With Holi a week away but I am already in a festive cooking spree, yesterday it was Gujia and Thandai Masala in my kitchen and today it is Whole Wheat Khasta Kachori. It is ‘his’ favorite Indian snack after samosas. Though I rarely give him a chance to get indulge in deep fried snacks but any given day he can gulp 2 – 3 Kachoris in one go and today was the day. Being a lazy cook I always love snacks which can be stored well for a week. It does not mean I do not like freshly made snacks but when you have boxes full of such snacks (Mini Samosas, Khasta Kachori) in your kitchen shelf, life becomes much easier, especially during festivals when surprise visits by friends and family are not so surprising.
In North India, Samosa and Kachori at roadside tea stalls are very common breakfast or evening snacks, one morning I got a chance to visit such tea stall with my friends. This street vendor was busy rolling outer covering for samosa, on the other hand, while talking on the phone to his family he was stirring the potato stuffing for the samosas; by the time one Chottu chopped a kilo of coriander for the masala. He loaded the samosa with coriander chutney, sweet tamarind chutney, and yogurt, which was a sheer delight with a cup of Cutting Chai.
There are so many options for the filling of the Khasta Kachori – fresh peas, onion, cooked moong dal but I prefer using dry moon dal filling because it stays well for a longer period, easy to prepare with no mess. I have used whole wheat flour for the dough to avoid too much maida (all purpose flour) intake. It is great to use durum flour for the texture, if not available and you want crisp Kachori than use all purpose flour in the same amount or even a 50:50 combination of whole wheat and all-purpose flour can also be used to make the Kachori. Learn how to make Whole Wheat Khasta Kachori in few simple steps.
Moong Dal Khasta Kachori
Yields 10 - 12 Kachori
For the Kachori dough
- 1 Cup whole wheat flour
- Salt to taste
- 2 tbsp refined oil
- Chilled water to bind the dough
Ingredients for the filling
- 1/2 Cup Moong Dal Namkeen (packaged)
- 1 tsp asafoetida
- 2 tsp each cumin powder, coriander powder, red chilly powder, mango powder, fennel powder
- 1 tsp pomegranate seeds powder (anardana)
- 1 tsp Chaat masala
- 2 tsp all-purpose flour dissolved in 2 tbsp of water
- Oil for deep-frying
- To bind the dough, mix the flour, salt and oil in a mixing bowl. Combine the mixture using your fingers to get the bread crumbs like consistency.
- Add the chilled water one tablespoon at a time, and start binding the dough. Add water in small portions.
- Once the dough comes together, knead it for 5 - 6 minutes. The dough should be soft yet firm to touch. Cover the dough with a wet muslin cloth and let it sit for at least fifteen minutes.
- Meanwhile, prepare the filling for kachori. Add namkeen in a food processor or mixer.
- In a pan dry roast all the spices till aromatic. Allow them to cool a bit. Then add them in the same food processor jar as namkeen.
- Blend them together to make a coarse mixture. Transfer to a bowl. We require crunchy mixture and not a fine powder for the filling.
- To shape the kachoris, divide the dough into twelve small-sized balls. Take one part of the dough and with your fingers flatten the edges and make into 3-inch circle just like a small poori. Leaving center little thicker then edges.
- Place 1 teaspoon of filling in the center. Pull the edges of the dough all the edges and join them all together at one place like a dimsum. Proceed to make all 12 balls. Let the filled ball sit for 3 – 4 minutes before flattening.
- Place the filled balls on a flat surface with the seams facing up. Using the base of your palm, slowly and gently flatten them into about three inches in diameter.
- Heat the oil in a deep frying pan over medium heat. To check if oil is ready put a little piece of dough in the oil. Dough should sizzle, and come up very slow.
- Fry Kachori in small batches on medium-low heat. After they start to puff, slowly turn them over. Fry until golden-brown on both sides. If the kachoris are fried on high heat, they will get soft and will not be crispy.
- Serve Moong Dal Khasta Kachori with green chutney ( see recipe )
- and amchur ki launji ( see recipe ).
- Dough for the Kachori should never be sticky. As a test, when you press your finger into the dough, you have to apply a little pressure and the dough should not stick to your finger.
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