoras, samosas, or papdi chaat. This makes for a tempting spread during parties or gatherings.

 

Paneer Pakora Variations

Stuffed Paneer Pakoras: Instead of plain paneer cubes, stuff them with a flavorful filling before coating them in the batter. You can use a mixture of spiced mashed potatoes, grated paneer, or a combination of vegetables like spinach, peas, and carrots. The stuffed pakoras will have an extra burst of flavor and texture.

Paneer Palak Pakoras: Add a twist to the traditional paneer pakoras by incorporating spinach (palak) into the batter. Blend a handful of fresh spinach leaves with the batter ingredients to create a vibrant green batter. Dip the paneer cubes in this spinach-infused batter and fry them until crispy.

Masala Paneer Pakoras: Give your paneer pakoras an extra kick of flavor by adding a homemade masala blend to the batter. Mix spices like roasted cumin powder, coriander powder, amchur (dried mango powder), chaat masala, and a pinch of black salt into the batter. These spices will infuse the pakoras with a deliciously tangy and savory flavor.

Paneer Tikka Pakoras: For a fusion twist, marinate the paneer cubes in a tangy and spicy tikka marinade before coating them in the batter. You can use a yogurt-based tikka marinade with spices like red chili powder, turmeric, cumin, garam masala, ginger-garlic paste, and lemon juice. After marinating the paneer, dip them in the batter and fry until crispy.

Paneer Bhurji Pakoras: Prepare a flavorful paneer bhurji mixture by sautéing crumbled paneer with onions, tomatoes, and spices. Let it cool, then shape the mixture into small patties or balls. Coat these paneer bhurji patties in the batter and deep-fry them until golden brown. This variation adds a delightful texture and an explosion of flavors to the pakoras.

Paneer and Vegetable Pakoras: Combine paneer with a mix of finely chopped vegetables like onions, bell peppers, carrots, and cabbage. Mix the vegetables with the paneer and spices, and then coat the mixture with the batter. Fry the pakoras until crispy and enjoy the combination of flavors and textures.

 

Expert Tips

Consistency of Batter: Achieving the right consistency of the batter is crucial. It should be smooth and thick enough to coat the ingredients evenly. If the batter is too thin, the pakoras may turn out soggy, and if it’s too thick, they may become heavy. Adjust the amount of water gradually while mixing the batter to achieve the desired consistency.

Seasoning: Properly season the batter with spices to enhance the flavor of the pakoras. Along with basic spices like turmeric, red chili powder, and salt, consider adding additional spices such as cumin powder, coriander powder, fennel seeds, or ajwain (carom seeds) for added depth and aroma.

Preparing Vegetables: If you’re making vegetable pakoras, it’s important to prepare the vegetables correctly. Slice or chop the vegetables into thin and even pieces to ensure they cook evenly. For vegetables like potatoes or onions, you can lightly sprinkle salt over them and let them sit for a few minutes to draw out excess moisture before coating them in the batter.

Adding a Crunch: To enhance the texture and crunch of the pakoras, you can mix in some rice flour or cornflour with the gram flour (besan) for the batter. This addition gives a crispier texture to the pakoras.

Adding Baking Soda or Lemon Juice: To make the pakoras light and airy, you can add a pinch of baking soda or a few drops of lemon juice to the batter. This helps in making the pakoras fluffy and crisp.

Maintaining Oil Temperature: Keep the oil at a consistent temperature throughout the frying process. If the oil is too hot, the pakoras may burn quickly on the outside while remaining undercooked inside. If the oil is not hot enough, the pakoras will absorb excess oil and become greasy. Maintain the oil temperature between 350-375°F (175-190°C) for best results.

Fry in Small Batches: Avoid overcrowding the pan or fryer when frying pakoras. Frying in small batches ensures that the pakoras cook evenly and remain crispy. Overcrowding the pan can lower the oil temperature and result in less crispy pakoras.

Serve Fresh: Pakoras are best enjoyed fresh and hot. Serve them immediately after frying to retain their crispy texture. If you need to prepare them in advance, you can reheat them in an oven or air fryer for a few minutes to regain some of the crispiness.

 

FAQs

Q: What are pakoras?

A: Pakoras are a popular Indian snack made by deep-frying various ingredients, such as vegetables, cheese, or meat, in a spiced batter.

 

Q: What is the batter for pakoras made of?

A: The batter for pakoras is typically made from gram flour (besan), rice flour or cornflour, spices, and water. The spices may include turmeric, red chili powder, cumin powder, and more.

 

Q: Can I make pakoras without deep-frying?

A: Deep-frying is the traditional method for making pakoras, as it gives them their characteristic crispy texture. However, you can also try baking pakoras in the oven or using an air fryer for a healthier alternative.

 

Q: Which vegetables are commonly used for pakoras?

A: Common vegetables used for pakoras include onions, potatoes, spinach, cauliflower, eggplant, and chili peppers. However, you can use a wide variety of vegetables based on your preference.

 

Q: Are pakoras gluten-free?

A: Pakoras are usually made with gram flour (besan), which is gluten-free. However, it’s important to check the labels of store-bought besan as some brands may process it in facilities that also handle wheat, leading to cross-contamination.

 

Q: What sauces or chutneys can I serve with pakoras?

A: Pakoras are often served with various chutneys, such as mint chutney, tamarind chutney, or tomato ketchup. These condiments complement the flavors of the pakoras and add a tangy or spicy element.

 

Q: Can I make pakoras in advance?

A: While pakoras are best enjoyed fresh and hot, you can make them in advance and reheat them in an oven or air fryer to regain some crispiness. However, note that they may not be as crispy as freshly fried pakoras.

 

Q: Can I freeze pakoras?

A: Yes, you can freeze pakoras after frying them. Allow them to cool completely, place them in an airtight container or freezer bag, and store them in the freezer for up to a month. Reheat them in an oven or air fryer before serving.

 

Q: Can I use different spices in the pakora batter?

A: Yes, you can customize the spices in the pakora batter according to your taste. Feel free to experiment with different spices and seasonings to create unique flavors.

If you like this recipe then try our other Paneer Recipes:

Homemade Paneer

Masala Paneer

Chilli Paneer

Shahi Paneer

Matar Paneer

Please be sure to rate this recipe or leave a comment below if you have made it. For more vegetarian & non – vegetarian inspirations, Sign Up for my emails or follow me on Instagram Youtube, Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest.

Paneer ke Pakode Recipe Card

North Indian Kitchen
Paneer Pakoda made with fresh homemade paneer. Crispy, yummy & healthy to eat.
4.80 from 5 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Appetizer, Starter
Cuisine North Indian
Servings 6
Calories 330 kcal

Equipments

1 Kadai
1 Big mixing bowl

Ingredients

  • 2 Cups Gram Flour (besan)
  • 1 teaspoon Ajwain
  • 2 teaspoon Dhania Powder
  • 2 teaspoon Red chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon Turmeric powder (haldi)
  • 2 teaspoon Aamchur powder
  • Salt to taste
  • Water as required
  • Freshly made Paneer cubes
  • Oil for frying

Instructions
 

  • Take a mixing bowl, add the besan, ajwain, haldi powder, Lal mirch powder, dhania powder, haldi, and salt, and mix it once.
    2. Then add water slowly and gradually to make a semi-thin batter, whisk well while adding water to ensure a lump-free and smooth batter.
    3. Let the batter rest for 10-15 minutes.
    4. Take the masala paneer block and cut in your desired shape, I've chosen to cut in cuboid and dip the paneer into the batter and coat well.
    5. Deep fry the paneer pakoras in hot oil on medium-high heat until crisp & golden brown. Fry as many as you would wish to.
    Your masala paneer pakora is ready to be serve

Video

Notes

  • The key to achieving crispy pakoras lies in the batter consistency, proper seasoning, and maintaining the right frying temperature.
  • These spices can be adjusted according to personal preference and spice tolerance.
  • Vegetables like onions, potatoes, spinach, cauliflower, and eggplant are popular choices for pakoras. 
  • When frying pakoras, it is important to maintain the oil at the right temperature, usually between 350-375°F (175-190°C). This ensures that the pakoras cook evenly and absorb less oil.
  • While deep-frying is the traditional method for making pakoras, you can also experiment with baking or air frying for a healthier alternative. However, note that the texture may differ from the deep-fried version.
  • Pakoras can be customized based on personal preferences and dietary restrictions. For example, gluten-free besan can be used for a gluten-free version, and different vegetable or protein options can be chosen.
Nutrition Facts
Paneer ke Pakode Recipe Card
Amount per Serving
Calories
330
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
22
g
34
%
Saturated Fat
 
8
g
50
%
Trans Fat
 
1
g
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
1
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
1
g
Cholesterol
 
28
mg
9
%
Sodium
 
439
mg
19
%
Potassium
 
259
mg
7
%
Carbohydrates
 
20
g
7
%
Sugar
 
3
g
3
%
Fiber
 
4
g
17
%
Protein
 
13
g
26
%
Vitamin A
 
99
IU
2
%
Vitamin B6
 
1
mg
50
%
Vitamin C
 
1
mg
1
%
Vitamin E
 
1
mg
7
%
Vitamin K
 
1
µg
1
%
Calcium
 
202
mg
20
%
Iron
 
15
mg
83
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword Paneer Pakoda
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2 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Truly easy and simple recipe. I tried it many times as you said in this blog and it was awesome flitters made.
    Thanks

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