Pakodas Not Crispy? 6 Common Mistakes And How To Fix Them

Pakoras hold a special place in the hearts of many people, not just because of their delectable taste but also because of the emotional connection they evoke. These simple fritters have a way of transporting us to cherished moments and comforting memories. The sizzling sound of pakodas frying in hot oil brings back memories of rainy days spent with loved ones, huddled together, enjoying the crispy treats and sipping on hot tea. 

These deep-fried treats are made by coating various ingredients, such as vegetables, paneer, or even chicken, in a spiced gram flour batter. Though cooking pakoras seems simple, there are several small errors that people make that result in the pakoras being soggy or flavourless. 

Here are 6 of the most common mistakes people make while cooking pakoras and how to fix them.

Mistake 1: Inadequate batter consistency

One of the most common mistakes in pakoda preparation is getting the batter consistency wrong. If the batter is too thick, the pakoras may turn out dense and heavy, while if the batter is too thin, they might become soggy and lack crispness. The solution is to achieve a medium-consistency batter that evenly coats the ingredients. Start with a thick batter and gradually add water while whisking until you achieve a smooth consistency that easily coats the back of a spoon.

Mistake 2: Insufficient seasoning

Another mistake is under-seasoning the batter, resulting in bland pakoras. The batter should be well-spiced to impart a flavourful taste. Ensure you add an appropriate amount of salt, red chilli powder, turmeric, and other spices as per your preference. Taste the batter before frying and adjust the seasoning accordingly.

Mistake 3: Overcrowding the frying pan

When it comes to frying pakoras, overcrowding the frying pan is a common mistake that leads to uneven cooking. Overcrowding lowers the oil temperature, resulting in greasy, undercooked pakoras. To fix this, fry pakoras in small batches, allowing enough space for them to cook evenly and become crispy. This way, you'll achieve perfectly cooked pakoras with a golden-brown hue.

Video Credits: Marion's Kitchen/YouTube

Mistake 4: Incorrect frying temperature

Maintaining the right frying temperature is crucial for crispy pakoras. If the oil is not hot enough, the pakoras will absorb excess oil and become greasy. On the other hand, if the oil is too hot, the pakoras may burn on the outside while remaining raw inside. The ideal frying temperature for pakoras is around 180°C. Use a thermometer to ensure the oil is at the right temperature before adding the pakoras.

Mistake 5: Using damp or wet ingredients

Moisture is the enemy of crispy pakoras. Using damp or wet ingredients, especially vegetables, can make the batter watery and prevent the pakoras from achieving the desired texture. Make sure to pat dry the vegetables thoroughly using a kitchen towel or paper towels before dipping them into the batter. This will help maintain the crispness of the pakoras.

Mistake 6: Stale or poor-quality oil

The quality of oil used for frying directly impacts the flavour and texture of pakodas. Using stale or poor-quality oil can result in off-flavours and greasy pakoras. Opt for fresh oil with a high smoke point, such as vegetable oil or canola oil, for frying pakoras. Additionally, ensure that the oil is not reused multiple times, as it can affect the overall quality of the dish.