Irish Examiner Saturday - Irish Examiner - Weekend

Spiced Vegetable Pakoras with Mango Relish

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Vegetable fritters in a spicy batter — delicious to snack on or as a starter with a relish of your choice.

Serves 4-6

A selection of vegetables:

1 thin aubergine cut into 5mm (1/4 inch) slices or into chunks at an angle 1 teaspoon salt

2 medium courgettes, cut into 2.5cm (1 inch) slices, if they are very large cut into quarters

12 cauliflowe­r or Romanesco florets (walnut size approx.)

6 large flat mushrooms, cut in half spinach leaves

Batter

175g (6oz) chickpea or plain white flour 1 tablespoon chopped fresh coriander 1 scant teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons curry powder

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

175-225ml (6-8fl oz) iced water vegetable oil for deep frying

Garnish

Lemon wedges and coriander or parsley

Method

Put the aubergine wedges or slices into a colander, sprinkle with the salt, and let drain while preparing the other vegetables. Blanch and refresh the cauliflowe­r florets separately in boiling salted water for 2 minutes. Drain, refresh under cold water, and dry well.

Rinse the aubergine slices and pat dry. Put the flour, coriander, salt and curry powder into a large bowl. Gradually whisk in the oil, lemon juice and water until the batter reaches the consistenc­y of thick cream.

Heat good quality oil to 180°C/350°F in a deep fry. Lightly whisk the batter and dip the vegetables in batches of 5 or 6. Slip them individual­ly into the hot oil.

Fry the pakoras for 2-3 minutes on each side, turning them with a slotted spoon. Drain on paper towels and keep warm in a moderate oven (uncovered) while you cook the remainder. Allow the oil to come back to 180°C/350°F between batches. When all the vegetable fritters are ready, garnish with lemon wedges and fresh or deep-fried coriander or parsley. Serve at once alone or with mango relish.

Mango Relish

Mangoes are a great source of betacarote­ne and Vitamin C. They aid digestion, reduce acidity in the system and help cleanse the blood.

Ingredient­s

50ml (2fl oz) medium sherry

50ml (2fl oz) water

50ml (2fl oz) white wine vinegar 2 tablespoon­s sugar

1/2 cinnamon stick

1 star anise

1/2 teaspoon salt pinch of ground mace

1 mango, peeled and diced

1 small red pepper, seeded and diced 1 tablespoon lemon juice

Method

Put the sherry, water, vinegar, sugar, cinnamon, star anise, salt and mace into a small, heavy bottomed saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer over medium heat for 5 minutes. Add the mango, pepper, and lemon juice, lower the heat and simmer for 5 minutes more. Remove from the heat and let cool completely. Spoon into a screw top jar and refrigerat­e until required.

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