Pyaz ke Pakora

Onion Fritters

Serves 6-8 / 2 or 3 pakora per person


  • 1 lb (500 g) onions, thinly sliced

  • vegetable oil, for deep-frying

    Ammu Book Cover Ammu: Indian Home Cooking to Nourish Your Soul Asma Khan


  • 1 1⁄2 cups (130 g) gram flour (besan), sifted

  • 1⁄3 tsp baking powder

  • 2 tbsp ghee

  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice

  • 1⁄2 tsp chile powder

  • 1⁄4 tsp ground turmeric

  • 1 1⁄2 tsp salt

  • 6–8 tbsp cold water 


Soak the onions in cold water.

To make the batter, mix the gram flour with the baking powder and then add the ghee and mix with your hands to form crumbs. Add the lemon juice, spices, and salt and gradually stir in the water to make a batter that will coat the back of a wooden spoon. Add just enough water to get the consistency of heavy cream. 

Squeeze the onions to remove any excess moisture. Gradually add the onions to the batter to ensure the batter clings to the onions. (If you add them all at once it may make the batter too wet.) 

Heat 3 in (8 cm) of oil in a karai or wok over medium–high heat. Drop a tablespoon of the onion batter into the oil: the batter should spread and not become a ball. If the batter does not flatten and spread, it is too thick, so add a touch more water to it. Let the pakora cook for 1–2 minutes until crisp and golden brown, then turn and cook the other side. If your pakora browns too quickly, there is a risk it may remain raw inside. Maintain the heat of the oil at a level where the fritters take 1–2 minutes on each side and cook in batches of two or three at a time. Drain on paper towels as you take each batch out of the oil. Serve hot.

Dhania Pudina Chutney

Cilantro and Mint Chutney

Makes 6-8 tablespoons 


  • 1⁄2 in (1 cm) piece of fresh ginger

  • 1 bunch fresh mint leaves, shredded

  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro leaves and upper stems, roughly chopped

  • 3 green chiles

  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice  1 tbsp brown sugar

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 4 tbsp cold water


Place all the ingredients in a food processor and blend to a smooth paste.

Alternatively, grind each ingredient separately using a mortar and pestle, then mix together in  a bowl. 

Serve immediately, or cover and keep in the fridge for up to 2 days. 

Adapted from Ammu: Indian Home Cooking to Nourish Your Soul (2022) by Asma Khan. Published by Interlink Books.

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