Nadur Monji( Lotus Root Fritters)

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We( Me and my Husband) have Pottery class one day of the week in the evening. That’s when I need to make a quick snack to grab before running off to class. Generally, we stick to something like a salad/chaat. Yesterday I decided to try a new recipe from a Kashmiri cookbook- “Kashmiri Kitchen” by Purnima Kachru. I have tried so many recipes from this book and have fallen in love with Kashmiri cuisine.

Nadru Monji, as I discovered later through the internet is Street Food in Kashmir. We do not get fresh Lotus stem at our local Indian Grocery, so I pick up some every time we visit the Grocery in Long Island. They are also readily available at Asian Supermarkets.

This is the first time I made this recipe. My Husband thought is tasted very similar to  South Indian Chakkuli:) I don’t agree, but we both agree it tasted wonderful. Nadru on its own is slightly sweet and very starchy. Almost like a Potato, but much more crunchy. I personally think the chips made from Nadru taste much better than Potato chips. It’s a matter of personal taste.

The Flour I used for the batter is rice flour. The recipe called for All Purpose flour. I read that both flours are interchangeable for frying. Though I have nothing against All purpose flour, Rice flour cooks slightly faster and is gluten free. I also found a couple of recipes online that recommended Rice flour for this particular recipe.

Ingredients:

  1. Lotus stem- 250 gms, Thoroughly washed and chopped into long fingers about 3 inches in length.
  2. Flour- Rice flour or All Purpose 1/4 cup
  3. Soda bicarb- a pinch
  4. Red chili powder- To taste
  5. Salt- to taste
  6. Oil for Frying
  7. Black cumin seeds or Kalonji- 1/4 Tsp( Optional)
  8. Asafetida- I added a pinch

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In a big bowl mix together the flour, salt, red chili powder, asafetida, cumin, and add enough water to make a batter of dropping consistency. If the batter is too runny, it will not stick to the Lotus roots, if it’s too thick, you will not get the flavor of the nadru.

Fry in hot oil till golden brown. Remove on a paper towel to remove excess oil. Serve with a mint chutney or date chutney.