Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Pazhampori | Banana Fritters | Kerala Snack | For Amateurs Like Me

Pazhampori is sliced banana fritters. My non-mallu friends all go, 'what?' when i tell them that pazhampori is banana. The banana used to make this is not common in other Indian states. It is nenthrappazham in Malayalam. The kind of bananas that are usually available in Kolkata are those we call robusta, a variety of Cavendish bananas. That's what is commonly seen in Bombay too. I get my nenthrappazham from a Malayalee store nearby and they cost Rs. 80 per kilo. Half a kilo gives me three bananas and i can make a 24 small pazhamporis. I can also eat so many by myself. *Wide grin* Sometimes that's all i eat in a day. Apart from tea. Oh by the way, for people with normal eating habits, this is a snack that is usually had with tea.

In the snack and tea shops in Kerala, the pazhamporis that you get are longer than the ones i make. Probably because they have bigger pans to fry it in. 

Slice the bananas into thin discs. Usually, i slice one banana into two first and then slice each of those slices into two. Then i cut it into half to reduce the length. So each banana gives me 8 small pazhamporis.

Take 1 cup of maida (all purpose flour)
Add a pinch of salt
Add sugar - i add 5 tsps of sugar.
Add water to it to make it into a smooth paste, the kind that can cover each banana slice. Like the dosa batter. I use a little less than 1 cup of water for the right consistency of batter. 
Put all the banana slices in this batter.
Heat vegetable oil in a pan. Drop in a bit of batter to see if it rises and makes the 'shhhhh' sound. If it does, it's hot enough. Keep it in medium flame.
Take the banana slices one by one, coat it in batter and gently drop into the pan. 
You can fry three or four or even more bananas at a time, depending upon the size of your pan. 
Turn the slices over to the other side after a minute. I judge it by the colour. If it is golden brown, it's done. This is in the right amount of flame. If it is too high, you might still get the right colour but the insides might not be cooked. 

Pazhampori, Kerala snack. Banana fritters

Some make it adding an egg to the batter. I tried it and hated it. It completely changes the taste and it is not for those people who don't like an added taste to usual tastes. If you know what i mean. If you are used to the egg pazhampori from the beginning there is not much change in the recipe. Break an egg into the batter and mix it well. Keep in mind that adding the egg will make the batter more loose, so keep it at a slightly thicker consistency than required before adding the egg. 

There are very few things that i make better than my mother. I have realised that pazhampori is one of them. At home, i would be the first to know when she decided to make pazhampori. The smell tells me that. No, this is not the pazhampori frying smell i am talking about. Even when she is just beginning to make the batter, i somehow smell something i associate with pazhampori. Now that i have started making them myself, i have understood what she was doing wrong. Her slices were thicker than required. Instead of 8 thin slices, she was making 4 thick slices. Also, sometimes the maida wouldn't be cooked through. Anyway, she won't have to make these anymore now because i have learnt how to. I can make it for her. I also want to find out how many she can eat.

Oh, if you haven't guessed it yet, this snack is not healthy at all. Lots of oil and things that health conscious people should keep away from