When I was a monk, one of the favorite things we looked forward to were the cauliflower pakoras at the weekly Sunday feast. Pakoras are a traditional part of North Indian cuisine and are deep fried battered vegetables, usually cauliflower, onions, peppers, or potatoes.
The North America (non-veg) equivalent of pakoras is “Buffalo wings” and “KFC drumsticks”. Recently, someone in the vegan community created a vegan version of buffalo wings and a vegan ranch dressing. But although it was a nice alternative it really cannot compare to a traditional pakora or a KFC drumstick.
The recipe I am going to share here is not meant to be a fake meat version of KFC’s drumstick but more of a KFC-version of a traditional pakora, and it is based on the actual KFC recipe. Enjoy!
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Makes: 8 servings
- 1 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup chickpea (Garbanzo) flour
- 1/3 cup rice flour
- 2/3 tablespoon salt
- 1/2 tablespoon dried thyme leaves
- 1/2 tablespoon dried basil leaves
- 1/3 tablespoon dried oregano leaves
- 1 tablespoon celery salt
- 1 tablespoon ground black pepper1 tablespoon dried mustard powder
- 2 tablespoons paprika
- 1 tablespoon of coriander powder
- 1 tablespoon turmeric powder
- 1 tsp ground ginger
- 3 tablespoons ground white pepper
- 1/4 cup vegan yogurt
- 1 Tbsp flax seed oil
- Enough water to make a slow running batter
- Cut one whole cauliflower into florets with a long stem.
- Oil for deep frying
- Mix the flour in a bowl with all the herbs and spices; set aside.
- Mix the vegan yogurt and flaxseed oil together in a separate bowl until combined.
- Add yogurt/oil mixture to flour and then while whisking, add enough water until you get a slow-running batter.
- Cover and place batter in the fridge for 30 minutes to rest.
- Meanwhile, steam the cauliflowers for 2 minutes or until tender. Drain.
- Add oil to a large, deep saucepan or wok to reach a depth of 8cm. Heat to 170°C over high heat (when the oil is ready a cube of bread will turn golden in 20 seconds). Add cauliflower to the batter and stir to coat. Add the batter-dipped cauliflower florets to the oil. Cook for 3 minutes or until crisp and golden. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the cauliflower to a plate lined with paper towel. Repeat with remaining cauliflower, reheating the oil between batches.
- Place the cauliflower in a serving bowl lined with paper towels. Top with fresh coriander and season with salt.