Chicken Pakora / Pakoda

Remember this conversation? Well, this Chicken Pakora recipe falls into the category of “something nice”.

A few years ago, one evening we roamed around Bahrain souq. It’s a place lined with kutti kutti shops (small vendors). After roaming around for a while, we stopped at a traditional Bahraini restaurant to have some Karak / Kadak Tea. It’s something very similar to our Masala Chai and I’m a very big fan of that particular restaurant’s Karak Chai.

Obviously when you have evening tea, you need to have something to snack on as well, right? So that day’s special was Chicken Pakora. The thing is… I’m not a big fan of Chicken, especially when we eat it from outside. I always feel people undercook it and that’s one thing I can’t have. I don’t mind overcooked or even rubbery food, but undercooked is a big no for me.

So when we got the pakora, initially I was a bit hesitant to try it for the same reason. So I waited for Jose to eat 5-6 pieces and make sure, it’s cooked well, so that I can eat it. Yeah, living with me is a breeze ;)

Anyways, the pakoras were really good and that’s the first time we tasted Chicken Pakora. Ever since, Jose has been going on-and-on about it and the question of “why dont you make something nice”  happens often.

Finally, after him asking me for more than 2 years, I thought it was time to make it at home. Again, I’m very easy like that ;)

So, I didn’t tell him about the plan, otherwise I’ll get a tonnes of instructions about how it should be made, which I clearly don’t need ;)

However while frying these I couldn’t help myself and I called him over to the kitchen to taste and see. Well, he was kinda thrilled! Btw, I’m sure he thinks some “monumental” change has happened to me, because after the pancakes, chicken pakora also happened.

So he is walking the line very carefully these days, since whatever “change” has happened to me, he doesn’t want to tempt the fate :)))

Now that the world cup is coming to an end and I thought this is a good time to share this recipe with you too. If you’re hosting a football match viewing party at home, this is a good recipe to try out. It doesn’t take much time, has simple ingredients and if you’ve eaten any pakora before, you’ll know it’s flavour packed.

So try out this Indian style Chicken popcorn or whatever and I’m sure you’ll love it. This is the best snack or deep fried goodness that you can indulge on a rainy day. I miss those Kerala Monsoon, but hey if you’re out there, curl up in your fav corner of the room with a plate of this deep fried goodness and enjoy the rains for me. 

Btw, here’s a list of some other snacks/recipes to try for the game/match weekend.

Non Veg Options: Chicken Croquettes, Chicken Samosas, Beef Cutlet, Fish Fingers, Fish Crumb Fry, Chicken Spring Rolls, Mutton Kabab, Sesame Prawns Toast

Veg Options: Potato Pops, Vegetable Cutlet, Aloo Bonda, Pepper baby Corn, Mushroom Manchurian, Spinach and Mushroom Rolls, Falafel, Hara Bhara Kabab

Here is the recipe…

Chicken Pakora
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Chicken Pakora / Pakoda

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Author: Maria Jose Martin

Ingredients

  • 200 gms Skinless boneless chicken (cut into bite size pieces (refer notes))
  • 1 Chopped Green chilli
  • 1 tsp each Crushed ginger & garlic
  • 1 medium Onion (sliced)
  • 1/3 cup + 1 tbsp Gram flour (besan/kadalamavu)
  • 2 tbsp Rice powder (I used Appam podi)
  • A pinch Asafoetida (kayam)
  • 2 tsp Oil (I used sunflower oil)
  • 2 - 2.5 tsp Kashmiri chilli powder
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 10 Curry leaves
  • 1/2 tbsp Chopped coriander leaves
  • Salt
  • Oil for deep frying (I used sunflower oil)

Instructions

  • Clean and pat dry the bite size chicken pieces. Add the rest of the ingredients (except oil for frying) and mix well. Add 1/4 - 1/3 cup water gradually and make a thick batter. Make sure all the chicken pieces are coated with the batter. Let it rest for 15 -20 mins.
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  • Heat oil for deep frying in a deep and wide pan on med - high flame. The oil should be hot, but not smoking. Add one piece of chicken to test the temp of oil and if it's ready, add chicken pieces and cook till it's done. The pakoras should be golden  - dark brown in colour (according to your preference) Read notes section for more details on frying. 
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Notes

I used skinless boneless chicken thighs for this recipe.You can also use chicken breast. the cooking time may be less for chicken breast.
The batter should be thick and not runny. 
If you prefer a puffed up pakora, you can add 1/4 tsp of baking soda, I didn't use it. 
I used the smallest burner in the stove to fry the chicken pieces. Make sure the oil isnt too hot / smoking. Otherwise the the outer covering becomes dark brown and inside remains uncooked. 
To ensure proper cooking of chicken, make sure the pieces are bite size and not too big. Also, once the oil is hot enough, reduce the flame to low - medium and fry the chicken.
Make sure you dont overcrowd the frying pan, it may reduce the temp of oil. For an added crunch, you can add some fried curry leaves too. 
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