I was excited to make masala greens with the tomato sauce left over from making gluten-free pizza, and looking for a fun way to round out the meal. For whatever reason, I decided that surely there was some sort of garbanzo fritters in Indian cuisine, and set out to find a recipe. It didn’t take long to find a simple preparation for chana pakora from Khana Pakana. I couldn’t help adapting it slightly, leaving out the cilantro and mint since I knew I would be turning these herbs into the dipping sauce. The mint sauce was okay, though not quite the same as the wonderful stuff from an Indian restaurant. The fritters turned out wonderfully! Definitely will be making these again soon!
Chana Pakora (Garbanzo Fritters)
1 can garbanzos
1/2 cup brown rice flour (whole wheat could also work if not gluten-free)
1-2 teaspoon cumin, to taste
1 teaspoon or so each of chili powder, black pepper, and salt, or to taste
1-2 cloves garlic, or 2-3 garlic scapes
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
Just enough water or oil to make dough stick together
Green onions or chives, finely sliced
Mash garbanzos with a fork in a medium bowl. Combine together dry ingredients, then stir into the beans to form a stiff dough. If dough is too dry and crumbly (which I found it to be, gradually drizzle in a little water or oil and knead it into dough until it comes together. Fold in green onions or chives and garlic. Pull off a small palmful of dough, form into a ball, then flatten into a thick discs and fry in oil until golden and crispy. Continue cooking in batches, adding oil to the pan as necessary. Enjoy!
Mint Yogurt Sauce
A few sprigs of fresh mint
1 small bunch fresh cilantro
A few spoonfuls lemon juice, and/or rhubarb steamed until breaks down into “puree,” to taste
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
A generous sprinkle of chili powder, or to taste
A few spoonfuls of yogurt (optional, I used whey that was left at bottom of container)
Finely mince herbs and mix with remaining ingredients. Adjust seasonings to taste, then dip in and enjoy! If you have a food processor or a powerful blender, I imagine it would make sense to use it — faster and a pleasantly smoother texture!