Paneer pakora recipe | Amritsari paneer pakora
Paneer pakora recipe | Amritsari paneer pakora- One of the simplest vegetarian snack recipes that requires minimal ingredients and tastes divine with a hint of garlic. It is a perfect party pleaser and an equally perfect kids snack.
I love how my mums handmade paneer pakodas taste, and this is again her recipe.This is a snack which can be made quickly and is perfect for any occasion, big or small. I love adding it to my menu for any get together , big or small. Everyone loves them, and they add a variety to your menu, and ofcourse they are way more healthy than any store bought snack.
These are different than the regular pakora recipe, because it uses very less flour, and has an amazing garlicky flavour with a spice of carom seeds.
What kind of Paneer to use?
The taste of these pakoras depends a lot on what kind of paneer you use. In india the paneer you get is very fresh and soft, and the result is absolutely melt in the mouth paneer pakoras ( or any paneer dish you make). For this recipe you can use store bought paneer or even homemade paneer. It is super simple to make at home and you need very few ingredients. I have explained the homemade paneer process later in this post.
Here in UK i mostly use homemade paneer. If I am not using homemade paneer i use Apetina Paneer, Tesco Paneer or Riya’s Paneer. These are a few of my favourite paneer options in the UK.These are available at any of your super stores or online.
Making home made paneer
You need full fat non homogenised milk, Juice of one lemon , and 1 tsp of vinegar.
Bring the milk to a boil. As soon as it starts boiling , bring the heat to medium and slowly add the lemon juice. Start mixing and the milk starts to curdle. Add the vinegar. Mix again and let it simmer for 2-3 minutes till all the water (whey) separates from the milk fats. Take it off the heat.
Seperate the fat and the whey by pouring the liquid through a sieve, covered with a muslin cloth. Let all the liquid separate, and once the fat separates squeeze the muslin cloth to remove any excess whey. Now keep the paneer wrapped in muslin cloth under a heavy pan (for 3-4 hours) so that any left over moisture is extracted , and what you are left with is solid paneer slice.
Once it is ready, you can slice it into cubes and use it for the recipe.
Ingredients and preparation for the paneer pakodas
This marinade requires very basic ingredients – garlic paste/ground garlic, besan (Chickpea flour / Gram flour). Dry spices – Ajwain (Carom seeds), Coriander powder, deghi mirchi (or paprika), Crushed kasoori methi (fenugreek seeds), salt.
You can use absolutely use store bought garlic paste, but i prefer to use fresh garlic either crushed or grated. This recipe is all about enhanced flavours and texture, and the aroma of the fresh garlic adds so much depth to the taste of this snack.
Ajwain (carom seeds) is purely optional, but i would suggest adding these as this adds that unique pungent kick to the pakoras that you do not want to miss, and ofcourse it aids digestion .
Kasoori methi is again optional, but it really helps to bring together all the flavours .
Mix all the ingredients for the marinade, add the paneer cubes . Add more water to adjust the consistency if required. Coat the cubes nicely with the marinade and keep aside for 20-30 minutes. Paneer absorbs all flavours quickly so you do not have to marinate this for a very long time.
Frying the Paneer Pakoras
Heat oil in a pan / Karahi.You can use any vegetable oil, or mustard oil for frying. If you are using mustard oil make sure to heat it till smocking point , and then let it cool a bit so that it doesn’t burn.
Whatever oil you are using ensure it is hot enough for frying. Slowly dip the marinated paneer pieces in the oil and fry for about 2-3 minutes till these are golden brown.
Take it out on a kitchen towel to absorb any excess oil.
Sprinkle chaat masala when still hot and serve. You can also prepare a quick chaat masala at home if you have all the spices.
Making a quick chaat masala at home
I mostly have this prepared and stores in a jar. It comes in very handy to sprinkle over any savoury snacks or even raita.
Use equal amounts of kala namak (Black salt), red chilli powder, amchoor powder, little black pepper, salt to taste. Mix all spices together and the homemade masala is ready to be sprinkled on your pakoras .
Serving the Paneer Pakoras
These can be had on its own with a side of tamarind chutney (Imli chutney), or ketchup and some green mint chutney.
Any leftovers can be a part of your sandwich fillings, wraps or rolls.
You can also freeze the leftovers , and simply heat them in the oven for 7-8 minutes and these are fresh and crisp again for your snacking.
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Paneer pakora| Amritsari paneer pakora
- pan/ karahi/ fryer
- 500 gms fresh paneer
- 1 tbsp besan/ chickpea flour
- 1 1/2 tsp garlic paste/ground garlic store bought/ fresh
- salt to taste
- 1/2 tsp deghi mirchi/ paprika
- 1 tsp kasoori methi hand crushed
- 1-2 tsp water to make paste
- 1 tsp ajwain / carom seeds optional
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- Chaat masala To sprinkle on top/ For home made chaat masala check the post or notes
- Oil Any oil for frying
- Mix all the ingredients for the marinade- Besan, Garlic paste, salt, deghi mirchi powder, kasoori methi, carom seeds , coriander seeds and water. Add more water to adjust the consistency if required.
- Cut the paneer into cubes and add it to the marinade. Coat the cubes nicely with the marinade and keep aside for 20-30 minutes. Paneer absorbs all flavours quickly so you do not have to marinade this for a very long time.
- Heat oil in a pan / Karahi.You can use any vegetable oil, or mustard oil for frying. If you are using mustard oil make sure to heat it till smocking point , and then let it cool a bit so that it doesn't burn.Whatever oil you are using ensure it is hot enough for frying.
- Slowly dip the marinated paneer pieces in the oil and fry for about 2-3 minutes till these are golden brown. Take it out on a kitchen towel to absorb any excess oil.
- Sprinkle chaat masala when still hot and serve. These can be had on its own with a side of tamarind chutney (Imli chutney), or ketchup and some green mint chutney.