I finally mastered the art of making pudla (pancakes made with chickpea flour, also called besan ka chilla). I had got the spicing wrong and also adding soda bicarbonate was not right if you wanted a crispy pancake. In fact I was told to add some rice flour to get the crispiness. But I digress as I started out to make the courgette/zucchini fritters in the manner of corn fritters. I followed the recipe but realised that it would take time to cook it and I was hungry. So I popped more water into the mixture and got it down to pancake consistency. It worked well and a new version of pudla took shape.
- 1½ cup of chickpea flour
- 1 medium sized courgette/zucchini grated
- 1 medium onion finely chopped
- 2 small chillies finely chopped (you can add more if you wish)
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ¼ teaspoon red chilli powder
- Salt to taste
- 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a cup
- Water to make a pancake consistency batter – you should be able to pour the batter with a ladle and spread by moving the frying pan.
- Sieve the flour into a bowl so air is introduced and it is easier to get a smooth batter.
- Add grated courgette / zucchini, onions, chillies and mix it with the flour.
- Then add water little at a time, mixing the batter so that you can reach the required consistency.
- Then add the spices – turmeric, red chilli powder and salt. Give it another stir and rest the batter for a few minutes.
- Heat a non-stick frying pan and then add ¼ teaspoon of olive oil. You can use less oil after the first pudla is done. I tend to just drizzle a few drops on the pan only.
- Using a ladle or a large serving spoon pour the batter into the pan – about 1 to 1½ spoonful. You can spread the batter using the back of the spoon or by tilting the pan. Then drizzle a few drops of oil over the spread batter.
- Wait till the edges begin to lift off the pan just like you would a pancake and flip the pudla over to continue cooking. You can press down on the pancake with your spatula if you want to ensure even cooking.
- Check when it is done and serve it on a plate.
You will get about 6 – 8 pudlas depending on the size. The thickness of the pudla should be about ½ cm so it cooks evenly and quickly.
Mix and match ingredients for different version of the pudla –
I have made them with just finely chopped onions, chillies and tomatoes.
I have also made them with courgettes / zucchini, onions, chillies and kale. You can substitute kale with spinach.
It ensures a fair portion of vegetables in your meal and tastes good.
Tips for Serving
You can serve it with the green chilli and coriander chutney or tomato ketchup or even some raita.
Raita can be of different styles:
- Sometimes it is plain yogurt with just some salt and pepper to taste.
- Also you can have plain yogurt with finely chopped onions, tomatoes and chillies to make it spicy.
- Sometimes it is easy to make a milder version of green chilli and coriander chutney by mixing with a few tablespoons of plain yogurt.