اَعُوْذُ بِاللهِ مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ الرَّجِيْمِ
بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمن الرَّحِيْمِ
[DISCLAIMER] I have significantly reduced my consumption of fish after watching a Netflix documentary called Seaspiracy (which I recommend that everyone watch). A 2021 film made about the true tragedies behind the seafood industry. This fish pakora recipe was made prior to me watching this documentary. Due to this and other research I have undertaken I have now made the decision to limit my intake of fish. Although I have not entirely stopped eating it yet. This fish recipe was made prior to this decision.
Fish pakoras are easy Pakistani fish starters made with a unique blend of spices. An all-time favourite street-food snack found all over South-East Asia. This fish pakora recipe has a light and crispy batter combined with the succulent fish on the inside. With this fish pakora recipe you will be able to whip up a batch with ease. Serve these crispy fish pakoras with a wedge of lemon and a refreshing raita dip. A terrific appetiser for your next party, but you could try these for a twist on a movie night snack or even as rainy- or cold-day treat!
Pakoras are a typical Pakistani street food sold by traders almost everywhere you go. Originally, they were made with vegetables or potatoes. Over time the batter has been adapted for use to make chicken pakora, fish pakora and other types of meat. With that being said pyaz aloo pakora have always been my favourite. Not to say that I don’t love this crispy fish pakora recipe though.
Fish pakora or fish bhaji can be made as starters or appetizers for a quick party snack. I once made them for a movie night because we had no popcorn in the house. My siblings refuse to watch movies without snacks. I was going to give everyone crisps. That would have posed a BIG issue seeing as my little brother HATES crisps. When I mean he hates them I mean he hates them. If he sees the packet, then he will immediately start having a breakdown of some sort. He holds crisp packets by the very edge of the packet, so his hands don’t get “infected” by the crisps. I don’t know why I am talking about this, but there you go. You get to learn fun facts about my family.
Back to the recipe fish do need to be as dry as possible before you add into the batter. What I usually do is pat them dry with a clean paper towel. HOWEVER, I recently learnt an AWESOME method from Dedra of Queenslee Appétit to help dry chicken wings. I refer to this in my honey BBQ chicken wings recipe. I thought I would try this method for the fish as well and it WORKED! So, what you do is you place the fish on to a baking rack then place in the refrigerator uncovered for 3 hours. Turn them over halfway to allow them to dry evenly on both sides and voila! You have your perfectly dry fish pieces. I know this method does take some time, so if you are in a bit of a rush you can stick to the much-loved method of a paper towel.
You could replace the coriander seeds with coriander powder instead. But, you won’t get the same aroma as you will with the coriander seeds. However, make sure you do crush the coriander seeds properly. You don’t want to find whole pieces of coriander seeds in your fish pakora. Not that it will matter too much. Also, be careful that you finely chop the coriander. It is more for the aesthetic really. It won’t really matter much for the taste.
With this fish pakora recipe I don’t leave it to marinade for a long time. I find the fish almost goes mushy if I leave it in the marinade for too long. What I do is I prepare the batter and add the fish then set it aside whilst I heat the oil and get the fryer ready. By that time, it has been about 5-10 minutes and I am ready to fry. If you want to marinade it then by all means, go for it. However, with most whitefish species I would recommend that no longer that 30 minutes. This is because the batter may become runny as the fish releases water. It also may start to turn mushy.
I usually use cod fish for this fish recipe, but you could use a wide variety of fish species. I have tried this recipe with haddock and plaice fish. Both times it has tasted just as good. It all depends on your type of preference on which fish you like to eat.
It is extremely important that when you add the fish into the oil that the oil is hot. If you add it into cold oil the batter will just fall off. Then you will be left with fish and chunks of fallen batter just swimming around in the oil. This batter yields a delicious and crispy pakora due to the addition of cornflour. If you don’t have cornflour, you could always omit it and add plain flour, it just won’t be as crispy!
This fish pakora recipe is the perfect Pakistani pakora recipe for all your street-food style needs.
I’m Sadia, the person behind The Aziz Kitchen. A 20-and-some year-old Muslim aspiring doctor and writer who loves to experiment with cooking, baking and all things food. On this blog you will find my favourite, delicious, family-friendly recipes.
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