Festivals is the time I miss home aka India the most! The get togethers , the enthusiasm and the food!!
The festival of Holi calls for a variety of delicious sweet and savory snacks like gujiya, namkeen-paare, kulfi, mathris and thandaai. One of the most loved Indian snacks, crispy or ‘khasta’ dal kachori is a particular favorite for this festival of colors that marks the beginning of spring season.
With a flavorful moong dal mixture as filling, this crispy pastry is deep-fried patiently on a low flame to achieve that crisp crust and a well-cooked interior.
Give this traditional recipe a go and enjoy! Wish you all a very HAPPY HOLI!!
For the dough-
-1.25 cup plain flour (maida)
-1/8 tsp carom seeds
-A pinch of baking powder
-2 tbsp hot ghee (clarified butter)
-1/4 cup cold water
-A pinch of salt
For the filling-
-1/2 cup yellow moong dal/petite yellow lentils (soaked for 2-3 hours)
-1 tsp fennel powder
-1 tsp coriander powder
-1 tsp red chilly powder
-1tsp mango powder
-Pinch of asafoetida
-Salt to taste
-1-2 tbsp ghee or oil
Other ingredients needed-
Oil to fry
– In a bowl, mix the flour, salt, baking powder and carom seeds.
– Add sizzling hot ghee to your flour and rub the flour between your palms for around 5-6 mins, till you get a uniform bread crumb like consistency. If you take a fistful of flour in your hand, it should hold the shape. Cover and let it rest for ten minutes. This step is very essential to obtain that crisp, flaky kachori skin.
– Add the cold water little by little and combine your flour gently into a smooth mixture. Do not knead at this point. Cover the dough with a damp paper towel and let it rest for at least fifteen minutes.
– In the meanwhile, make the filling. Coarsely ground the soaked moong dal in a blender.
– In a non-stick pan, heat 1-2 tbsn of ghee and roast your moong dal mixture over medium-low heat for 1-2 mins. Stir continuously.
– Add all the dry spices plus salt, and mix well. Stir constantly and cook until you smell a nice aroma. Switch off the gas and let the mixture cool. Your filling is ready!
– Take your dough and knead it very well for a few minutes, till you get an absolutely smooth dough. Divide it in 8-10 round balls and keep the smoothened dough balls covered with a damp cloth.
– Take one doughball and with a rolling pin, roll it into a 3-inch circle, leaving center little thicker then edges.
– Carefully place 1 tsp of filling in the center. Pinch the edges together to wrap the dal filling fully, as we do in a paratha. Proceed to fill all the doughballs with filling one by one, in the same way.
– Let the filled dough balls sit for 2-3 minutes before rolling.
– Using the rolling pin, roll each doughball gently into a thick disk. Do not roll them thin!
– Heat the oil in frying pan over low heat. To check if oil is ready, put a little piece of dough in the oil. Dough should sizzle and take 4-5 seconds to come to the surface.
– Fry the kachoris on low heat only. It takes a lot of patience but is totally worth it! After they start to puff, slowly turn them over. Fry until golden-brown on both sides.
– Serve hot with coriander-mint chutney or tamarind chutney. Enjoy!
– If your kachoris are starting to erupt bubbles on the surface even when your pan is on low heat, that means that the oil has gotten hotter than we need it. In that case, switch it off for sometime till it gets lower in temperature again. Proceed to fry your kachoris once another piece of dough passes the oil temperature test in the way mentioned in the steps above.
– Fillings prepared for the fried food items should always taste a bit over salty to you. This is how I check them always. Be it parathas or samosas or kachoris, when the filling tastes a tad bit too salty to my tongue, that when I know that the saltyness will be apt in the resulting dish!