India and China go to dinner together in this Indo-Chinese gobi manchurian.
- 3/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1/4 cup corn starch
- 2 green chilies - finely chopped
- 2 tsp garlic ginger paste
- 1/2 tsp kashmiri chili powder
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 3/4 cup water plus a couple tablespoons
- 3 cups cauliflower florets - not too big
- 3 tbsp vegetable or other neutral oil
- 1 tbsp garlic ginger paste
- 2 green chilies seeded and chopped
- 1/2 red pepper chopped
- 1/4 onion chopped
- 2 tsp soy sauce
- 2 tbsp chili sauce - This is the spicy ketchup stuff. I use Sri Lankan
- 2 tsp rice vinegar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt to taste
- 1 tbsp corn starch dissolved in 1/4 cup water - you will not need all of it.
- oil to deep fry
Make the batter
Combine all the batter ingredients except the water. Stir to mix thoroughly.
Add 3/4 cup water and mix to create a smooth batter. I like the batter a little thin so I add a couple extra tablespoons of water. You want the cauliflower coated with batter. You don't want them to turn out like sweet and sour chicken balls in a bad Chinese restaurant. All batter and no filling is not good.
Make the sauce
Pre-heat a frying pan over medium high heat. Add the oil, red pepper and onion. Fry aggressively. You want the peppers to blister a bit if you can. This is taking a page out of the jalfrezi playbook. A little bit smoky taste adds a nice touch. You are cooking them until the peppers are soft and the onions start to char a bit. Add the green chilies towards the end. Maybe the last minute or so.
Turn the heat down to medium and add the garlic ginger paste. Stir until it stops spluttering - about 30 seconds.
Mix in the soy, rice wine vinegar and chili sauce. Stir to combine. Add 1/4 cup water (not the water with the cornstarch) and bring to a simmer.
At this point you need to decide how sticky you want the sauce. I usually add about a tablespoon of the cornstarch water mix. That works out to a little less than a teaspoon of cornstarch. If you want really thick and gloppy add more.
Add about a tablespoon of the cornstarch mixture. Bring to a simmer. Now decide if that works for you. If not add a bit more. Do not add it all. You will make glue.
Taste your sauce for salt. It probably needs about 1/4 tsp.
Cook the cauliflower
Mix the cauliflower with the batter. Be gentle. Add about half the cauliflower to the oil. Regulate the heat to try to keep it around 325-350F.
The cauliflower is done before it goes into the oil so you are really just cooking the batter. Remove the cauliflower when it gets golden brown. Place it on a wire rack on a cookie sheet.
Repeat with the other half of the battered cauliflower.
At this point stop and taste one of the fritters. Decide if you just want to stop here next time. Serve it up with a little tamarind chutney. I really like this for an appetizer.
Finish it off
Re-heat your sauce. Add the cauliflower fritters and toss to combine.
Garnish with green onions (more traditional) or little bits of green chili (tastier). Serve some lemon wedges along side if you want a bit more tang.
Serving: 4servings | Calories: 264kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Sodium: 1180mg | Potassium: 318mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 615IU | Vitamin C: 62.3mg | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 1.7mg