Ribbon Pakoda


Hardly had any time to recover from Halloween and here is Diwali. For us, it comes a day early, Diwali is tomorrow (Saturday).  I wasn’t going to post any Diwali recipes, simply because I had to whip out six treats in a day and taking pictures for posting a recipe kind of seemed impossible. However, I promised a friend that I would post ribbon pakoda recipe, so here it is.

Ribbon Pakodas are deep fried savory snack, usually made during Diwali. Always a huge hit with kids, loved equally by adults too. My aunt makes the best ribbon pakodas I have ever eaten, but also she grinds everything from scratch (soaking rice and all). This is a modification of her recipe, an attempt to reciprocate all the flavors without taking much trouble 🙂

You will need :

  1. Rice flour – 3 cups
  2. Besan / gram flour / Garbanzo flour – 1 cup
  3. Red chilli powder – 3 tsp
  4. Garam masala – 1 tsp
  5. Ginger Garlic paste – 3 tsp
  6. Salt – 4 tsp
  7. Asafoetida – 1/2 tsp
  8. Water (to make dough)
  9. Oil (to fry)
  10. Ghee /Melted butter – 1 tbsp
  • Mix rice flour, besan, salt, red chilli powder and garam masala.

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  • Dilute ginger garlic paste with water and add asafoetida to this water.

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  • Filter this mixture and add just the liquid to the flour mix. Mix the liquid in the flour evenly.

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  • Add 1 tbsp of melted butter or melted ghee to the flour and mix well.

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  • Now add enough water to the flour and knead it to a dough (like chappathi dough). We will be working with the dough only in batches, so cover it with a wet towel or wet paper towel until needed.

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  • This is the “Murukku” press, similar to a cookie press. To make ribbon pakodas, use the disc shown in the picture below.

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  • Heat oil in a pot for frying the pakodas. Take a portion of the dough and pour a tablespoon of hot oil on it and knead well. This helps a lot in making the pakodas crispier.

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  • Load the dough into the press.

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  • Press the dough directly into the hot oil.

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  • Cook until the sizzle calms down. Drain the pakodas on a paper towel.

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  • Repeat the steps until all the dough is used. Remember to knead hot oil into the dough right before loading it in the press every time.

The recipe in itself is very simple. Here are some debugging tips that may be useful, if you are trying this for the first time.

  • If the pakodas come out hard, there is not enough fat in the dough, so add some melted butter or ghee to the dough.
  • If the pakodas suck up lots of oil, there is more water in the dough, so add more flour.
  • If it is too hard to press out the pakodas, the dough is too tight, so add more water.
  • If the pakodas  lose shape in oil, the dough is loose, so add more flour.
  • Constantly adjust heat. If the oil is smoking, reduce the heat. If oil is foaming up on the surface increase the heat.
  • As soon as you make the first batch of pakodas, taste them to check salt and crunchiness and make changes accordingly.

These tips hold good for all types of Murukkus/Chaklis.

Wishing you all a wonderful Diwali !!

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Mysorepak


Mysorepak is one such sweet , that you can’t just read a recipe, do it and get it right. There is a rhythm to the making of it and you have to do atleast a couple of times to find your own and make mysorepaks with the melt in your mouth texture and yet not like a burfi. I had the hardest time taking pics for this recipe as in the last 5 minutes things happen really fast , and managing the camera and the stirring was a challenge. However, I hope if you are looking for a mysorepak recipe this could help you.Image
Besan (chick peas flour)- 1 cup
Sugar – 2 cups
water – 1/2 cup
Ghee – 1 cup
flavorless oil – 1 cup(I like the mix of ghee and oil, when you use just ghee, the texture doesn’t come right…it comes out very soft , like a burfi. And we won’t be fully using the 2 cups of ghee and oil mix, but its always better to have this amount on hand ready, coz’ while making the mysorepak, if you need more ghee/oil…it would be too late.)Image

Mix 1 cup of ghee and 1 cup of oil and heat it to smoking hot, then lower down the flame and keep it in ‘sim’ until the mysorepak is done. The key is that it should be hot, not warm.Image
Heat 3 tbsp of oil (you can take some from ghee+oil mix) and add it to the besan. The oil has to be hot enough so that you hear a sizzle and you can also see it bubbling when you add to the besan. Do not skip this step, this takes the raw smell out of besan.Image
Mix the oil well with the besan, try to break the lumps with spoon, but do not worry much about them. I always add it like this, the lumps smooth out in the syrup anyways.Image
Grease the plate you will be pouring the mysorepak in at the end.Image
I have one heavy bottomed pot to make the mysorepak and the ghee+oil pot in the nearby burner (keep it hot)Image
Add the sugar and water to the pot to make the syrup.Image
Stir until sugar completely dissolves. The consistency we are looking for is 1-string. But you don’t have to check the string. when you see the sugar boiling like this, it is 1-string consistency.Image
Add the besan to the syrup. You will see lumps now…but do not worry about that.keep stirring for a couple of minute before you start to add ghee.Image
Pour a big spoon of hot ghee+oil to the mix. Ofcourse, you have to hear the sizzle and you will see the hot ghee cooking the top layer instantly.Image
Mix well until the ghee is absorbed. Keep adding ghee and keep stirring.Image
The mixture will take in all the ghee you are adding. Notice the smooth texture…Image
Notice how the texture is becoming flaky, its the beginning of the end .Image
Slowly the ghee+oil will start oozing out of the mixture. Image
The mixture will not stick to the bottom anymore.Image
When it rolls easily into one big lump you know its done…if you leave it on heat any longer, it will start to brown/burn.Image
Quickly transfer the mysorepak to the greased plate….the mysorepak will continue to cook.
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Smooth the top without pressing too hard, the top layer will look rough….that’s how mysorepak is.Image
Mark lines when it is still warm. But you can wait for it cool down before you cut them into pieces.Image
The cooking time, from making the syrup to pouring the finished mysorepak to the greased plate won’t be more than 10 – 12 mins. But those 10 mins definitely need your undivided attention.  Good luck !Image