Whenever I have a lot of any one vegetable, I always find myself wondering if it is suitable for sticking into a spring roll, a samosa or a pakora. For example, there is nothing I like better than a purple beetroot bhaji, so why not try a pumpkin pakora.
I didn't grow up with Indian cuisine so I am definitely no expert so I looked up the difference between a bhaji and a pakora and to be honest I couldn't really find one. It seems that a bhaji is the name given to an onion pakora. So maybe my beetroot bhajis should really be called beetroot pakoras, except I like the alliteration of a beetroot bhaji, and as such, I like the alliteration of a pumpkin pakora. I also, as it happens, like the flavour of a pumpkin pakora too - win, win!
We are not massive Indian food lovers in our house, mainly because we aren't keen on highly spiced foods, particularly chilli. However, when you make pakoras from scratch, you can adjust the spice to match your tastes, and, indeed, create a spice blend to match your preferences, so please feel free to adjust that to your palate. Other than that, it is very straightforward and should you not have gram flour or rice flour, use plain flour and cornflour and it will still turn out tasty, if less authenic.
Pumpkin and Red Onion Pakoras
100g grated pumpkin
1 medium red onion, finely chopped
½ tsp salt
½ tsp turmeric
2 tsp dried herbs
1-2 teaspoons curry powder
80g gram flour
1 tbsp rice or cornflour
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
Mix together the pumpkin, onion, salt, spices and herbs. In a separate bowl, mix together the flours and bicarbonate of soda then add just enough water to form a thick, coating batter. Add the vegetable mix to the batter and stir well. Heat a wok full of oil until hot then add spoonfuls of the batter mix.
Cook in batches, turning once during cooking, until golden brown. Keep warm in the oven until all are cooked then eat hot.