Punjabi Kadhi Pakori – Sunday Comfort Food


Comfort food is a staple for anyone wanting a hearty meal with a little taste of home. There’s nothing like the pleasures of simple, delicious comfort food on the last 2014 weekend at home in London before I fly off to my next holiday mid nextweek. All I wanted is to have a warm fire and a plate of comfort food on a chilly windy cold Sunday while getting on with my packing and scheduling blogposts when I’ll be away (see, I care for you all so much!). Punjabi Kadhi Pakori served with Chawal (steamed rice) is one such comforting classic food to devour for lunch on weekends. Now, to me, eating Kadhi Chawal on Sunday is equivalent to eating your body weight in food but it’s ok because my usual diet starts on Monday…again.

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

This dish is a combination of onion pakoras(fritters) mixed in a cooked creamy, tangy, yoghurt sauce. Pakora Kadhi (pronounced ka-ree) is a typical Punjabi dish which is made regularly in North India. It’s rich, flavourful and filling. Whats better than to indulge yourself in hot Kadhi rice during winter days! Growing up in a Bengali household,  I never had the chance to taste this ultimate comfort food until I was 17 and what I called then was being ”imprisoned” in boarding college in Delhi. So, my first introduction to Kadhi-chawal was at the Miranda House Hostel of University of Delhi and oh! I loved it, as if I had any choice! My food habit is a bit hotchpotch now – I spent the most precious years of my youth in Delhi, India, so the obsession for North Indian or traditional Mughlai food is taken for granted. Later when I moved from hostel to a private accommodation, I attempted to cook dishes that I had never eaten before while living with my parents and it was then I tried cooking Punjabi Kadhi Pakori while living in Delhi. My partner who was just then a budding boy friend and I started getting to know him more and more, was my guinea pig of all culinary discoveries. His living in a hostel too made him deprived of home cooked food. For him, every little opportinuty to eat home cooked food was welcome even if that means forced to eat my initial experiments.  Kadhi was one of the first few dishes I learnt to cook as it is cheaper (back then it was a consideration for an undergraduate student living on Government stipend INR. 5000 p/m) and very easy to prepare too! He loved it then and now as well. As you know I drink juice in two meals a day and eat grilled veggies and fish/ chicken in dinner on weekedays, so naturally this Kadhi- Chawal lunch idea on a Sunday wasn’t entirely my own.

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

In easy 10 steps, cook and savour every mouthful of this rich, comforting Kadhi with yoghurt and gram flour gravy and deep fried potato and onion fritters known as Pakori dunked in it. 

Let’s cook now

Cooking Time : 15 minutes + 30 minutes

Serves 2-4

What I used:
For the Pakora:-

1 cup gram flour

1 ½ medium white onion, thinly sliced

1 potato cut in small cubes

1 small green chilli, finely diced

1 tsp salt

¼ tsp turmeric powder

¼ tsp chilli powder

½ tsp cumin powder

½ tsp coriander powder

Handful fresh coriander, finely chopped

½ cup water

2 cups oil for frying

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

For the Kadhi:-

500g natural yoghurt

6 tbsp gram flour

3 cups water

1 ½ tsp salt

½ tsp turmeric powder

¼ tsp chilli powder

2 tbsp olive oil

¼ tsp asafetida powder

1 tsp cumin powder

1 tsp mustard seeds

1 tsp fenugreek seeds

2/3 dried whole chilli

1 stem curry leaves

3 garlic cloves, paste

1 tsp ginger paste

1 tsp garam masala

Handful of coriander, finely chopped

2/3 green chillies

How I cooked:
Step One: To the make the onion pakoras, in a bowl add together the gram flour, onion, green chilli, salt, turmeric powder, chilli powder, and coriander powder

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

Step Two: Gradually add the water and mix well.

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

Step Three: To  make the pakoras, heat the oil in a wok. Once hot, take small portions of the batter and drop it in the oil. You can use your  fingers or a tablespoon if you prefer.

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

Step Four: Fry until golden brown.

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

Munch on a piece or two of these Ahh-mazing hot pakoras while making the Kadhi sauce
Munch on a piece or two of these Ahh-mazing hot pakoras while making the Kadhi sauce

Step Five: To make the Kadhi sauce, using  the same bowl, I added the yoghurt, gram flour, salt, turmeric powder and chilli powder.

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

Step Six:  Gradually add the water and mix using a whisk ensuring there are no lumps.

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

Step Seven: Heat the olive oil in a pan. Add the asafetida, fenugreek seeds, cumin seeds, mustard seeds, whole dried red chilli, curry leaves and green chillies. Mix and cook until the the curry leaves turn little pale.

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

Step Eight: Gradually add the gram flour and yoghurt mixture and bring it to a boil on high heat. Now reduced the heat to medium and add 1 cup of water whilst mixing with a whisk.

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

Step Nine: Now add the pakoras and gently mix. Add the garam masala, fresh coriander and curry leaves and cook on low for 10 minutes.

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

Step Ten: Serve the Punjabi kadhi pakori hot with basmati rice and garnish with coriander and curry leaves.

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

Top tips: 

Number One- Adding potato to the kadhi and pakora is optional, if you don’t like potato you can skip it very well.

Number Two- Adjust water to your desired consistency, and also before set to boil make the kadhi little thin, so upon boiling it tend to thicken slightly.

Number Three- Instead of onion pakora you can also make spinach pakora, wash and chop spinach and mix it with besan (gram flour).

Punjabi Kadi Pakori - Sunday Comfort Food

Bon Appétit!

12 thoughts on “Punjabi Kadhi Pakori – Sunday Comfort Food”

    1. Yes, Gram flour is besan. Asafeotedia is a powder looks like fine salt- it is called Hing in Hindi. It is used to tamper lentils in India-almost in all places. Hop on to your local Indian grocery store and you’ll find it for sure. If you cook this dish, don’t forget to let me know how did it turn out, I like to know your views:) Best wishes!

    1. Hello Story teller! I devour in Rajma Chawal and chole to my heart’s content. Good to know you do too:) Even great to see you here. Thanks for reading the posts. Would love to see you more often in this space.

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