Khasta Kachori – Urad Dal Kachori

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Crispy, flaky Khasta Kachori! This savory lentil filled pastry is best enjoyed with spicy potatoes – a popular breakfast/snack from northern India!

Khasta Kachori

It’s amazing how many of our memories are associated with food. Like whatever occasion/special event you can think of in life, chances are there must be some food memory associated with in. Isn’t it? When I was little, we used to travel to my grandma’s village every year during our summer break. The only way to reach the village was through train. Back then there weren’t many flights, and air travel was super expensive so train was the only way to go. And anyway to reach the village, we had to take the train.

Our favorite part used to be that local train which used to make 6 hours to complete 100 kilometers (around 62 miles!!)! Can you believe it? 62 miles in 6 hours! The train was super slow and would stop after every 10 minutes. Sometimes it would stop because there’s a station so obviously it had to stop but other time it would stop just because people would pull the chain to stop the train in front of their houses. I am not kidding, this happened every year! The fun part about this 5-6 hours journey used to these little treats we used to get at the stations. One of my favorites was kachori aloo! Kachori is a very popular breakfast/snack in northern India. It’s a deep fried pastry, filled with savory stuffing. It can be filled with lentils, onion, peas, potatoes and so on. It’s usually eaten with chutney or spicy aloo sabzi with a cup of chai. Oh so good it is! As soon as the train would stop, we would jump out of it to buy a plate of kachori and aloo. And of course some samosa too. As I write this, I realize that it’s been over a decade since I visited my grandma’s village. Writing this post brings back such fond memories.

Urad Dal Kachori

The most common one that you get almost everywhere is khasta kachori. “Khasta” means crisp so this is really flaky and crispy. It’s filled with a spicy lentil filling. I have used urad dal here since it’s most commonly used but you may use any other dal of your choice. The most important part of this recipe is to ensure that the kachoris turn flaky and crispy. I never used to get them right initially but now I have learnt the tricks to make perfect kachoris every time. The credit for that goes to our home cook in India. He is a fabulous cook and he taught me how to make the perfect dough. This dough will work for so many Indian deep fried snacks like samosa, mathri and so on.

These kachoris were super flaky, in fact we ate leftovers after 2 days and they were will still as crispy! There are 3 things which you need to do to make the perfect kachoris.

1. Add little sooji (semolina) to your dough. It makes them extra crispy.

2. To ensure you have added enough oil/moyan to the flour, take a small amount of the flour and press it between your fingers. If the dough holds it’s shape means you have added enough oil and it’s good to go. If the dough crumbles away, means you need to add more oil.

3. Most deep fried snacks are fried at medium-low heat to make them crispy. Yes that’s what we do to but bhaiya told me to put the heat on high first, drop the kachori or whatever you are frying into the hot oil and then immediately lower the heat to low and then continue to fry till golden brown from both sides. This results is super flaky and crispy kachori every time! You can see in the picture below how flaky they were!

Serve these kachoris with dubki wale aloo! The recipe for that will be up on the blog next, so come back to check that out.

Khasta Kachori Recipe

 

Method

Make the dough. To a large bowl, add flour, sooji, ajwain seeds and salt. Mix till well combined. Now add oil and mix with your fingers.

Now take some flour mix and press it tightly between your fingers. The dough should hold it’s shape and not crumble apart. If dough crumbles, you need to add little more oil.

Add water little by little to form a tight but smooth dough. I used little more than 1/4 cup water for this. Cover the dough and let it rest for 30-40 minutes.

Khasta Kachori Recipe-Step

Prepare the filling. Soak urad dal in enough water overnight or minimum of 4 hours. Drain the water, rinse the dal and set aside.

Add the soaked and drained dal to a pan on medium heat. Add 2 cups of water to it, salt and pinch of turmeric powder.

Cook till the dal softens, but make sure it doesn’t turn mushy. When you take a piece of lentil in between your fingers and press it, it should break easily, that’s when you know it’s done. This will take around 10-15 minutes. Remove pan from heat, drain water and set aside.

Khasta Kachori Recipe-Step-1

To a pan add fennel seeds, coriander seeds and peppercorns. Dry roast till fragrant, around 4-5 minutes. Transfer to a spice grinder and grind coarsely.

Heat a pan on medium heat. Add oil to it, once the oil is hot add cumin seeds to it and let it splutter. Add chopped ginger and green chili and cook for 30 seconds.

Add the coarsely ground fennel-coriander mix and cook for a minute.

Khasta Kachori Recipe-Step-2

Add the cooked dal, salt, red chili powder, amchur and mix till well combined.

Keep cooking till all the water from the dal evaporates. The stuffing should be totally dry. This will take few minutes. Remove pan from heat and set aside.

Now we will start making the kachoris. After the dough has rested, give it a quick knead. Divide the dough into 10-12 equal parts. I made 11 kachoris out of this dough. Take one portion of the dough and shape it into a round ball.

Khasta Kachori Recipe-Step-3

Roll the dough ball a little and then make a well using your fingers. Fill with around 2 teaspoons of filling. Use your fingers to press the stuffing down.

Bring the edges together and seal the filling inside. You can use a paste made with flour and water to seal the edges if you are having problem with sealing them. Repeat till you have filled all the kachoris. You may be left with some extra stuffing, you can enjoy it with chai. Let the balls rest for 5-10 minutes before you roll them.

Now roll each filled kachori lightly. Kachoris are supposed to be small and thick so keep it thick. Also, roll very lightly or else the filling might come out. It’s for this reason, you should not over-fill the kachoris. Meanwhile heat oil in a kadai/wok on high heat as you roll the kachoris. Keep all the rolled kachoris covered.

Khasta Kachori Recipe-Step-4

Once the oil is hot, drop the rolled kachoris carefully into the hot oil.

Immediately lower the heat to low-medium. Continue to fry the kachoris till they turn golden brown from both sides, around 6-7 minutes. Fry all the kachoris in a similar way. Drain on a paper towel.

Serve hot kachori with dubki wale aloo!

Khasta Kachori Recipe-Step-5

The kachoris will keep well for 3 days. Wrap them in kitchen towel and then place inside a ziplock bag and into the refrigerator, When you want to eat it, just take them out and warm then in the oven, at 350 F degrees for around 5-6 minutes and enjoy!

Urad Dal Kachori Recipe

 

Khasta Kachori

Serves: 10-11 kachori

Crispy, flaky Khasta Kachori! This savory lentil filled pastry is best enjoyed with spicy potatoes - a popular breakfast/snack from northern India!
Ingredients
Dough
  • 1.25 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon semolina, also known as sooji
  • pinch of ajwain
  • ⅓ teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • water, to knead [little more than ¼ cup]
Filling
  • ⅓ cup urad dal, also known as split black gram without skin
  • 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 4 peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon chopped ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon red chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon dry mango powder, also known as amchur powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups water, to cook the dal
vegetable oil, for deep frying
    Instructions
    Make the dough
    1. To a large bowl, add flour, sooji, ajwain seeds and salt. Mix till well combined. Now add oil and mix with your fingers.
    2. Now take some flour mix and press it tightly between your fingers. The dough should hold it's shape and not crumble apart. If dough crumbles, you need to add little more oil.
    3. Add water little by little to form a tight but smooth dough. I used little more than ¼ cup water for this. Cover the dough and let it rest for 30-40 minutes.
    Prepare the filling
    1. Soak urad dal in enough water overnight or minimum of 4 hours. Drain the water, rinse the dal and set aside.
    2. Add the soaked and drained dal to a pan on medium heat. Add 2 cups of water to it, salt and pinch of turmeric powder.
    3. Cook till the dal softens, but make sure it doesn't turn mushy. When you take a piece of lentil in between your fingers and press it, it should break easily, that's when you know it's done. This will take around 10-15 minutes. Remove pan from heat, drain water and set aside.
    4. To a pan add fennel seeds, coriander seeds and peppercorns. Dry roast till fragrant, around 4-5 minutes. Transfer to a spice grinder and grind coarsely.
    5. Heat a pan on medium heat. Add oil to it, once the oil is hot add cumin seeds to it and let it splutter.
    6. Add chopped ginger and green chili and cook for 30 seconds.
    7. Add the coarsely ground fennel-coriander mix and cook for a minute.
    8. Add the cooked dal, salt, red chili powder, amchur and mix till well combined.
    9. Keep cooking till all the water from the dal evaporates. The stuffing should be totally dry. This will take few minutes. Remove pan from heat and set aside.
    Make the kachoris
    1. After the dough has rested, give it a quick knead. Divide the dough into 10-12 equal parts.Take one portion of the dough and shape it into a round ball.
    2. Roll the dough ball a little and then make a well using your fingers. Fill with around 2 teaspoons of filling. Use your fingers to press the stuffing down.
    3. Bring the edges together and seal the filling inside. You can use a paste made with flour and water to seal the edges if you are having problem with sealing them. Repeat till you have filled all the kachoris. You may be left with some extra stuffing, you can enjoy it with chai. Let the balls rest for 5-10 minutes before you roll them.
    4. Now roll each filled kachori lightly. Kachoris are supposed to be small and thick so keep it thick. Also, roll very lightly or else the filling might come out. It's for this reason, you should not over-fill the kachoris.
    5. Meanwhile heat oil in a kadai/wok on high heat as you roll the kachoris. Keep all the rolled kachoris covered.
    6. Once the oil is hot, drop the rolled kachoris carefully into the hot oil.
    7. Immediately lower the heat to low-medium. Continue to fry the kachoris till they turn golden brown from both sides, around 6-7 minutes.
    8. Fry all the kachoris in a similar way. Drain on a paper towel.
    9. Serve hot kachori with any chutney of your choice.

    Khasta Kachori

    Khasta Kachori Collage

    7 thoughts on “Khasta Kachori – Urad Dal Kachori

    1. It’s amazing how food brings back memories, Manali! For me, it’s peaches and memories of summers spent at my grandparent’s house in South Carolina. This sounds like one delicious comfort food! Thanks for sharing. I hope you are having an awesome weekend! 🙂

    2. These look amazing- thank you for the detailed instructions! I feel confident to try them 🙂 And I love your new blog look- well done!

    3. hi Manali, have just recently returned from a month travelling around Rajasthan where we had the best Kachori. I’m very. keen to try. this recipe and wondered what oil you would recommend to use for the dough and frying

      1. Hi Fiona! Rajasthan kachoris are definitely one of the best. Pyaaz ki kachori (Onion Kachori) are most popular in that region so I am sure you must have tasted those. You can try that recipe from this blog – http://foodsandflavorsbyshilpi.com/pyaaz-ki-kachori-khasta-kachori-recipe/ The ones I have shared here have lentil filling in them and are more popular in northern parts of India. You may use any vegetable oil or canola oil for frying. Hope that helps!

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