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simple comfort curry made with yogurt or kefir and besan (chickpea flour)

Kadhi Pakora

Kadhi Pakora & Chawal is one of the sought-after comfort foods from North Indian cuisine. Yogurt mixed with besan (chickpea flour) is simmered with aromatic spices and the onion pakoras are dunked in the yogurt curry for a delicious wholesome comfort meal.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Additional Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 3 -4



  • 75 grams ¾ cup thinly sliced onion
  • 75 grams ¾ cup besan/chickpea flour
  • ½ tsp Kashmiri red chilli powder; to taste
  • ½ tsp salt; to taste
  • 4-6 tablespoon water
  • Oil; to deep fry


  • 400 grams plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoon besan
  • 1 tsp salt; to taste
  • 1 ½ cups water; see recipe notes
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • ½ teaspoon jeera
  • ¼ teaspoon saunf/fennel seeds; gently crushed
  • 4-5 Methi/fenugreek seeds; gently crushed
  • 75 grams ¾ cup finely chopped onion
  • 10 grams 1 tablespoon garlic
  • 10 grams 1 tablespoon ginger
  • 1-2 teaspoon minced green chillies; to taste
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • ½ teaspoon red chilli powder
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder/haldi


  • finely chopped cilantro


  • Large bowls
  • Kadai/Wok for deep frying
  • Saucepan
  • Cooking spoons
  • Measuring cups/spoons
  • serving dishes
  • Paper towels
  • whisk/electric blender


how to make kadhi pakora


    • In a medium-sized bowl, mix onion, besan, red chilli powder, salt, and water and make thick-ish batter.
    • Heat oil in a kadai/wok on medium heat. When the oil is hot, drop spoonfuls of batter and fry until golden brown. Flip to the other side and fry until golden brown. Remove from heat using a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel. Repeat with the rest of the batter.


    • To a large bowl add yogurt, besan, salt, and water. Mix well with a whisk to make it smooth. [Note: You can use an electric blender to ensure everything is mixed well & you have a smooth texture]
    • Heat oil in a pan on medium heat. Add cumin seeds, saunf, and methi seeds. Fry for 30-45 seconds.
    • Add chopped onions, ginger, garlic, minced green chilies, and cook until the onion turns translucent and ginger & garlic lose the raw smell.
    • Add the spice powders - red chilli powder, garam masala, coriander powder, haldi, and cook until they turn aromatic.
    • Lower the temperature to the lowest setting. Add the yogurt mixture and cook for 20-25 minutes. Keep stirring constantly. The mixture will turn thicker, besan will lose its raw taste and the color would turn bright golden yellow.
    • Increase the heat slightly. Small bubbles will appear. Turn off the heat.


    • Add the deep-fried pakoras to the kadhi. Let the Kadhi & pakoras rest for 20-25 minutes before serving. This helps the pakoras to soak up the kadhi.
    • Serve garnished with finely chopped cilantro.



    1 CUP = 250 ML. (US cups are typically 240 ml. You can use US cups with no significant change to the dish)
    Grams to cups measurements – we strive to provide these conversions as accurately as possible. There might be some slight variations depending on the brand, weighing scale, etc.
    This serves 3-4. Adjust the serving size to suit your dietary needs.
    The trick to a creamy, velvety kadhi is to cook at low temperature and to stir constantly.
    Use Yogurt at room temperature to prevent curdling.
    Lower the temperature to the lowest setting before adding the yogurt mixture.
    Cook the Kadhi at the lowest temperature setting.
    Give sufficient time for the pakoras to soak up the floor of the kadhi and to soften up before serving.
    Make the pakoras small. They puff up when added to the Kadhi.
    Pakoras take about 5-6 minutes to cook per batch. The actual time to prepare the kadhi may vary based on the size of your kadhai/wok.