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How to make deep fry batter?

In Indian cuisine, a deep fry batter is prepared to make Pakora (also known as fritters in western cuisine), and Bhajji

 What is the difference between Bhajji and Pakora?


Making batter is a seven step process.


1. Choose base flour.

You need a base flour that is high in protein, and starch. Protein gives adhesive quality so that the food will easily stick to the batter. Starch gives the crispiness to the fried product. In India, the most common flour used is is Besan (Chickpea flour). Chickpea flour has 23% protein, twice than most of the wheat flours. The protein level in the Besan makes it unnecessary to add egg whites. Other types of flours include Bajra (Pearl Millet), Jowar (Sorghum),  Corn (Makki Atta), Maida ( All Purpose Flour).


2. Choose coarse flour.

Coarse flour adds a crunch to the finished Pakora. The examples of coarse crunch flour are Corn meal, and Semolina (Sooji).


3. Choose dry spices

Color: For color, Turmeric powder and Degi Mirch (Paprika) are commonly used, Kasoori Patta (Dried Fenugreek leafs), may be added for green specks.

Baking Soda: Baking soda is added to reduce acidity and increase crispiness. It should be noted that Besan is not acidic, while Maida is acidic. Baking soda is not needed with Besan, but is very helpful with Maida.

Savory Taste: Salt, cayenne powder or crushed red peppers are common. For sourness; Amchoor, or dry pomegranate seeds (Anar Daana) may be added. However, remember that too much acid will effect the crispiness.

Aromatic Spices:

Crushed Cumin seeds, and Ajwain are common. These seeds release aroma while actually frying.


4. Mix dry ingredients

Mix dry ingredients together, base flour, coarse flour and dry spices.


5. Choose Fluids

You need minimum 1 cup of fluid to 1 cup of total flour (base flour and coarse flour) to make a stiff batter. The choice of fluids may be as follows:

1. Water

2. Egg white. Egg white will make the Pakora crunchier

3. Beer. If you plan to use beer, don't use Baking soda in Step 3


6. Make Batter

Add fluids to dry ingredients to make batter. Make sure there are no lumps in the batter.


7. Rest the batter

Rest the batter for 15 minutes to 30 minutes at room temperature. This allows the base flour to swell up absorbing fluids and spices. Adjust the thickness of the batter by adding more fluids or flour.  A thicker batter put a thicker coat, a thinner batter will put a thinner coat.



1. Use at room temperature. If refrigerated, let the batter come to room temperature before using to fry items. Stir well before using.

2. If you plan to store the batter, don't add the egg whites. Mix the egg whites just before you are ready to dip the food in the batter for frying.


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