Gluten Free Cauliflower Pakora

I am hitting on a few of my fav food trends with this one today.  Cauliflower?  Check.  Gluten free?  Check. Indian food?  Check.  Street food?  Check.

Honestly, I came up with this recipe after be inspired by a visit to Hugo’s, my all time favorite restaurant that gives me the perfect balance of vegan food, food sensitivity awareness, genuinely killer meat dishes and sauces to die for.  They had served me up some delicious cauliflower Pakora, an Indian snack of veggies dipped in lentil flour and spices, deep fried and served with a dipping sauce.  I was in heaven with the delightful crunch.  Besides, how can you beat a “breading” that is both crunchy, gluten free, and full of protein.  That is a WIN-WIN-WIN in my book!

So, I decided to test my food processor’s motor and grind my own lentil flour for a little playtime in the kitchen.  Obviously, you can speed this whole process up by just buying some lentil flour from your local Whole Foods, health store or ethnic grocery store.  If you buy the flour, this recipe is hecka-fast!
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Gather all your ingredients for your new favorite snack!

lentil flour fried cauliflower and onion_0001I used the red lentils for making my flour because:

a) I had them handy.

b) They are dainty, so I figured I could grind them with more ease.
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Add your spices to the lentils and give everything a whirl….ummmm a LOOOOONG whirl, as this is going to take some time (maybe a little less time if you have a Vitamix I guess).  If you are using store bought lentil flour, then just mix your spices and salt straight into your flour.

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As you grind, the smell becomes totally intoxicating!

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Use a strainer to sieve your flour into a bowl.  Then return the unground lentils to the processor for more time.

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Hahaha this is a process!  A bit longer than I expected.  I stopped counting how many times I sieved and returned to the processor.  Yikes.  But it was so tasty in the end.

lentil flour fried cauliflower and onion_0009lentil flour fried cauliflower and onion_0010I have to admit that I really dig the color of the red lentil flour.  Mix in a cup of water to make a nice batter. If it seems too thick, you can add a splash more until it reaches the consistency that you want.lentil flour fried cauliflower and onion_0011

Phew, all done!  Now time to cut my veggies into finger food size and get ready to fry.

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Gloppy, gloppy, gloppy, but so dang worth it!

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While you are frying a batch at a time, go ahead and throw your dip together.  I kept things pretty darn simple with Greek yogurt as the base.

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Add in the scallions, lemon, garlic and parsley.

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Oh and do not forget the salt.

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After salting, mix and refrigerate so that the flavors meld.

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Once your batch is golden and crunchy, remove it and place them on a paper towel.  I like to salt the hot pakoras, much like I do with fried chicken.

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To give the dip a bit more kick, I hit it with a good drizzle of Sriracha sauce.  The crunch and heat are perfection!!

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So, here is to combining a bunch of food trends for 2016 into one recipe.  I guarantee that this will be a totally satisfying snack!

Bon apetit!

xoxo

Chanda

 

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Gluten Free Cauliflower Pakora

Ready to serve up some delicious cauliflower Pakora?? It's an Indian snack of veggies dipped in lentil flour and spices, deep fired and served with a dipping sauce. You will be in heaven with the delightful crunch! Besides, how can you beat a "breading" that is both crunchy, gluten free, and full of protein.

Course: Appetizer, Gluten Free, Side Dish, Snack, Tapas, vegetarian
Cuisine: Gluten Free, Indian, Vegetarian
Ingredients
Pakora
  • 1 cup whole red lentils (or 1 1/2 cup of store bought lentil flour)
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp cumin seed
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp tumeric
  • 1 cup water (use more if needed)
  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into bite size pieces
  • 1 large onion, cut into thick slices
  • canola oil, grapeseed oil, or coconut oil (for frying)
Dip
  • 1 small container greek yogurt
  • 3 scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1 lemon, juiced (you can use the same lemon to juice and zest)
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 tsp salt
Instructions
  1. If you are using store bought lentil flour, then just mix your spices and salt straight into your flour. 

    I used the red lentils for making my flour because I had them handy and they are dainty, so I figured I could grind them with more ease. Add your spices to the lentils and give everything a good, long whirl.

  2. Use a strainer to sieve your flour into a bowl. Then return the unground lentils to the processor for more time. It's quite the process but trust me, it's so worth it in the end!

  3. Mix in a cup of water to make a nice batter. If it seems too thick, you can add a splash more until it reaches the consistency that you want.

  4. Now cut all your veggies into bite sized pieces. Once they are cut, coat them in the batter and get ready to fry!

  5. Find a large, deep pot and fill it about 1/3rd full with oil. Get the oil to a nice boil and start to fry the food. 

  6. While you are frying a batch at a time, go ahead and throw your dip together. Add in your greek yogurt, scallions, lemon, garlic, parsley, and salt in a bowl. 

  7. After salting, mix and refrigerate so that the flavors meld. To give the dip a bit more kick, I hit it with a good drizzle of Sriracha sauce just before it was served.

  8. Once your batch is golden and crunchy, remove it and place them on a paper towel.  I like to salt the hot pakoras, much like I do with fried chicken. Bon apetit!

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