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Menus and Memories from Punjab
by Veronica Sidhu

Kadoo Koftay

Both Mamajee and his bhaanja (Uncle Gurmit Singh and his nephew, my husband) loved to garden. Tomatoes and zucchini were always abundant and we prepared this mouth-watering dish often It will become a favorite of yours as well.   (vegan)
Yield: 8 servings (18 fritters)


    For the fritters:
    • 1 clove garlic, sliced
    • 1 inch piece ginger, sliced
    • 1 small onion
    • 2½ cups (tightly packed) grated green squash like kudoo or zucchini (about 1 pound)
    • Oil for frying
    • 1½ cups chickpea flour (besan)
    • Scant teaspoon baking powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
    • 1 teaspoon ground coriander seeds
    • 1 teaspoon ground cumin seeds
    • 1½ teaspoons salt

    For the tomato sauce:
    • 3 tablespoons canola oil
    • 1 medium onion, chopped
    • 1 clove garlic, minced
    • 1-inch piece ginger, minced
    • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
    • 1/2 teaspoon chill powder
    • 2 teaspoons ground cumin seeds
    • 2 tablespoons ground coriander seeds
    • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
    • 1/2 teaspoon dried fenugreek leaves (kasoori methi) (optional)
    • 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
    • 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce or 2 cups chopped fresh tomatoes
    • 2 cups chopped fresh tomatoes (add 1/2 teaspoon more salt) or 1 can (14 5 ounces) diced tomatoes
    • 1/4 cup golden raisins
    • 2 cups water
    • Garnishes 1/4 cup chopped cilantro and 1/2 teaspoon garam masala


To make the fritters:
In a blender or food processor, grind the garlic, ginger, and onion. In a medium bowl, mix the onion mixture with the grated squash. Squeeze the squash as dry as possible, saving the juice for the gravy.

Heat the oil to 350°F. Measure out the chickpea flour in- to a large bowl and blend in the baking powder, red pepper flakes, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, and salt. Stir in the vegetables. Using two soup spoons, scrape spoonfuls of the vegetable batter into the hot oil. Do not crowd. Turn them once after one side is brown. Drain on paper towels until all are fried. The fritters may be made in larger batches when squash is in season, frozen without the sauce, and then rewarmed as needed.

To make the sauce:
In a large saucepan, heat the oil and brown the onion, garlic, and ginger. Add the spices (turmeric through fenugreek leaves) and stir for 1 minute. Add the juice from the squash, if saved. Add the remaining ingredients except the garnishes. Simmer for 15 minutes, covered, and then 5 to 10 minutes uncovered. Check for seasoning. Place the fritters in a serving dish. Pour the sauce over them, sprinkle with the garam masala and cilantro, and serve.


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