Broccoli Pakode

Course : Curry
Serves: 4
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1 small onion -- coarsely chopped
2 cloves garlic -- peeled
1 piece fresh root ginger -- peeled and chopped
1 medium fresh green chillies -- seeded, up to 2
15 grams fresh coriander -- leaves and tender stalks
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon chilli powder -- (optional)
1/2 teaspoon salt
150 gram besan -- (chick-pea flour), sieved
1 tablespoon ground rice
150 milliliter water
1 1/2 liters oil for deep frying
130 gram broccoli -- cut into florets

Preparation / Directions:

Put the onion, garlic, ginger, fresh chillies and fresh coriander in a blender. Add 2tbsp water and blend to a smooth puree. Transfer the puree to a mixing bowl and add the cumin, coriander, chilli powder and salt. Mix well. Add the besan and ground rice. Gradually add the water, and mix until a smooth batter is formed. Heat the oil over a medium heat. The temperature of the oil is crucial, so if you have a deep fat thermometer, heat the oil to 160C/325F, or test the temperature by dropping a tiny amount of the batter into the oil. If the batter floats to the surface immediately without browning, then the oil is at the right temperature. Dip each broccoli floret in batter, making sure it is fully coated. Fry the pakode in the oil until golden brown, about 8-10 minutes. You need to brown them gently to make sure the batter inside is cooked while the outside is crisp. Drain on absorbent paper. Serve with chutney as a starter or with drinks. You can make these pakodes using cauliflower or thickly-sliced potatoes.

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